Saturday, December 24, 2011

Santa's Little Helper

This is the fat man's big day ... the mother of all "all nighters".  As any good college student will tell you, the only way to survive a stress-filled night is to load up on sugar and caffeine.  Personally, I think a little booze helps, too.  Not enough to get loaded, mind you, but just a hint to bring on a bit of mellow in the midst of the holiday hubbub.

So tonight, ditch the traditional milk and cookies and leave Santa a Peppermint Mocha, loaded with serious chocolate, a hint of caffeine, and a wee tipple of peppermint schnapps.  If you live in the great white north, you can make the hot version ... if it's still balmy in your clime, choose the milkshake option.  Top either with whipped cream and crushed candy cane for a festive presentation, and you're sure to earn a permanent spot on the "nice" list.

Peppermint Mocha (Icy Version)

1 pint dark chocolate ice cream
3 Tbs. strong cold coffee
3 Tbs. peppermint schnapps
2 Tbs. whole milk

whipped cream
crushed peppermint candy

Scoop ice cream into your blender.  Top with milk, and let it settle for a minute.  Add coffee and schnapps. Blend well.  Pour into one or two large cold glasses.  Top with whipped cream and crushed candy.  Serve with straws, of course.

Peppermint Mocha (Toasty Version)

3 Tbs. good dark cocoa powder (I prefer Scharffen Berger)
3 Tbs. granulated sugar
pinch salt
1/2 c. strong coffee
1 1/2 c. whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbs. peppermint schnapps

In a saucepan, whisk coffee, cocoa, sugar, and salt over low heat until smooth.  Simmer, whisking, for about 2 minutes, making sure you get the whisk all the way around the pan so nothing scorches.

Add milk, increase heat to medium low, and cook (whisking on occasion) until steam rises and tiny bubbles form around the edge of the pan (about 12 minutes).  DO NOT BOIL.

Add vanilla and schnapps.  Divide between two mugs (if you feel like sharing), top with whipped cream or marshmallow fluff, and sprinkle with crushed candy cane (or hang a cane off the side of the mug to use for stirring).

These recipes can both be doubled easily.


What do you leave out for the Elf-Meister?  Come on, share!

And happy holidays to one and all!!


Wendy is the author of the Mysteries a la Mode. Visit her on the web or on Facebook. She also writes the Pet Boutique Mysteries under the name Annie Knox; you can follow Annie on Facebook, too!


  1. I'd imagine that Santa would be grateful for a drink after a long night flying all over the world! Still fairly balmy here in NC, so I'll give the milkshake version a go. :) Merry Christmas, Wendy!

  2. Merry Christmas to you, too, Elizabeth!

  3. It's cold and rainy here today, so I'll go with the toasty version! I have a huge selection of cookies, peppermink bark, fudge, cheese rounds, party mix, spice cake and a Trifle.

    Happiest of Holidays to you Wendy, and to everyone else here in the kitchen!

  4. Wendy, Santa got a glass of milk, some homemade sugar cookies, and his reindeer got a few carrots. Yum! Needless to say, children's faces this morning are a-beam.

    Merry Merry to all of you!

    ~Avery aka Daryl

  5. A belated "Merry Christmas" to everyone! We always leave homemade sugar cookies and Coke for Santa. We sometimes get the little bottles if we can find them, and for the past few years Coke has also had cute round Christmas-y plastic bottles, which is what we left him this year.