ANNOUNCING: Change is part of life, and apparently, it's part of blogging, too. As of September 5, 2013, I'm merging The Virtual Goody Plate with Disco Mom Takes on the World and whatever else may henceforth spill from my fingertips (and kitchen), into one great new blog. I hope you'll join me there in exclaiming, "THIS IS AWESOMELAND."

Sunday, December 18, 2011

It's Steamy Sips Week!

I guess it's kind of a tradition in December, to do some kind of "WEEK" - in 2008 it was surprise fillings - wow, so fun.  Last year we did Minty Week and was that ever refreshing!  This year I've been enjoying an eclectic variety of mugged drinks and thought I'd share.  Don't get me wrong - classic hot cocoa is always right.  But for people like me, who don't drink coffee, tea or alcohol, there are still more choices than you might think.  It just takes a little thinking outside the box.  And usually a generous topping of whipped cream. 

But as an intro, I have to give props to my favorite hot chocolate mix of all time: Lake Champlain's Aztec Spicy Hot Chocolate.  The ingredients read: sugar, Dutched cocoa, cinnamon, vanilla and cayenne pepper.  All my favorite things!  It's not that spicy, just wonderfully flavored.  Sometimes I can find it at Whole Foods but usually I just order two cans from Lake Champlain each winter and they get me through the whole year.

So if that's my "everyday" cocoa, then Jacques Torres' Classic Hot Chocolate is my special occasion sip.  It's more expensive, it's much more intense and rich, and it DIE for.  JT does a Wicked hot choc, too, similar to Aztec, but I find it a little too spicy and it overwhelms the chocolate so I prefer his classic.  The mix has big chocolate chunks in it and the mixing ratio is 1/4 cup mix to 1/2 cup like I said, it's intense but sooo delicious and perfect.  JT has outrageous shipping but luckily I grabbed a can on my trip to NY in November, phew!

I also love peppermint hot chocolate from Starbucks, and I saw McDonald's serves some now too - I haven't tried it but I am dubious. 

Have you ever gotten a "steamer" at Starbucks?  It's just hot frothy milk with a flavor in it, no chocolate.  I love Irish cream - amazing! - and I recently tried gingerbread which was pretty good, too.  So comforting and warming.  But if that ain't your thing, this is the best time of year for other flavor drinks - case in point, this refrigerator case at Target.  There are eggnog, gingerbread, sugar cookie and peppermint creamers.  Plus red velvet and chocolate mint flavored milks, and lots of eggnog. 

OK so I don't have them all decided yet, but a few sips you have to look forward to this week include: hot caramel apple cider, Nutella hot chocolate, cranberry tea, the best homemade hot cocoa mix I've ever had...and more!

One final note - I only have one kind of clear mug, and like I said many of the drinks have whipped cream on top, so many of them actually look quite similar.  Just bear with me and read the recipes; I hope they speak for themselves!

1 comment:

Amy said...

Chilli hot chocolate (chilli chocolate in fact) has to be one of my all time favourite things and i'm always up for a warming brew so looking forward to reading this! May have to go make one now actually xXx

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