4 cups homemade nut, seed or coconut milk
1 small smoked chile or a pinch of smoked chile flakes
2 cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces, or 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon cardamom pods
2 star anise
1⁄2 teaspoon whole cloves
1⁄2 cup cacao powder
1 big spoonful coconut butter
1 or 2 dates, pitted and chopped, or 1 teaspoon maple syrup
Place the milk, chile, cinnamon, cardamom, anise and cloves in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from the heat, cover and let stand for 15 minutes. Strain, discarding the spices, and return the milk to the pan. Over medium low heat, whisk in the cacao, butter, and dates or syrup until the chocolate is dissolved and the mixture is warm. Transfer to a high-speed blender, blend and serve in your favorite mugs or bowls.
NOTE: If using maple syrup, no blending required.