Goodbye chocolate . . . hello chocolate

Aaaaahhh...the first day of Autumn. The State Fair is in full swing, leaves are juuuust starting to turn, and there's a crisp bite to the evening air.

But it also means that the chocolate flower days are numbered, and they are sending forth their final, fragrant bursts of blooms. When I first heard of chocolate flower (Berlandiera lyrata), I thought, "pinch me." No way. But they're real, and they really do smell like hot chocolate, especially in the morning. Yum. And they're extremely xeric: You can find them popping up on wind-blown sandhills, in cracks between pavement, and thriving in neglected medians.

I will miss finding the sunny yellow flowers in my meanderings around town and in my garden, but since it's officially autumn now, I'll gladly trade the mere scent of hot chocolate for a big mug of the real thing...

Ladies and gentlemen, start your molinillos!

Bate, bate, chocolate,
tu nariz de cacahuate.
Uno, dos, tres, cho!
Uno, dos, tres, co!
Uno, dos, tres, la!
Uno, dos, tres, te!
Chocolate, chocolate!
Bate, bate, chocolate!
Bate, bate, bate, bate,
Bate, bate, CHOCOLATE!

Views: 345

Comment by JeSais on September 23, 2009 at 9:01am
yummmmmmmmmmm. one more reason I could never be a vegan :-)
Comment by Laura on September 23, 2009 at 9:08am
I hear you. Unfortunately, real milk is the only way to go, even if it's skim. I've tried making mexican hot chocolate with all brands of soy, rice, and nut milks. No dice. And a TOTAL waste of all those little wedges of chocolate. Sigh...
Comment by Masshole in Fringecrest on September 23, 2009 at 9:10am
even if you are vegan, you can eat this I think... kind of bitter, but still chocolatey... Endangered Species 88% Cocoa Extreme Dark Chocolate-certified vegan.
Comment by Laura on September 23, 2009 at 9:32am
Thanks, Masshole. I love Endangered Species chocolate you know if they make vegan hot chocolate, too?

There are quite a few dairy-free "drinking chocolates," like those served and sold at Kakawa up in Santa Fe. I've tried several of them, and highly recommend Kakawa's chocolate drinks, but they are definitely an acquired taste. Or, perhaps my tastes have been corrupted by traditional milk- and sugar- and cinnamon-laden hot chocolate.
Comment by Masshole in Fringecrest on September 23, 2009 at 10:06am
I don;t know if they make a vegan hot chocolate, but I did hear that even the "vegan" ones can sometimes be rejected by the most stalwart of practitioners... if there's any sugar in it it is likely refined with bone char. Where does the madness end? :-)
Comment by Juan on September 23, 2009 at 11:22am
Mmmmm.... Mexican Hot Chocolate brings back many fall memories. My dad used to make it for us all the time. Oh, good times. . .. .
Comment by Benny the Icepick on September 23, 2009 at 3:39pm
I remember several years ago, on the "old" DCF, Spring Griffin put up a recipe for her Red Chile Hot Chocolate. Being the idiot I am, I ordered some hot cocoa from a nearby cafe, and dug out some crushed red pepper that had come with some pizza earlier in the week.

"Close enough," I said, and dumped the entire packet into the hot chocolate. A few quick stirs and a thirsty sip later, and I was choking on the spice. I had hiccups the rest of the day.

Of course, I finished the cocoa.
Comment by magoo on September 23, 2009 at 9:57pm
mmm, sounds good, Benny--gotta try that~


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