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This year, TikTok brought a wide variety of viral food trends to the world. There’s whipped coffee, pancake granola, table-sized nachos, and now, in time for the holidays, hot chocolate bombs.
Hot chocolate bombs are exactly what they sound like: an explosion of cocoa powder and marshmallows. A hollow chocolate ball holds the exploding duo and melts when it falls into a mug of hot milk. The result is a rich cup of hot chocolate.
Among the many local places that are adopting this trend for the holidays – Sarris Candies sold 5,000 of the chocolate bombs in two hours according to Next Pittsburgh – is Square Cafe in East Liberty. Their online store has a long list of flavor combinations, from peppermint to toffee.
Assuming my first attempt at exploding hot chocolate would fail (spoiler alert: I was right), I bought three bombs to test the fad: a classic dark chocolate bomb filled with powder and marshmallows, one Dark chocolate peppermint bomb and a white chocolate and cinnamon version.
I made two big mistakes trying to explode the first bomb. At first I used water. Water was my Swiss miss as a child, but – as I have since found out – the parcels contained milk powder. Without the milk powder, my hot chocolate was half gloopy and thin.
My second mistake that didn’t help the taste was using a mug that could serve as a soup bowl. I thought, based on the size of the bomb, that a large mug would keep the hot chocolate from becoming too sweet. Instead, it watered everything down.
Attempt number two with a smaller mug, hot milk and the peppermint bomb was a great success. The bomb exploded properly, the chocolate ball slowly disappeared into the mug and marshmallows appeared one by one on the surface. The drink itself was rich, creamy, and rich in real chocolate. The peppermint aromas smelled of the explosion. I felt like Swiss Miss wouldn’t do the trick after tasting a hot chocolate bomb.
I haven’t tried the white chocolate bomb yet, but I have a few ideas to make the third attempt an even bigger success: melt the bomb in coffee, try alternative milk, or add a dash of bourbon.
Now for pancake muesli and nacho tables.