October 9, 2015

How to Make a Cafe Mocha | Buttered Side Up

So you thought you knew how to make mocha, did you? Good news, so did I.

Me, I normally pull out the instant coffee, pour hot water over it, dump in some Nesquik or a cocoa packet and there's my "mocha".

But this! Now this is going the extra mile!

I stumbled upon the recipe a while back when I happened to glance at the computer in passing and this recipe was open. I read it and looked at the pictures.

Boy do pictures help!

This recipe (or, the pictures in this recipe) looked absolutely delicious! I decided this would definitely be on my "To Try" page.

And it's about to stop being on my "To Try" page.

Or at least moved to "Already Tried" page.

Just kidding, don't have one of those.

So, anyway, I was thinking about a good, strong cup of coffee. Well, as you most likely know, instant just doesn't meet those standards. So I got to thinking and then I thought hey you know what shine Google, I don't need to look up "delicious simple coffee"! ...or something along those lines (yes, I admit it, that was what I was going to do if I couldn't think up a recipe)...

because I had a brilliant idea!

Or something along those lines.

Well, I knew I hadn't made a "To Try" page for nothing. I just looked through the list but do you know, I only have two recipes (coincidentally both from Buttered Side Up) with a coffee base!

Like, woht.

So, ok, at least I have two, even though that's not much. But my resolve: to get more coffee recipes on my "To Try" page that are actually doable and makeable and yummyable!

No, not "yummyable".

Forget I said that.

So, that was my big ordeal to find a recipe, and then there was my big ordeal to make the recipe, which is a totally different story.

As you should know if you've read the Buttered Side Up post, she lists two options for this drink: one that is milder and sweeter and one that is more intense. I thought I would try the more intense one because, well, that is what I was looking for in the first place. But then I thought about it (yes, I actually thought about it) and realized that it was probably harder or longer or required more equipment that I don't have (and probably never will have) so if that was the case, I would make the milder, sweeter version. *tear*.

More about that later.

Another thing she has is a notice sort of thing. She likes her coffee frothier. Because who doesn't. But she actually as equipment and I do not. So, instead of buying something on Amazon and waiting two days for it to arrive (two days is a long time for a coffee drink that was supposed to be quick), I decided I would just use a whisk. Yes, whisks do work because I used to always drink a frothy coffee and I would just dump in a bunch of cream and whisk away.

No, I was not fat. I just liked fat.

Or, fatty foods. Same difference.

And I don't have chocolate syrup so I'm using unsweetened cocoa because believe me I've got plenty of that. And maple syrup? Have that too. And since I'm not using chocolate syrup, I don't have to cut down or take away the maple syrup. *oh joy*.

She also says "I actually don't use a recipe most of the time when I make a mocha: I make it up as I go. Think of this recipe as a starting place and customize to your liking!"

Will I ever!

And no I don't have a coffee maker because I barely have any equipment.

Having second thoughts on the easiness of this recipe...

But I chose it so I'll stick to it.  I wish I weren't so sticky.

These things decided, I headed to the kitchen, recipe in hand. Well, no, not recipe in hand because I'm using a computer. But same thing, right. As I've always said (as of today): "I came, I saw, I conquered!"

Also, can I just say right now as a side note, I love her dishes.

There. That over, let us go, prepared, into battle!

Boy was it a battle.

First, let me list for you the ingredients and those that I have or don't have (including equipment!).

  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons half and half (in the negative)
  • 1/2 oz. espresso, fresh or cold (no)
  • 1/2 oz. maple syrup (HALF OUNCE!?!? HOLY SMOKES! and NO! at least, not for JUST ONE drink!)
  • 1/8 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (yes)
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream (yes)
  • 2 teaspoons cocoa/cacao powder (positive)  

  • 3/4 cup half and half (no)
  • 3 teaspoons cocoa powder (yes)
  • 4 teaspoons espresso, fresh or cold (neither)    
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons maple syrup (that's more like it! *sigh of relief* YES!)
  • 1/8 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (yes)
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream (yup)  

So, looking at all that, it seems a little obvious that I will, in fact, be doing hers. The stronger version. Yay! So, no, I won't be doing his, I'll be doing what I set out to do in the first place. Which is very nice.

The directions and the way I did them:
  1. I made myself some coffee. I had to make it instant *tear* because it's a big ordeal to make espresso, and I wanted quick, fast, easy, and making espresso doesn't fall under any of those categories. But since it's supposed to be strong, instead of dumping in one spoonful, I dumped in two. Smart thinking am I right? So I made that, covered it with a cloth so that it wouldn't cool off, and set it aside for later.
  2.  Also, I decided that since I had cream and milk, why not mix them? So, I did half and half my way: I made 1/2 cup mixture of milk and cream and then poured it into a measuring cup. Apparently my math is wrong. I've known it for a long time, actually. But it didn't quite fill the 3/4 cup measure. So I had to make more. This time I was tired of it and had no clue how to make it full, so I just used my eyes. Apparently my eyes are wrong too, because there was still a little bit left in the measure. One half of me said oh well and good riddance! the other half said but that's not 3/4 of a cup. My second half won. I mixed up a teeny bit more (splash of cream, dash of milk). Had to do the procedure two more times! After doing that fun process, I dumped it into a small saucepan, and let it get hot.
  3.  While the half-and-half-mixture-made-by-me was getting hot, I was too. I put the cocoa in a mug, poured 4 teaspoons of the instant *errr* over the cocoa, and stirred it just like she said. Of course, being instant, it's not thick at all, so I stared sadly into my thin mix. Oh well. I'll know better in the future if I don't forget.
  4. Then I stirred in the remaining ingredients. No problem-O! And actually 2 1/2 tsp of maple syrup is a lot more than you think so, feeling guilty, I poured about 6 drops back into the container and 2 drops into my mouth. That made me feel better.
  5. Looked at the directions. "Froth milk with hand frother". Or, in my case, a whisk. Check! But I couldn't really froth half and half when it's that shallow, so I poured it into my now-empty instant coffee mug (ha. ha. No, I had wayy over-calculated so I had a 7 oz. cup of coffee. errr. Instead I just poured it into a custard cup, and then a mug because it just barely fit into the custard cup, spilling half of it, and then I had to run and get a rag to mop it all up while it cooled. Errr. Should have used a custard cup to measure the half and half. So then I started to froth it and it splashed onto my arm. Apparently it didn't cool while I went to get a rag. Boy was it hot. All pretty handy dandy right.) and frothed it until my arms called a halt.
  6. As slowly as I could, I poured the frothed milk into the mix of instant coffee, cocoa, and all the other ingredients that I'm not going to waste time listing, but I couldn't pour it slowly without half of it spilling down the sides, onto the counter! So then I just put it into a measuring cup with a spout (I think you use it to do something with gravy...?) which would have been VERY convenient for frothing (all the things I could have done to save time and extra dishes! *groan*) which stinks. Arrrgh. This better be fabulous is all I'm sayin'.
  7. And, since I didn't have whipped cream and probably won't until Thanksgiving (not far off, thank goodness, because I make a special *booze* mixture! ...or, Mom does. but still...), I just drank it without the whipped cream which won't be as good, of course, but it's the next best thing.
  8. Anyway, a couple minutes and a couple hundred dishes later, I sat down to enjoy my mocha. I would have enjoyed it better with whipped cream on top, but what can you do? I know what I can do--make some! Since the cream's best-by date is TOMORROW I decided why not use some of it up today. Better, right. So I made whipped cream (thank heavens not as complicated as the mocha) and sat down once more to fully enjoy my mocha. HA. HA. and more HAs. I didn't make any whipped cream because unfortunately, we were having ice cream sundaes, so no peace. Also, no whipped cream. Sigh.
My thinking: 
even though this was way a pain, it wasn't supposed to be and it was only because of me. I just made it a pain. And it really is delicious, even though it has a weird aftertaste. But I can endure that. I can endure anything, as is apparent after all the stuff I went through to get a cafe mocha.

Anyway, this was pretty good, even if it did have a weird aftertaste.

Also, relations make perfect guinea pigs don't you think?*

Anyway, I urge you to try it and see how you like it.
Scriptina Regular 
P.S. looked at this today (today being the 15th of October) and realized that I've posted 14 coffee recipes! That's ok. More coffee recipes, the better.

*if you don't know what I mean, Google "definition of guinea pig" and read the 2nd definition Google gives for a guinea pig. That's right: "a person or thing used as a subject for experiment."

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