Winter has officially arrived in my neck of the woods. It’s 24 degrees with an expected high of only 28 today. The wind is howling. We had a gorgeous, hot summer and a fabulously mild fall, so lets hope that this winter is a true winter and brings lots and lots of snow.
For the last couple of months I’ve been allowing myself what I consider a very indulgent treat at Starbuck’s. A soy Chai Tea Latte. Indulgent because it has caffeine which my body doesn’t like and non-organic soy which is terrible for pretty much anyone…along with a HEAP of refined sugar and God only knows what else.
*It was brought to my attention by my sweet friend, Megan, after I posted this, that Starbuck’s actually does use non-GMO, organic soy. Ten points for Starbucks!
But it’s those spices that just make me swoon. They are so comforting and calming. I don’t know what it is about them, they just speak to me.
After my last one started to make me feel wired and made my stomach very unhappy, I realized my love affair with Starbuck’s Chai was going to have to end. It was an inevitable breakup, but fun while it lasted.
Luckily, Chai spices are easy to come by and it’s very easy to whip up your own mix to add to whatever you like. This morning I woke with a headache. The result of Romeo, our 75 pound Vizsla, running right into my head while I was laying on the floor in front of the fire last night. He can often be like a goofy, uncoordinated toddler. My neck cracked and this morning I was greeted with an 80 year old neck rather than my already touchy and grouchy 46 year old neck. Not a pleasant way to greet the day. It was also freezing, and the first thing to come to my mind was not BenGay, ibuprofen and water…but “oh I wish I had a hot chai tea latte and a robe warmer”…and a personal masseuse.
Then I remembered what I felt like the last time my lover and I got together and figured that probably wouldn’t be all that fun to add hyper nerves and gut wrenching tummy pain to the headache and neck ache I was already dealing with. Sorry Starbuck’s, but really, it’s not you, it’s me.
Then came the birth of my Coconut Chai Sipping Chocolate. Right there in bed where some of my best recipe ideas are born. Amazing the clarity you have when you kick those toxic lovers out of your life.
And I don’t mind telling you that it is amazing. Have you ever had a sipping chocolate? It’s rich, velvety, and fabulous. The chai spices give it that soothing aroma and taste and take something rather ordinary like chocolate and coconut and make it into a very special sipping event.
For those of you who do not feel like you’re going to jump out of your skin after drinking coffee, I would bet a shot of espresso in this would make you even happier.
This recipe serves 2. Remember it is very rich. But if you don’t feel like sharing, you can pour the other half into a pretty little jar and take it to work with you for an afternoon pick me up. It can be re-heated and served hot, or chilled and then served over ice.
Chai Spice Mix
1 Small Jar
3 teaspoons of Turmeric
4 teaspoons of Cardamom
4 teaspoons of Cloves
4 teaspoons of Allspice
8 teaspoons of Cinnamon
6 teaspoons of Ginger
Measure all ingredients into a small bowl and whisk together until combined. Spoon into a storage jar.
Coconut Chai Sipping Chocolate
1 Can of Full Fat Organic Coconut Milk
3 Ounces of 70% Dark Belgian Chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 Tablespoons of Organic Raw Unfiltered Honey
1 teaspoon of Chai Spice Mix, plus more for sprinkling
Measure all ingredients into a medium saucepan. Heat on medium and whisk until chocolate is completely melted and ingredients are combined. Split between two mugs (or save some for later!) and sprinkle with extra Chai Spice Mix.