After my last post, it rained for two days straight (hallelujah!), and with the rain came a renewed sense of purpose… and a whole lot of coffee drinking.
Bear in mind, I admire folks who can contain themselves to a single cup per day — an early morning jolt, a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, or a post-dessert accompaniment. I also marvel at those who partake of coffee now and then — truly a matter of self-controlled savoring.
As for those who abstain from it altogether, I have nothing but the deepest respect. Coffee isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. :) I also believe our differences are what attract us to each other — seeing how the other half lives, eh? (Cause for celebration, not condemnation!)
As for moi… well, I grew up drinking the stuff. It’s part of who I am.
After all the years The Man Of Few Words and I spent over-the-road drinking “mud,” we’ve pretty much adapted to the constant influx of caffeine. Addicts? No. Acclimated? Yes.
So as not to bounce off the walls with our near-IV consumption of java, our “home brew” falls somewhere between strong enough and weak enough. We’ve also worn out three or four coffeemakers in the course of our eleven year or so marriage. Who’s counting?
(Coffeemakers or anniversaries.)
So as the recent rain fell, coffee was brewed and cups were refilled.
Again and again. Ahhhh…
It seemed appropriate to mark the occasion with something out of the ordinary — something more than just cream and sugar (which I enjoy once in a rare while) — or, at least cream and sugar in a different form. In other words, not your average Joe.
I decided on a variation of my White Chocolate Mocha. Made with a chocolate ganache base, it settled into an amusing (and quite satisfying) two layers.
(Three, counting the chocolate sludge on the bottom…) But again, who’s counting?
Not nearly as sweet as the typical coffee-house version (with the addition of unsweetened chocolate), drinking it was rather like a duel between coffee and chocolate in my mouth. Both of them won.
Two Tone Chocolate Mocha
Freshly brewed black coffee (whatever strength you desire)*
Chocolate Ganache, divided (recipe to follow)
Whipped Chocolate Ganache, for garnish
Chocolate chips, for garnish
For each 6 to 8 ounce cup of coffee, stir in 3 tablespoons of chilled chocolate ganache mixture.
Whip remaining chocolate ganache (see below.)
Top beverage with a dollop of whipped chocolate ganache.
Sprinkle randomly with chocolate chips.
(Note: most of the whipped ganache melted on contact, but that’s okay — I was going to stir it in anyway. Also, all but one of the chocolate chips sank. Oh well.)
*If coffee doesn’t tickle your fancy, try preparing this with hot milk for a grown-up Hot Chocolate.
1/2 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. milk chocolate chips
1/2 oz. (1/2 square) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
In a small saucepan, heat cream just to boiling; remove from heat.
Add chocolate chips and chopped chocolate; let sit for several minutes until softened.
Whisk until combined. (I was in a hurry; mine had residual chocolate “flecks” — not a bad thing.)
Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate until chilled. (I chilled the beaters at the same time, too.)
Reserve half the ganache mixture for stirring into coffee. Store “leftovers” — if any — in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Whip remaining ganache with an electric mixer ’til soft peaks form.
Average Joe, meet Empress Josephine… love at first sip.
Technical difficulties aside, this treat did the trick. I feel right as rain.
Enjoying java in all its glory,