Cherry Vanilla Hot Chocolate

makes 2 drinks

recipe slightly adapted from Winter Cocktails

  • 1/8 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean pod
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1/8 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 3 oz. chopped white chocolate
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup heaving whipping cream
  • 3 oz. kirsch (cherry liqueur)
  • 2 maraschino cherries, for serving

In a small bowl, scrape the seeds of half the vanilla bean pod and stir in the sugar to combine. Set aside.

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add cocoa powder,  vanilla sugar and whisk until a paste forms. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and reduce heat to medium-low. Stir in white chocolate and cook, stirring, until chocolate is completely melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Meanwhile, place heavy whipping cream in a small jar. Close lid on the jar tightly and vigorously shake jar until whipped cream is formed, about 2-3 minutes. Serve hot chocolate in warm mugs and spike each mug with 1 1/2 oz. kirsch. Top with whipped cream and serve with maraschino cherries.