Trying to save a little extra money over the holidays but still want your Peppermint Mocha fix from Starbucks? Well, this isn't an exact recipe, but it comes close, and costs a lot less!
I don't even have an espresso maker - I just use a stovetop espresso maker like this one. I also did not want to buy a bottle of peppermint syrup as it would take me forever to go through one, so instead I made peppermint simple syrup, and this worked out fine. I had a little bit of the peppermint simple syrup leftover, and put that in some bourbon to make a quasi-julep, and it was yummy.
DIY Peppermint Mocha
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
3 tablespoons powdered cocoa - run it through a sifter or fine wire strainer to remove lumps
3 tablespoons warm water
1/2 cup hot espresso
1 1/2 cups hot milk or soy milk (you can microwave it or heat it on the stovetop.)
Whipped cream (optional)
In a small saucepan, stir together the water and sugar, bringing to a soft boil, stirring frequently, until the sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to a low simmer and add the peppermint extract, and simmer for 20 minutes.
In a large mug add the cocoa and water and mix together until a creamy paste forms. Add the espresso on top, then 1 1/2 teaspoon of the peppermint simple syrup, and stir to mix. Top the mug off with the hot milk and stir. If desired, add whipped cream. Enjoy!
(Image: Kathryn Hill)