Nothing warms up a frosty nose on a cold winter day better than a warm cup of hot cocoa! Cozy up with this rich, chocolatey, holiday favorite that is easy to make at home and so delicious that you won’t ever go back to store-bought packets and dehydrated marshmallows ever again.
Speaking of marshmallows, move on over mallows, there is a new kid in town. Peppermint cream is a magical concoction that is best described as “frozen whipped cream.” It sets up a bit like ice cream, and you can cut it into fun shapes to add to your cup. You get all the creamy goodness of whip with a delicate frosty texture that melts in your mouth (and in your cocoa). The pepperminty flavor adds a little extra coolness that lingers on your tongue.
Pour cream, half-n-half, cocoa powder and sugar in a small pan. Whisk until well incorporated. Place pan on low heat stirring continuously until the mixture just begins to bubble. Lower the heat and simmer for 3 minutes.
Pour cocoa into a mug. Top with a holiday shaped peppermint cream (see recipe below) and garnish cocoa with a candy cane.
Place a medium mixing bowl in freezer to chill. Pour cream and sugar into bowl. Using an electric mixture, beat until cream begins to form soft peaks. Mix in peppermint extract and combine well.
Place a piece of parchment paper (folded in half) on a baking sheet. Spread cream out onto parchment paper and press into a rectangle about 1 inch thick. Cover with aluminum foil and place in freezer until ready to use.
Remove from freezer. With a holiday shaped cookie cutter (star, gingerbread man, tree, etc.) press into Peppermint Cream and remove. Return to freezer until ready to use. Top each cup of cocoa with a Peppermint Cream.