Make sure the orange is washed well, then use a vegetable peeler to remove the rind from the orange. Combine the orange rind with the milk and cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
Bring the milk mixture to a simmer, and once it’s simmering, remove it from the heat and cover the pan with a lid. Let the mixture sit for at least 30 minutes, and up to 60 minutes—the longer it sits, the more flavorful it becomes.
Use a slotted spoon to remove the pieces of orange rind, and add the chopped chocolate and pinch of salt to the saucepan. Place the pan back over medium heat, and whisk often as the mixture heats up. Continue to whisk and cook the hot chocolate until the chocolate is melted and everything is smooth and homogenous.
Serve the hot chocolate in small cups, topped with the garnishes of your choice. Whipped cream and chocolate curls are my favorite way to enjoy it!
For a shortcut version, omit the orange rind and combine all other ingredients plus 1 tsp orange extract in a saucepan. Once everything is heated and combined, taste the hot chocolate and add more orange extract if necessary to get a flavor you like.