There are so many difficult things in the world: saying sorry, bring peace to the Middle East, adapting books to the big screen, accurately modeling turbulent fluids, wearing orange - I could go on forever.

Living in a world full of such difficulties, it's nice to know that there's the occasional, useful accomplishment that's within anyones reach. I speak primarily of making a chocolate thick shake.

It's a straightforward drink, elegant in its rich simplicity. To make it, you add chocolate and ice cream to milk and blend thoroughly. You need to be sure that it's chocolate (add chocolate), that it's thick (add ice cream), and that it's shaken (blend thoroughly).

Sad to say, even this refuge of culinary ease has its perils. In my wide experience, I've noticed the following:

  • Not chocolate. The give away here is the pale colour, vanilla taste and complete lack of chocolate. Remedy: add chocolate.
  • Not thick. A thick shake that's not thick is flavoured milk. Remedy: add ice cream.
  • Not shaken. Flavoured milk with unsuckable lumps of ice cream in it. Remedy: blend thoroughly.

With diligence, application and a rigorous obedience to the simple principles outlined above, you too can make chocolate thick shakes of excellence.