Originally published November 23, 1997
By Kathy Casey, former Taste contributor
WHEN THE WEATHER gets sour, there is nothing that removes the cold better than a steaming hot cup of coffee with a delicious liqueur. It warms your hands and also warms your psyche.
Whether it’s a traditional Irish coffee to top off a delicious dinner, or my delicious adult Ultimate Triple Chocolate Mocha topped with White Chocolate Cream on a balmy Sunday, these fresh drinks are just what this time of year requires.
For a quick pick-me-up when our northwest sky drips gray, try a Hot Buttered Rummy Espresso. The dough for this Latte Land concoction is made with instant espresso powder and can be kept refrigerated for up to a week or frozen for up to a month. It’s my favorite thing to bring to a party at this time of year. Just hold a kettle of water on the back burner. Guests can put some of the dough in a mug, sprinkle some rum in (I like Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum best) and swirl in some hot water. Add a lemon twist, and here!
It is always a good time to enjoy fresh coffee drinks with friends. Try making an evening coffee drink buffet – it’s an easy way to celebrate without a lot of preparation. Choose three to four specialty coffee drinks for an office get-together, après-ski party or after-shopping socially. Designate one person as a beverage preparer, or if guests make their own, it’s fun to write coffee recipe cards and put them in frames on your display table.
Think about decorating your drinks. Crush peppermint sweets over whipped cream on coffee drinks, or even put in a candy bar for an innovative way to flick.
You can use chocolate or caramel syrup in a squeeze bottle to write a word, draw a cool design or make a curl on top of coffee drinks crowned with steamed milk foam or whipped cream. Apply a sprinkle of cocoa powder or a sprinkle of shaved chocolate curls or nonpareils (small, colored candy balls) to add a simple, fun touch.
For a bubbly presentation, sprinkle edible mica, which is available in most well-stocked cake decorating shops, on whipped cream-puffed coffee.
If you serve brewed or French-squeezed coffee to an elegant dinner party, you can allow guests to customize their coffee. Include small containers of goodies, such as whipped cream flavored with Grand Marnier or Bailey’s Irish Cream, shaved chocolate or chocolate cigarettes, demerara sugar or cracked cinnamon sticks to swim with. White chocolate cream would be a tempting addition.
With these ideas to get your creative juices going, I’m sure you will encourage your winter gatherings.
The ultimate triple chocolate mocha
Make 1 drink
2 tablespoons Dilettante Chocolate Ephemere Sauce (or substitute another high quality chocolate sauce)
1 ounce Godiva chocolate liqueur
½ ounce brandy
6 ounces freshly brewed hot coffee
White chocolate cream (recipe follows)
Shaved dark chocolate or cocoa powder to sprinkle
Put chocolate sauce, Godiva liqueur and brandy in a coffee glass or mug. Fill with coffee and stir to dissolve the chocolate sauce. Top with a dab of white chocolate cream, and sprinkle with shaved chocolate or cocoa powder.
White chocolate cream
Tops around 8 coffee drinks
3 ounces white chocolate of high quality, cut into small pieces
1 cup heavy cream
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a double boiler or over low heat in the microwave until it has just melted, then whip the cream in. Cool the mixture, then whip until soft peaks form. Be careful not to over-whip; the mixture breaks easily.
Hot Buttered Rummy Espresso
Make 1 drink
3 tablespoons Hot Buttered Espresso Mixture (recipe follows)
1 ounce dark or spicy rum
5 ounces of boiling water
Lemon peel twist
Cinnamon stick (optional)
Place Hot Buttered Espresso Mixture and rum in a coffee glass or mug. Stir in boiling water until the dough is dissolved. Twist lemon peel, wipe around the edge of the mug, then move the twist on the drink. Add a cinnamon stick for the ultimate presentation. (Note: This is also deliciously made with brandy instead of rum.)
Hot greased espresso mixture
Make 1 liter (about 20 servings)
½ pounds of butter (2 sticks)
1½ dl light brown brown
1¾ cups powdered sugar
1 pint god vanilla ice cream
1 tablespoon real vanilla extract
1 teaspoon crushed cinnamon
1 teaspoon crushed nutmeg
¼ cup instant espresso granules (such as Medaglia d’Oro brand)
Cream butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl. Mix in ice cream, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and espresso granules until thoroughly mixed. Store refrigerated for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 1 month.
– All recipes copyright 1997 by Kathy Casey