Champurrado: The Best Mexican Hot Chocolate Ever

Champurrado. On a day like today, when Miami woke up at 42˚F, the truth is that a very thick and hot champurrado is all I want.
The first time I heard the word champurrado it was meaningless to me. But only until I realized this is the most comforting, delicious hot beverage made with Mexican chocolate and spices.

Champurrado, I would say, it’s the super Premium version of the Mexican hot chocolate. It’s flavored with cinnamon, star anise and cloves.

It’s sweetened with piloncillo (papelón or panela.) Also champurrado has the peculiarity that is thickened with masa harina, which is the cornmeal with which tortillas, sopes and tamales are made, and is similar to the arepa flour, but with a sharper, more Mexican flavor.

So, after a week of cold weather, with rainstorms, one after the other, and days when Internet comes and goes, it's nothing like a champurrado.

Thanks to this champurrado, I had the honor to once again receive in my kitchen the cameras of NBC and Telemundo 51 and guess what: Ana Rosa Thillen produced a video that had millions of views across the country. Such a large number exceeded 5 million views only in Los Angeles and in less than 24 hours.

With this video, I experienced what happens when, inexplicably something goes viral on social media and was amazed with the controversy that was generated among those who say champurrado doesn’t call for any milk and say that my champurrado is just a chocolate atole.

As my dad would say, about tastes and colors authors haven’t written. I found champurrado recipes with milk added from bloggers whom I respect and admire, as Yvette Márquez-Sharpnack, coauthor of Muy Bueno Cookbook.

With no authority regarding the Mexican culinary heritage and with no intention to polemicize about any culinary tradition, I share this recipe that I published for the first time at Mamás Latinas and seems to be perfect to warm you on a day like today.

But before, please check out my viral Champurrado video:

Champurrado | Ingredients for 4 cups
6 cloves
2 anise stars
2 cinnamon sticks plus 4 for garnishing
½ cup papelón (piloncillo or panela)
2 cups water
2 tablets Mexican chocolate (I used a special edition of Abuelita)
½ cup masa harina (most popular is Maseca and for this recipe I used Red Mills)
4 cups milk

In a saucepan over medium heat, add the water and spices to a boil and let boil for about 5 minutes.

Remove the spices and add the chocolate, reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is completely dissolved.

Add corn flour and cook stirring constantly until completely dissolved and no lumps.

Cook for about 5-6 minutes until the mixture has thickened.

Add milk and continue stirring until blended.

Serve hot and garnish with a cinnamon stick.
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