Mother’s Day has always been my least favorite holiday. BlahBlahBlah…
My mom committed suicide before I was two. I don’t remember her at all. Sometimes I feel as if I were hatched.
Who knows how a two year old grieves. Whatever it looked like, I was showing all the signs. In daycare I was totally introverted and did nothing, where before I had been friendly and active. By the time the Honeys got me, I was thoroughly in my shell. Their love coaxed me out, and saved my life. Now that they’re gone, I go to some pretty dark places sometimes. Today I wrote Little Honey a Mother’s Day card, a new tradition I just came up with. Although I can’t mail it, somehow, I know she sees. I listened to one of her favorite albums: Willie Nelson’s “Stardust.” I remembered a day in her livingroom almost 30 years ago when I first heard the album that made me a Willie fan for life. But today, it just made me weep. I cried until I was utterly dehydrated, and then I cried somemore. When I was finally all cried out, all I could think was that I wanted something totally comforting, and nothing says comfort like hot chocolate! I decided that something good would come of this day, so I set out to create the ultimate comforting cup of hot cocoa.
My criteria: a cocoa with the texture of melted chocolate, with the slightest hint of exotic spices. A also happen to love the way that sea salt tastes with chocolate, so I always add a generous pinch of Celtic grey sea salt to my cocoa when I have it.
Did the cocoa work its magic? Indeed it did. It’s hard to feel sad with a belly full of warm chocolate. Wouldn’t the world be a lovely place if we got to have bellies full of warm chocolate when we were sad, just like when we were kids? What do we get instead? Alcohol abuse, and other things to kill the pain. I must admit: as bad as I was feeling earlier, if I had a bottle in the house I’d be drunk by now instead of writing to you. I have a rule: I never go out to purchase anything without nutritional value. No running out in the middle of the night to get booze, candy or icecream. It’s a good rule. Little Honey would approve.
The Ultimate Comforting Cocoa
*All of these measurements are approximate.
1 cup almond milk
¼ cup cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of cayenne, salt and cinnamon
agave nectar to taste. I used about 3 TBSP
sliver of butter
Whisk it all together over a low flame, warming it up very gently and never boiling. When you put in the cocoa, it will be really lumpy at first, but just whisk it the whole time and it will be nice and smooth.
Part of the joy of creating this cocoa is adding a pinch of this and that. I love the combo I came up with. But I encourage you to try dashes of other spices you like, such as nutmeg, cardamom and ginger. You could also sweeten with honey or sugar or even maple syrup. It’s all about making a comforting blend that sooths you.