Guest Author - Gayle E. Santana
Love and Chocolate are the hallmarks of Valentine’s Day. When coffee and chocolate are conjoined to create a unique flavor that is the best of both--sometimes called mocha, what’s not to love?
COFFEE AND CHOCOLATE DECADENCE
If you are looking to spread the love this Valentine’s Day but are short on ideas, here are a few for every price range.
Godiva is known as the top of the line when it comes to chocolate and they don’t disappoint here. According to the website, the Deeply Dark Ganaches Gift Box includes a Dark Coffee Ganache - filled with Costa Rican Coffee and 64% dark cocoa. All I can say is mmmm. Feel free to give me this anytime.
Godiva also has a chocolate crème coffee and Chocolate Comforts Basket. The basket includes: an 8 pc. Gold Ballotin, 4 pc. Truffle Gift Box, our 2008 Limited Edition Lady Godiva Mug, Hot Cocoa Sampler Box, 2 oz. Chocolate Creme Coffee, and Godiva Signature Biscuits.
VALENTINE’S DAY BASKET—MADE WITH LOVE.
If a Godiva basket is too rich for your Valentine’s Day budget, make your own.
Choose one or two inexpensive items and create fanfare. Get an inexpensive basket (a 99 cents store is a great place to find one, and don’t forget to buy a nice looking coffee cup or mug), colored cellophane wrap and ribbon. You could also use a shallow plastic container or box.
Fill the bottom of the basket so your items can be seen easily. Crumpled tissue paper will work well. I’ve even crumpled newspaper and then covered it with a piece of cloth.
Cut hearts of varied sizes and place around the basket. Position your items and then cut a large piece of cellophane—large enough to cradle the basket and gather the excess at the top. Tie with the ribbon and you’ve got a basket that is sure to impress.
Here are some very affordable coffee-chocolate items for your basket. These are some of my favorites:
Ghirardelli Intense Dark Espresso Escape
Trader Joe’s Espresso Chocolates
Chocolate Covered Espresso Beans-NutsOnline has a wonderful assortment of chocolate covered espresso beans. I’ve also found them in Starbucks and other candy specialty shops.
General Foods International Coffee line has some great inexpensive coffees you can add like Swiss White Chocolate, Dark Mayan Chocolate, and Suisse Mocha.
You can also add pre-ground coffee like Ghiradelli Double Chocolate
Coffee. Who better to create a coffee-chocolate combination than Ghirardelli?
LET THEM DRINK COFFEE!
If making baskets doesn’t quite fit the bill for you, here’s another thoughtful thing you can do.
Be a hit at the office or anywhere. Treat everyone to Starbucks White chocolate Mocha. According to the Starbucks website, it contains espresso, creamy white chocolate syrup and whipped cream. I know I wouldn’t be mad at you. Or how about the Dunkin Donuts Mocha Swirl Latte. Wouldn’t mind that either.
LET THEM EAT CAKE!
Even if you can’t bake, you can do this. Buy a chocolate cake mix and follow the directions. Replace the water with strong black coffee and then make this icing.
One box of confectioner’s sugar
½ cup of butter or margarine (soft)
3-4 tablespoons of milk
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1 teaspoon of instant coffee
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
Combine the butter, coffee and cocoa until blended smoothly.
Add all other ingredients adding the sugar in small increments blending until smooth.
Put on cooled cake.
Present with panache and lots of love.
Have a Happy Valentine’s Day!