Peppermint Mocha

Rain, rain, go away, but peppermint mocha, you can stay.

Who says you can’t have dessert for breakfast? not me! I think a little treat here and there is the ONLY way to keep your healthy eating on track. If you deprive yourself of the goods, you’ll end up in a diabetic coma before noon because you made a pitstop at Susie’s Shortbreads and ate them out of house and home. I’m not sure if it is raining where you are blog reader, but it’s raining buckets along the East Coast, so this hot treat is very apropos for today’s stormy weather. Bundle up, put on a pot of coffee, and let it rain! Let it rain! Let it rain!

A peppermint mocha is a great option for serving at a holiday party or after a delicious holiday meal. Because it combines both coffee (bitter) and hot chocolate (sweet), it’s not overly rich, but it is arguably just enough to kill those sweet tooth cravings.  
If serving with dinner feel free to use one of these options to top it off: 
Sans alcohol, this recipe also makes a great Saturday or Sunday afternoon option. Rather than fuelling the fire of the starbuckization of our global world you could save your money and make your own coffee at home. I’m not anti-starbucks, but I do think people should be informed of where they are sending their dollars, so you can make informed decisions.  Realistically if you can keep those dollars by putting in a little elbow grease of your own why not?

Also I think it is just plain fun to make things yourself, you’ll feel so much more of a sense of accomplishment if you play around with things and create them on your own.  Preparing these fancy drinks at home not only saves your pocket book, but also saves you a lot of calories. If you were to purchase a peppermint mocha out somewhere you’d be consuming around 410 calories, and 15 grams of fat which is almost an entire meals worth of calories, and fat people. Invite some friends from upstate, and serve some cookies or biscuits with a peppermint mocha. 

There are a few healthy adaptations to this delectable little treat: I used non-fat soy milk for the frothy topping, and I also used a calorie reduced hot chocolate mix. With the sweetness of the hot chocolate and soy milk you don’t need to add any extra sugar. The candy cane sprinkles on top are minimal. 

Rough estimate calorie breakdown:
Coffee – 10 calories
Fat Free Soy Milk (So Good) – 35 calories maybe even less depending on how much you use. 
Hot Chocolate mix- 45 calories per serving (3 tablespoons). 
Total: 90 calories          Preparing at home calorie savings: 320 calories

**Not sure how to account for the sprinkles or the mint extract, but I’m going to go ahead and assume that they don’t add up to be more 320 calories which what you have left over in calories from these small adaptations. And hey! I’ll take those extra calories where ever I can get em! More room for cake!

Here’s how to make this delicious dessert of a drink.

You will need: 

Coffee (your choice)
Hot Chocolate mix (used reduced cal)
1/4 tsp Mint Extract (**)
1/4 cup Skim Milk (or Soy milk)
Crushed Candy Canes (avail at Bulk Barn)
Mint Chocolate candies (optional)
Milk frother or milk steamer (to make the foam)

**you can also use peppermint syrup I didn’t have any, so I used the extract I had from the candy cane cookies I baked (recipe link below). Be careful mint extract is potent, and don’t under any circumstances use both; peppermint is very strong, so less is ALWAYS more. Add a little and then adjust to taste. I used about half a capful. 

Make coffee or espresso according to standard directions. I have a Keurig Coffee machine, so I literally pop a little cup in and it’s ready in under a minute. Obviously if you are making coffee for a group this would not be the ideal method, so go for the good old coffee pot method here. When preparing for a large group of people prepare coffee and hot chocolate and combine in slow cooker, and allow for milk and alcohol as options on the side. 

Combine your coffee and hot chocolate; you can play around with ratios of coffee to hot chocolate. I love love love coffee so I do 3/4 coffee, and 1/4 hot chocolate. Be sure to leave room for steamed milk.  

Add peppermint syrup/ or peppermint flavoured liqueurs; do not use both. 

Top with steamed milk: If you don’t have a milk steamer you can heat your milk in the microwave or over the stove, and use a hand frother to foam it up. DO NOT let the milk come to a boil because it will curdle, and then you should not drink it. If cooking over the stove heat milk in a pot over a medium heat until little bubbles form around the edges of the pot. Remove from heat, and use hand frother to foam then serve. 

Milk Steamer 

Battery operated frother 
Add crushed candy canes as a garnish. Crushed candy canes are available for purchase at Bulk Barn during the holiday season, don’t expect to get them there in the summer 🙁 I’ve tried. But if you happen to have some peppermint candy canes lying around, put them into a ziploc bag (make sure it is sealed) and smash them with a hammer and voila you have yourself some crushed candy canes!

Serve immediately! and enjoy!

This might be candy cane overkill (as if that were possible), but here is a recipe for Candy Cane Cookies: 


Happy Wednesday blog readers,

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1 Comment

  • Reply Anna @ SMS_Style November 30, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Yummy, think I'll have a go at this one! xxx


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