Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Ancho Chili Chocolate Syrup for Mochas


I made this spiced chocolate syrup to use for mochas; neither of us is a fan of the overly sweet syrups that are available to buy. By making the syrup yourself, it is easy to control the sweetness...in our case just a hint.

My original plan was to make cocoa as it was cold outside yesterday, but then I found the espresso machine in one of the unpacked boxes downstairs. I decided that mochas were the order of the day, and it progressed from there.

I had half a bag of chocolate tea in the cupboard. I had purchased it at the local farmers market, and it was basically cocoa nibs and shells that imparted their flavour once steeped.. I decided to use this as the base of my syrup. I'm definitely more of a coffee person!

In a spice grinder, combine:

1/3 cup chocolate tea
1/3 cup cocoa nibs
1/2 cinnamon stick
1/8 teaspoon ancho chili powder

Grind until fine.

Place the ground mixture into a heavy bottomed saucepan, and add:

1/3 cup sugar

Whisk to combine.

Stir in:

2/3 cup cold water

Slowly bring to a boil, stirring to make sure that the sugar dissolves.

Boil for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and leave for about 2 hours to steep.

The mixture will be grainy at this stage; if that is okay with you, ignore the next step. If you are not a fan of the texture, however, proceed as follows:

Add 1/3 cup water and bring to a boil again. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.

Remove from the heat and strain through a fine strainer ( a tea strainer works well), pressing gently but firmly on the solids to extract as much of the liquid as you can.

You will have a very rich, chocolatey syrup with a hint of sugar and spice.

This is a thin syrup as it has less sugar than a traditional sugar syrup does. It makes up for that with flavour!

Store the syrup in the fridge, tightly covered for up to a week. Use it to flavour coffee or hot chocolate. Enjoy!

To make a large mocha, use:

 2 tablespoons of syrup...

... for each shot of espresso ...

... and top with steamed milk...

  • The syrup as I made it only has a hint of sweetness, and a lovely, deep bittersweet chocolate flavour. If you prefer a sweeter syrup for your coffee, double the amount of sugar.
  • If you do not have chocolate tea, either double the amount of cocoa nibs, or use 2 tablespoons cocoa instead of the tea.
  • Dark chocolate can be exchanged for the cocoa nibs...chips, shavings or finely chopped. Dark chocolate will keep the bittersweet intensity of the cocoa nibs; semi sweet chocolate will cut the bitterness a bit.
  • Instead of adding the final 1/3 cup of water, considering adding rum or brandy.
  • Use the syrup in coffee, hot chocolate, cocktails or drizzle it over ice cream.

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