Tsokolate, a Delicious Filipino Delicacy

Looking for something exotic to feed your chocolate habit with? Try tsokolate, Filipino hot chocolate.

Tsokolate is one of those things we can thank the Spanish for, at least in an oblique sense. It was they who spread the exotic Central American drink called xocolatl to all corners of their far-flung empire -- including the Philippines, a large cluster of islands between Asia and Australia.

Once there, of course, it was Pinoy ingenuity that helped it evolve into the unique variant of hot chocolate that it is today. Hang tight and we'll tell you all about it.

One Tasty Method of Preparing Tsokolate

Tsokolate is traditionally made using a mixture of hot water and tableas, which are pre-prepared cocoa balls or disks, often with ground peanuts added for flavor. Tableas are easily found in Filipino markets, if you're fortunate enough to live near one; otherwise, they can be purchased on the Internet.

Making a nice, thick cup of Pinoy-style hot chocolate is simple. Boil a cup of water in a saucepan (traditionally called a tsokolateria) and toss in a tablea. Let it sit for a minute to soften, then use a batidor (wooden beater) or wire whisk to break it up and stir the mixture into a foamy froth. It's ready to serve!

And Yet Another

If you don't have a Filipino market handy or can't otherwise get your hands on some tableas, you can always make tsokolate from scratch. This method is a little more complex than the above one, but you can make it from ingredients you should have no problem getting your hands on. Here's how you do it.

Our Extreme Tsokolate Recipe

1 pound (2 cups) of chocolate
6 cups of milk
6 eggs

Your first step in creating a brisk cup of tsokolate is to separate the egg yolks from the whites; you'll need only the yolks for this recipe, so save the whites for something else. Put the yolks aside in a bowl.

Next, chop the chocolate into small pieces of a uniform size, so that it will melt evenly. You can skip this step if you're working with chocolate chips (which are ideal) or chocolate coins. Heat the milk in a saucepan, adding the chocolate and stirring continuously until it begins to boil and the chocolate is completely melted. (Be careful; chocolate scorches very easily.) Once the mixture has thickened a bit, add the egg yolks and stir it all briskly with a wire whisk until it's foamy.

For best results, serve your creation immediately, while it's still piping hot. You'll end up with about six servings of incomparable Filipino tsokolate.