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My name is Melissa Howell and I specialize in custom portrait design for your home. You can visit my official photography website at to view more of my work and to contact me to set up a consultation.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Mexican Choclate Ice Cream

I spent two days going to every grocery store from here to Kansas looking for it. My elusive prize? Mexican chocolate. I don't know when the idea first ocurred to me, but once I had it in my mind, I could not let go of it. So I searched and searched. At one store, I was told to look in the baking section, ask at the cheese counter, ask at the bakery (sometimes they have big blocks of chocolate). All this after I had already looked in the Mexican food section. Finally, a store worker visited the hot chocolate section, and returned with this:

It was the mother lode. I have had real Belgian chocolate, in Belgium. This is not Belgian chocolate. It is something entirely different, and entirely wonderful. It has a rich, complex flavor that I cannot describe, but that is absolutely mesmerizing. There is nothing unusual in the ingredient list, so I can only assume it's the "artificial flavoring" that makes the difference. Whatever it is, I love it. I love it to death.

So I went online to look for recipes for Mexican chocolate ice cream, and all of them involved like 6 eggs and lots of cooking. Well, that's just not how we do things around here, so I made up my own recipe, and I must say, it is divine! I couldn't be more pleased with how it turned out. It has a wonderful complement of cinnamon, and ends with a slight kick from the cayenne pepper. (Hey, this is Mexican chocolate ice cream. There has to be something hot in it). This is now my new favorite ice cream. I can't wait to make more! (Please see this post for a recommendation of a fantastic ice cream maker).

Mexican Ice Cream
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 disk of Mexican chocolate (I recommend Abuelita brand, found at most regular supermarkets and Walmart. Check the Mexican section and the hot chocolate section).
1/4 cup cocoa powder (regular baking chocolate)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon (you can add more if desired)
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (add more if you can stand the heat!)
pinch of salt

Pour 4 cups of whole milk into a pan on the stove and add one Mexican chocolate disk. Heat on medium and stir with a wisk until all chocolate is melted and incorporated. Pour 1 1/2 cups into a mixing bowl and add the 1/2 cup of sugar. Wisk together until sugar is dissolved. (The warm milk will help the sugar dissolve faster. Save the rest of the chocolate milk and reheat if desired, or just drink it cold. It is fantastic!) Add the 1 1/2 cups of cream, the cocoa powder, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and cayenne pepper. Wisk together until everything is well incorporated. Cover and put in the refrigerator for a couple hours or overnight to chill. After mixture is cold, pour into ice cream maker and follow manufacturer's instructions for your ice cream maker. For mine, I just let it run for about 1/2 hour, until the ice cream was of soft-serve consistency. Transfer to airtight container and put in freezer. Let freeze for a few hours or overnight to harden and to allow the flavors to meld. Enjoy immensely!

Monday, August 1, 2011


Recently, I have discovered Dressing Your Truth, which has made a HUGE difference in how I dress and how I feel about myself. I will be talking more about this in the future, but right now, there is a giveaway going on at The Carol Blog! Go check it out!