Hot Chocolate Italian Rich

Italian rich hot chocolate is a delightful after dinner treat, or served and enjoyed on any cool evening.

Italian Hot Chocolate is a must try for all Chocolate Lovers! Thick, rich and creamy; perfectly aligning heightened flavor with content taste buds! The following  recipe is simple to prepare and will warm your heart on a cool evening.

Serves 2  4 oz cups (125 ml) and   Preparation time 10 minutes

This recipe calls for whole milk, which can easily be substituted with  1% Milk, Almond Milk, or Soy Milk.

  • 60% dark chocolate bar  4 thin squares, or 2 solid chunks. (50 g)
  • 1 tsp sugar  (10 g)
  • 1 cup (250 ml) Whole Milk
  • Whipping Cream
  • Cocoa Powder, Cinnamon, or Chocolate Shavings (for presentation)
  • **To make a more festive drink add liquor to already prepared hot chocolate; best choices for 1 ounce (30 ml) of one of the following: Kahlua, Baileys, Peppermint Schnapps,  Amaretto, or Frangelico. Then continue to top off whipping cream and Cocoa Powder, Cinnamon, or Chocolate Shavings .

    Hot Chocolate must be tempered when making the drink so that pieces of chocolate do not coagulate. Add a small amount of milk and stir.

On medium-low heat place a sauce pan and 4 chocolate squares (50 g).  With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon begin to stir chocolate until melted. Add sugar and stir.  Remove sauce pan from heat. To reduce coagulation of  chocolate and to achieve a creamier fluid, begin to slowly work in milk, add only 1 TABLESPOON MILK and stir for 10 seconds, add a ANOTHER TABLESPOON MILK, stir for 10 seconds, add 1/4 cup stir thoroughly.

Chocolate is tempered when it’s temperature has been properly raised, lowered and with the right amount of milk fat, the chocolate is left shiny.

Lastly, place sauce pan back onto stove top, constantly stirring for 2 minutes to keep the chocolate and milk creamy and reducing the chances of burning. Chocolate Milk is done when warm vapors  ascend and soft bubbles begin on edge of milk.** Pour chocolate milk into small mugs, can be topped off with whip cream and chocolate shavings or powdered chocolate and cinnamon.

By: Kimberly Crocker-Scardicchio

This recipe is rich in calcium, phosphorous, vitamins A, D, B6, iron, potassium and magnesium. Lesser amounts of vitamins and minerals can also be found in hot chocolate.  4 0z (125 ml) serving has: 96 calories, 15 mg cholesterol, and 55 mg sodium.

Recommended Daily Intake of Vitamins & Minerals

Recommended daily intake of vitamins and minerals and actual breakdown of Vitamin Content for Vegetables and Fruits with a glance at Mineral Content on Fruit and Vegetables Informative links that nicely graphs the proper milligrams of vitamins and minerals that should be ingested on a day to day basis with warnings about how they may create organ sensitivity or organ damage.

Eat Know How.  Know the Healing Power of Food

Recommended link: Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamin “H” for Haar and Haut

European spa’s know it and sell it at their Benessere Resorts (well-being)!  The style toted by european women is practiced weekly as they go to local salons and focus on their natural beauty. When referencing the body it’s as simple as name dropping, just say the German words “Haar and Haut” and you have “Hair and Skin”.

Vitamin H derives its name from Haar and Haut (also known as  Biotin/B7) therefore, this vitamin  is critical in the making of:  skin, hair cells, breaking down fats and producing fats metabolized from protein/amino acids as it assists key enzymes (carboxylase) to produce what is necessary for life.

Carefully understanding the word metabolism allows for easier comprehension on how and why we can better do better in improving or maintaining a lean machine.   Metabolize comes from the Greek word Metabole meaning Change.

We count on our metabolism, to break down carbohydrates, proteins, and fats into smaller units; those units are reorganized as tissue building blocks (or as energy sources) and then waste products are eliminated and removed based on what our body cannot use.  In order for a body’s enzyme’s or hormone’s to do all this work, it needs an assistant  (referred to as co-enzymes) like biotin so that principle enzymes can participate in the production and building of healthy bodies.

Foods rich in Biotin

Improving  daily intake of vitamin H  is easy to do by choosing one of the following foods and including it into a well rounded diet.  Best foods for Biotin/Vitamin H/B7  are:  cooked egg yolks and whites, liver, fish, peanuts, peas, cauliflower, corn and grains. Biotin is produced in the intestines through bacteria as well. Vitamin B7 is also found in synthetic form.
Interference of proper uptake of vitamin B7 can happen through consumption of alcohol, which limits or prohibits the co-enzyme to function, as well as eating of raw eggs.  Research shows  that the raw egg white holds the  protein Avidin which can  interfere with Biotin which is found in the egg yolk.  Therefore, it’s advised that if biotin deficiency is determined in an individual, that one should cook the egg so that avidin is denatured upon cooking, while biotin remains intact.  Those who are pregnant, lactating, or athletic may need extra vitamin B7 and should consult their doctors to have their levels of biotin checked.
Biotin/B7 deficiency can be noted by causes of skin rashes (dermatitis), nail and hair (alopecia) loss, conjunctivitis (pink eye) and tingling in extremities.  It may also result in weakness, depression, hallucination, numbness, fatigue, irritation, rashes, loss of appetite.
We can still enjoy the care of “Haar and Haut” at our local hair salons for cuts, pedicures and manicures! However, with accurate dietary information in hand, knowledge and proper care of oneself  can improve lifestyle and attention to what will bring about physical success.
By:  Kim Crocker-Scardicchio

Minerals Compliment Vitamins

MINERALS are an important part of our daily diet. Did you know that without certain minerals consumed in our diet that we risk changes in blood production, bone growth, organ function, and vessel stability? While only 5% of the human body is made up of mineral matter, they are critical to keeping the blood and tissue fluids from either becoming too acid or too alkaline.  Minerals allow other nutrients to pass into the bloodstream, which aids in the transportation of nutrients to the cells and also draws chemicals in & out of the cells.  It’s a big job for such a small object whose sole job is to make sure, that our bodies are healthy and strong.

Additionally, vitamins cannot effectively work in our bodies without the correct balance of minerals. In other words a well balanced diet must be eaten.  For example; calcium is needed for vitamin “C” utilization, zinc for vitamin “A”, magnesium for “B” complex vitamins, selenium for vitamin “E” absorption, etc.


Calcium: Dairy Products, Tofu, Salmon, Almonds, Oranges, Broccoli

Zinc: Oysters, Crab, Beef

Magnesium: Grains, Legumes, Nuts, Beef

Selenium: Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts

Vitamin B and Vitamin E

Vitamin B’s strongly impact the entire body and are therefore a critical part of ones daily dietary intake. Vitamin B is critical for neuro functions, metabolisom which controls and regulates the body, and energy production.

Listed below are the benefits that the body receives from from this important vitamin.

  • Increase mood stability
  •  Creates energy and reduces headaches, (B-2)
  • Increase blood circulation and is a vessel dilator (B-3).
  • Reduce depression and stress (B-5 and B-7),
  • Reduces weakness, numbness, tingling in arms, improves on diabetes (B-6)
  • Improves and promotes heart health, (B-12)

Dietary Source: Liver, Shellfish, Milk, Eggs, Fortified Cereal, Garbanzo Beans, Chicken, Banana, Spinach, Tomato, Potatoes.

Vitamin E is an important body lubricant for all organs and muscles, in other words it helps your body run like a smooth “Oiled Machine”.  Additionally, it keeps skin, eyes, and the heart healthy. Vitamin E is credited for increasing HDL (healthy) cholesterol and reducing LDL (lousy) cholesterol.

Dietary Source: Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO), Avocado, Almonds, Olives, Nuts, Seeds Green Leafy Vegetables, Sardines and Crab.