Our family has embarked on virtual travels to various countries and regions. To explore these countries and their cultures, we have followed along with the festivals, cooked and eaten traditional foods, learned of traditional handicrafts with hands on exploration, along with many activities to immerse ourselves. Chronicled here are some of these activities.

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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Recipe: Popular Chinese Drink ''Cocoa with Rock Salt & Cheese ''

This weekend, for our taste of China, we thought we'd try out something less traditional - something trendy and popular: Happy Lemon's Cocoa with Rock Salt & Cheese. 

Happy Lemon's Cocoa with Rock Salt & Cheese
Photo Credit: Rachel Alcantara

Happy Lemon is a fast food like drink spot that originated in Hong Kong, and is now found throughout China, and different parts of Asia. It's very popular, with people lining up for their drinks, and in particular, the cocoa drink with its famous salty cheese topping. 

Some friends were coming over (with Cantonese red bean buns), and we thought we'd try it out with them, one of whom is a chocolate milk devotee - there is in fact a section in his fridge devoted to chocolate milk, and he is gifted gallons of the stuff for his birthday every year. We had to have a purist try out this concoction!

Cocoa with Rock Salt & Cheese

Adapted from Pepper Ph
Serves 2-3*

  • Chocolate Milk
  • Ice
  • 1\3 cup, whipping cream, chilled
  • 1\2 cup cream cheese spread, at room temperature
  • 1\4 cup sweetened condensed milk, chilled
  • Himalayan pink rock salt (we used fleur de sel, because we had it on hand, and it's a large grain salt we've used as a topping for desserts in the past)

*I didn't notice the serving suggestion of 2-3 and made this recipe for 6 - I think more topping would have been better.

Pour chocolate milk into glasses at about halfway, then put enough ice to bring it up to fill the glass 3\4 full. Do this before making the topping, as the intent is to have the milk slightly watered down.

Whip the whipping cream until it is the consistency of thick syrup - keep an eye on it - you don't want fully whipped cream. Add the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk, and whip until smooth and creamy. 

Add 2-3 spoonfuls of cream topping to your chocolate milk. Sprinkle with salt. Serve with a spoon, and enjoy!

The consensus:great drink! The bite of salt complements the sweetness of the cheese topping and cocoa; the creaminess of the topping makes the chocolate milk a delicious, decadent and filling treat. 

Our friend was worried that this topping would ruin his chocolate milk - and was quite surprised to find himself loving it. We'll definitely be making, and enjoying, this again!


  1. Wow, I'll keep an eye out for that when I'm in China next month! Sounds interesting.

    1. I'd love to hear about it if you try it out :)

  2. This sounds incredible!!! I cannot wait to try it!!! :)

    1. We are definitely due for another tasting!

  3. I have never heard of that drink -- We lived in Asia for years. Chinese don't eat much cheese so that surprised me.

    1. No, I can't even imagine cheese with Chinese food. From what I've read, the drink is a fairly new phenomenon (a few years), especially geared to a younger demographic.


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