Reb gave Bambino a list of duties at the beginning of the night shift in the mess hall. These tasks were designed to keep Bambino out of the bakery and not be a distraction for Reb. One of the assignments was to defrost the milk dispenser and sanitize it before loading a new six-gallon carton of milk.
Bambino asked Reb if he could use the old milk carton (which was half full) to make hot chocolate. It was prepared with a mixture of unsweetened cocoa powder, dry non-fat milk and granulated sugar. This dry mix was whisked while fresh hot coffee was slowly added and a silky thick syrup formed.
The milk carton from the dispenser had about three gallons left, and Bambino heated it until it was scalding hot. Then the thickened chocolate/coffee syrup (mocha) was gradually poured in, along with a few cans of evaporated milk. This steaming hot concoction became “Italian Cioccolata,” and it was the best breakfast beverage I ever tasted.