Happy National Hot Chocolate Day! This annual holiday celebrates the traditional hot drink enjoyed worldwide on cold winter days. There is often confusion between hot chocolate and hot cocoa, which are obviously related but slightly different. Hot chocolate is produced from the entire cocoa bean, which includes a center (nib) that is about 54% cocoa fat. In 1828, Dutch chemist and chocolatier Casparus van Houten Sr. patented a process that removes the fat from roasted cocoa beans and allows the bean to be ground into cocoa powder that can be easily mixed into drinks (e.g. hot cocoa) or used in baking. Today you can drink either hot chocolate or hot cocoa, but the taste will be different depending on what you mix it with.
Celebrated annually on January 31st.
Enjoy National Hot Chocolate Day!