When I was a little girl, my parents always told me not to grow up too fast. They warned me about bills and taxes, about traffic jams and boring jobs, about ungrateful children who trash your house and complain about evvvvverythiiiiing. Not a word of this got through to me, who felt all those things were worth the headache as long as I could stay up as late as I wanted and eat Cool Ranch Doritos for every meal. Had they told me, though, that growing up would mean one day I would be subject to icy side-eye from other adults whenever I ordered a glass of chocolate milk, I would have stayed eight years old forever.
What is it with grownups and chocolate milk? They see no issue with fancy grilled cheese sandwiches, rainbow bagels or doughnuts covered in Fruity Pebbles and glitter. Say you’re craving a nice, tall glass of refreshing chocolate milk, though, and people start to snicker. Jokes will be made about asking your mommy to make one for you, then once the laughter dies down everyone will go back to sipping on their unicorn Frappuccinos like responsible adults.
If you’re not brave enough to confront your friends and coworkers about their anti-chocolate milk bias, then why not make your own chocolate syrup so you can claim it’s "artisanal"? Then the next time the craving strikes you can announce you’re in the mood for a single origin-infused milk beverage, and no one will have a problem with your choices.
1 cup Dutch process cocoa powder, preferably an expensive one with a name that sounds like a Swiss boarding school
¾ cup whole milk
¾ cup water
2 cups sugar
½ cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla (the fancy one!)
¼ teaspoon very impressive salt
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the milk, water, sugar, and corn syrup. Cook over medium-high heat until boiling, then reduce heat to low and continue to cook while whisking for about a minute to make sure all the sugar is dissolved. Add cocoa powder and continue whisking until smooth, then reduce heat to low and simmer until the syrup reduces by ¼. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and salt. Cool completely and transfer to a very elegant bottle, then store in the refrigerator.