Tuesday Treat

Bicerin (Serves 1)

As the evenings are closing in and the days are getting colder, I think we may all need a little ‘pick-me-up’ to take us through to Christmas… and so this week I thought I’d share a Bicerin!..

A Bicerin is a luxurious coffee-and-chocolate drink topped with cream that originates from Turin. Rather than being mixed together like a ‘mocha’, the espresso and hot chocolate are poured in layers and topped with whipped cream – so initially through the light cream you taste the sweetness of the velvety chocolate this is then followed by the punch of espresso coffee; it is heavenly! I first tasted it at Caffè Al Bicerin when I visited Turin a few years ago. Caffè Al Bicerin is a beautiful little cafe with just 6 or so tables, the interior is wonderfully antiquated and dimly lit by candles on white marble tabletops. It really is a ‘must-see’ place if you visit Turin (I would definitely recommend a long weekend in this historic Italian city!). The cafe is not only renowned for having invented the Bicerin, but it is also famous for its other delicious sweet treats such as Zabaione – but that’s another story… (I will be sharing that recipe in the future!).

Back to the Bicerin… If you love coffee and chocolate (and cream!), you can’t go wrong with this recipe. It is important to make it with the very best, strong espresso coffee and velvety hot chocolate; I think that the following recipe is pretty authentic!.. Enjoy!

50ml double cream

½ teaspoon icing sugar

125ml full fat milk

50g chocolate, roughly broken up

½ tablespoon caster sugar

75ml hot espresso coffee

  1. Firstly whip the cream with the icing sugar until is just forms soft peaks.
  2. Put the chocolate, milk and caster sugar in a small saucepan, whisk until it begins to boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for a minute, continue whisking, ensuring that the chocolate has melted.
  3. Pour the hot espresso coffee into a heatproof glass. Carefully and slowly pour the hot chocolate over the top. Finally, top with a generous dollop of whipped cream. Heaven!

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