14 December 2014

Home Alone and Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate

With almost two years in Turkey under my belt now I have learned that Istanbul is not as completely devoid of everything Christmas as I thought it was. There are actually quite a few places that sell Christmas trees, ornaments, and various other decorations. However I have decided to remain decorationless. Sherlock loves too much climbing the hanging closet organizers, wood support beams, my leg...I am not about to tempt fate with a shiny, sparkly, potentially fragile decorated tower of climbing wonder.

 However there are some Christmas traditions that can be celebrated wherever you are and regardless of your demon cat situation. The easiest of these...movies. I have a pretty extensive collection of Christmas movies and no Christmas is complete without the classic Home Alone. Yes, Home Alone. Macaulay Caulkin's 1990 masterpiece. My first Christmas away from home was 2002 when I was living in Taiwan. At the time I didn't own the movie, nor did I have any Christmas movies with me. Our cable package included several English HBO channels and the day Home Alone was on was my holiday low point. Even though my awesome mom spent a fortune sending me gifts and candy I was so depressed to not be home and to not be inundated with Christmas everything everywhere. That scene at the end when Catherine O'Hara has finally made it to Chicago and walks into the house to see it all decorated and the tree, you know that part, I lost it. Burst into tears and sobbed my way through the rest of the movie. Thank goodness it was already near the end. Low point.*

I keeps your DVDs warm for you

Crying over movies that aren't sad at all isn't the only great way to celebrate Christmas though. While not really a Christmas tradition, winter + holiday calories (which we all know don't count) is the perfect time to enjoy hot chocolate!

My dwindling supply of pb
 I love that people are getting experimental with hot chocolate recipes; although I question the taste of the person who invented lavender lemongrass white hot chocolate. No. But to the genius who decided to put peanut butter in hot chocolate, I tip my hat to you ma'am.

 Recipe: (slightly adapted from The Messy Baker)
  • 1 cup milk*
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream*
  • 60 grams dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 TBLS cocoa powder (opt)
  • 1 TBLS sugar (opt)
  • 2 big TSPS creamy peanut butter
*vary  measurements depending on taste
  1. Heat the milk and cream over low until hot to the touch or bubbles form around the edges. Do NOT let boil.
  2. Whisk in the chocolate, cocoa, and sugar until everything is smooth.
  3. Whisk in peanut butter.
  4. Enter chocolate peanut butter Nirvana.

From now until the end of the Christmas season check in and see what other movies and hot chocolates with which we're celebrating!

*Remember the part when Kevin is walking down the street and his grocery bags break, spilling everything all over the sidewalk? His face is so perfect. We've all been there, Buddy.

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