I ate a brownie the other day, and I didn’t like it.
This is not a usual occurrence in my world. I was born with my family’s propensity for chocoholism, and I never turn down the opportunity to inhale it. But this was a luncheon brownie, at a catered workplace barbecue, wrapped in plastic and glistening with chocolate(or is it?)-y icing and, well, chemicals.
I don’t eat a lot of processed stuff — especially baked goods — so I think I’m attuned to the artificial when it appears. Ick. That’s a key reason that chocolate syrup in the brown, nostalgic bottle doesn’t permanently reside in my fridge, as it does in many others’. I like chocolate syrup, and everything it is used to create, but I can’t get over the fact that it’s really just gloppy corn syrup with some chocolate flavoring. Double ick.
I tell you, though. My world has been rocked. I’ve discovered that you can make chocolate syrup, in like 5 minutes, with ingredients you already have in your kitchen. No hand wringing or trips to the grocery at 10 pm to satisfy the chocolate urge. And you know exactly what’s in it. Sugar + cocoa powder + whole milk + vanilla + flour + salt = pure decadence.
My life may never be the same.
This homemade syrup is thick and glossy, with a deep, dense chocolate flavor that makes its bottled cousin look like a total wimp. You just have to make sure you use good quality cocoa powder, because that’s the star ingredient. Garbage in is garbage out.
Serve it warm or cold, over ice cream, in milk, over cookies or cake. You could even add some other flavors — like mint (fresh or extract) and orange (zest or extract) — or kick it up a notch with some bourbon or brandy. And when you’ve just about had it with, oh, chocolate-laden everything in your kitchen, make cupcakes! Homemade Chocolate Syrup
- 2 1/4 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
Mix the sugar, cocoa powder, flour and salt together in a medium saucepan with a whisk until well combined.
Add 1/2 cup milk and whisk until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. It will be thick.
Whisk in the rest of the milk. Heat the saucepan on medium high heat and bring to a boil. Keep whisking. Once it boils, reduce the heat to low and let it gently simmer for five minutes. Keep whisking, occasionally.
Remove the pan from the stove and add the vanilla. Let it cool, then pour into your container.
Use warm or chilled. You can also keep it covered in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.