For the Mix
• 1⁄2 cup high-quality cocoa powder
• 3 ounces of dark chocolate, 70 to 90 percent cocoa, coarsely chopped • 2 tsp cornstarch
• 1/8 tsp fine sea salt
• 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
For the Hot Chocolate
• 1 cup whole milk
• Maple syrup, honey, or other preferred sweetener (optional)
Make the hot chocolate mix:
1. Combine cocoa powder, chocolate, cornstarch, and sea salt in a food processor. Scrape in vanilla seeds; discard pod. Blend until mixture is smooth and powdery, about 1 minute.
2. This mix can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two months.
Make the hot chocolate:
1. Bring milk to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in 3 tablespoons of hot chocolate mix and cook, whisking occasionally, until mixture returns to a simmer and hot chocolate mix is dissolved and thickens slightly, 1 to 2 minutes. Sweeten to taste or leave unsweetened.