Vienna Coffee Company, located locally to Knoxville in Maryville, TN, not only roasts great coffees, they also offer a seasonal drink competition to invent a drink that captures the best of the season. The Knoxville Coffee Examiner, Jim Lindsay, submitted the following recipe for a marshmallow mocha latte and won Vienna's Winter 2010 Seasonal Drink Competition.
The following recipe makes two 10-12 oz. mugs, though it could be halved to make only one at a time. A blender and some means of producing espresso (or concentrated coffee) are all that you'll need in terms of special equipment to make it too, so it can easily be made at home. If you don't have any way to get espresso at home, I'm willing to bet you can talk your favorite barista into making this for you too if you bring the recipe with.
In any case, the inspiration for this recipe came on a day when I was coming in out of some of East Tennessee's recent snowfall and wanted something warm like hot chocolate but motivating like coffee. Because of the kids, the thought of marshmallows and hot cocoa have become almost inseparable, and so I knew what i needed to do.
Award-winning homemade marshmallow mocha latte - Ingredients:
- 8 oz. espresso or concentrated coffee (e.g. from a Moka pot) [Rec: Vienna Coffee Company's Organic Stone Church Blend]
- 1 cup marshmallows
- 1 tsp. premium unsweetened cocoa powder [rec: Ghirardelli]
- 1 tbsp. turbinado, divided in half
- 12 oz. whole milk or whole milk and half and half mixed to taste [Rec: 2-to-1 milk to half and half]
- just a splash of premium vanilla extract (to taste), approx. one half-teaspoon
- In a small saucepan, heat the milk mixture, half of the sugar, vanilla, and cocoa powder over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.
- Meanwhile, prepare the espresso and add the other half of the sugar. Stir to combine.
- When the milk mixture just starts to steam, rinse the marshmallows in a strainer under warm (not hot) water for about 10 seconds to remove the corn starch and then add them to the warmed milk mixture. Stir for 20-30 seconds.
- Pour milk mixture into a blender, and on medium-high speed, blend the milk mixture for approximately 30 seconds. Meanwhile, divide the coffee mixture evenly between two 12 oz. mugs.
- Add the milk mixture to the mugs, pouring into and on top of the coffee. The foamy marshmallow milk on top will float and pour out mostly last if you're careful, making a nice creamy head on top of the mug.
- Garnish with a few marshmallows and a light dusting of cocoa powder or shaved dark chocolate, or instead top with whipped cream (if desired) with a few marshmallows planted therein and on top, dusted with cocoa powder or shaved dark chocolate. Enjoy hot!
One of the keys to this recipe is rinsing the cornstarch from the marshmallows. Marshmallow fluff (or creme) could be substituted instead to skip this slightly unorthodox step. If marshmallows are used unrinsed, expect an unpleasant flavor of cornstarch throughout the cups.
The Spring 2010 seasonal drink competition over at Vienna Coffee Company is already underway, so get your thinking caps on, order some great Vienna Coffee Co. coffee, and try to come up with a recipe that captures the best of spring in a cup of Joe.
As always, remember to buy locally whenever possible! Vienna makes it easy by making their coffees available all around the greater Knoxville area (see this link for details).
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For similar articles about food and drink by the same author, check out his other Examiner.com position: the Knoxville Gourmet Food Examiner.