Sunday, November 3, 2013

Mocha Mexicano & A Giveaway (Paleo, Gluten-free, Vegan)


This mocha mexicano is full of warm spices, and packs a subtle punch thanks to a little cayenne pepper.  It's inspired by ingredients from Rodelle Vanilla and Taza's Fire Puncher chocolate.

This summer, my vegan & paleo strawberry ice cream was a runner-up in Rodelle Vanilla's Great American Ice Cream Contest, and the prize was a basket of Rodelle Baking Goodies.  I asked the wonderful folks at Rodelle if they would include a few extra goodies for you all, and they said yes!  I picked up a couple of other treats over at Taza Chocolate yesterday, and am beyond excited to bring you a vanilla and chocolate giveaway.

Prize basket
One winner will receive a prize basket including:
  • Two whole Madagascar Vanilla Beans from Rodelle
  • A 6-ounce bottle of Rodelle Pure Madagascar Vanilla Extract
  • A 2-ounce bottle of Rodelle Organic Chocolate Extract
  • A 2-ounce bottle of Rodelle Anise Extract
  • Two discs of Taza Chocolate's Organic Fire Puncher 70% Dark Chocolate Mexicano (2.7 ounces)
  • A bag of Taza's Organic 55% Dark Chocolate Covered Cacao Nibs (2 ounces)
  • A recipe card for Molten Spiced Chocolate cake and a Direct Trade pamphlet from Taza


Rodelle is such a great company.  They offer a variety of baking essentials, many of which are organic, plus unique products like anise extract and lemon extract.  They also have lots of fabulous recipes on their website.  Their products are made in a wind-powered facility, and a portion of their proceeds support the Trees, Water, and People organization's environmental and reforestation initiatives.


Taza Chocolate's factory is right near me in Somerville, Massachusetts, and all their chocolate is organic and stone-ground.  They purchase Direct Trade certified cacao, and their products are free of gluten, dairy, and soy.  That's hard to find in chocolate these days!  I visited the factory store yesterday for their Día de los Muertos celebration--see below for photos of the event and more about Taza.

My mocha mexicano is inspired by their Fire Puncher chocolate, which has quite a kick to it thanks to a bit of chili powder.  Scroll down to see my recipe, or click here to see how to make chocolate mexicano if you can get your hands on some Taza chocolate.


At Taza's día de los muertos celebration, there were food trucks, mariachis, face painters, and lots of samples.  One of my friends got a plantain cone filled with chicken, bacon, and pineapple from Latin Spoon.  She had to wait for almost 30 minutes for it, but it looks like it was worth it.


This pork taco from Happy Taco may not look like much, but it had sriracha caramel sauce on it!  I was totally sold on that sauce and need to figure out the recipe.


Inside Taza's store, there were more samples and lots of fun decorations.  I didn't actually tour the factory since it was so crowded, but plan to go back soon to see the chocolate making in action.  You can even buy a whole cacao pod there!  I thought about buying one for the giveaway, but wasn't sure if it was the most user-friendly prize, so I opted for already-made chocolate products instead.


Without further ado, here's the mocha mexicano recipe.  Feel free to leave out the cayenne if you're not into that, or substitute your favorite chili powder.  You can also replace the coffee with more milk to make a Mexican hot chocolate, but you might need a little more cocoa to amp up the flavor.

Ingredients (makes a generous mocha for one):

1 tablespoon cocoa (I used Rodelle's Dutch Process Cocoa)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon chocolate extract (optional)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Pinch of salt
4 teaspoons coconut sugar or brown sugar, or to taste
1/2 cup hot coffee
1 cup hot milk or almond milk

In the bottom of a large mug, place the cocoa, extracts, spices, salt, and sugar.  Add the hot coffee, and let the mixture sit for a minute so the cocoa can bloom (sitting in hot liquid brings out the chocolate flavor).  Stir until everything is dissolved.  Add the hot milk and stir again.  Adjust seasonings as desired and serve hot.


This giveaway has ended.  Thank you to everyone who entered!  The winner was Christopher S.  I have another giveaway in the works for next month, so stay tuned!

**Did you know you can support A Calculated Whisk by clicking here to visit Amazon for your holiday shopping?  When you access Amazon through my link, I receive a very small commission based on any items you purchase.  It won't affect the prices you pay at all.  Thank you so much for your support!

64 comments:

  1. I'm super intrigued by the anise extract!

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    1. Me too! I think anise tastes like licorice, which I'm not really a fan of, but a touch of the extract might be great in Mexican cookies or something like that.

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  2. Replies
    1. I love vanilla, too--I like to have lots of vanilla extract on hand so I can put a few drops in my coffee every morning :).

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  3. A 2-ounce bottle of Rodelle Organic Chocolate Extract!!!!
    say no more....i'm in heaven!!! what a treat!!
    I've got to visit Taza!!!! please let me win!!! :) heehee!!!

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    1. Haha :) You should definitely visit Taza!

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  4. I can always use more vanilla!
    Debi @ Life Currents

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    1. Me too! Have you tried making your own? It's super easy. I have a post about it here: http://www.acalculatedwhisk.com/2013/05/make-your-own-vanilla-extract.html

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  5. I would love the Taza Fire Puncher Dark Chocolate and I would use it to make brownies!

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    1. What a great idea! I bet spicy brownies would be amazing.

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  6. Chocolate, Vanilla, and Anise are wonderful!! and Molten Spiced Chocolate cake recipe. Heaven!!

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    1. I agree! I'm definitely going to try to make a gluten-free version of that cake :)

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  7. I'm most excited about the vanilla beans! They are so expensive, but I love to use them in my sugar (for vanilla sugar), homemade egg nog, hot chocolate, pie crust, and more!

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    1. I've been wanting to try vanilla sugar; I'm planning to make some for holiday gifts. Vanilla beans in pie crust is an awesome idea! I'll definitely try that.

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  8. Replies
    1. I'm excited about that, too, but I don't have too many ideas about what to make with it. Let me know if you have any good suggestions!

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  9. I am excited about the vanilla beans. The chocolate would be great, too.
    Ross Olson
    rcolson@charter.net

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  10. Rodelle Pure Madagascar Vanilla Extract for some shortbread

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    1. Yum! I have never made shortbread. Do you have a favorite recipe?

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    2. Rebecca the vanilla and butter are the most important part to shortbread as they make or break the taste. I follow http://kerrygoldusa.com/recipe/butter-shortbread-petticoat-tails/ and use their butter

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    3. Thanks! I love Kerrygold butter :)

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  11. I use vanilla in just about everything, so I'd go crazy with that, but I'd be most interested to try something with the Two discs of Taza Chocolate's Organic Fire Puncher 70% Dark Chocolate Mexicano. I'm thinking biscotti maybe? Saw this giveaway posted on Rodelle's Facebook page. It's my first time seeing your blog, and I can't wait to wander around a bit. I was surprised to see you're near Somerville. I live in NY now but grew up in Hingham. I always enjoy following bloggers from areas I've lived in. That way it's like getting a free gift with purchase...pick up some great recipes along the way and keep up on what's going on in the area. :)

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    1. Biscotti--what a great idea! Another thing I haven't made yet :). Glad you enjoyed hearing about the Taza event. I'm trying to make it out to more of Boston's foodie events, so stay tuned!

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  12. Vanilla and chocolate equals brownies!!

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  13. I'm most excited about the whole Madagascar Vanilla Beans from Rodelle ... I'd use them right away to make some vanilla custard!

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    1. Mmm, what a fabulous idea! Do you have a favorite custard recipe?

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  14. the vanilla beans as I have never used them before - though I don't know what I would make with them just now.

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    1. Vanilla beans are good in pretty much anything that calls for vanilla extract! I especially like them in white or yellow cakes/muffins/cupcakes so you can see the little dots of bean.

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  15. I love vanilla. I would love to win this :)

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    1. Me too! Some people think vanilla is boring, but I love it!

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  16. That sounds lovely, but most of all I'm just very happy I found your blog through this recipe :D

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    1. Thanks, Charissa! Your comment made me so happy! :)

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  17. I'm definitely going to try this! I've been searching for a dairy free Mexican Mocha recipe!!

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    1. Wow, what a coincidence! I hope you like it :)

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  18. I would make chocolate chip cookies with the cacao nibs.

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  19. I would try making my own vanilla paste, since I never have before!
    The mocha sounds wonderful, by the way!

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    1. Thank you! I haven't tried vanilla paste either, but would love to.

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  20. I'm definitely interested in the Chocolate Extract. Of course the first thing I'd make with it is your Mocha Mexicano! Thank you!

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    1. Thanks, Monica! I hope you try the mocha--it's delish even without the chocolate extract :)

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  21. i am excited about the vanilla beans and cocao nibs because i have never used either! my mom and i bake all day on christmas eve so i would incorporate them into one of our cookies or cakes... maybe a vanilla mocha cake with nibs?

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    1. A vanilla mocha cake with nibs would be fabulous! I have never done anything with cacao nibs, and now that you mentioned that idea I might have to go buy some for myself.

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  22. The cacao nibs! I'd put them in homemade Frappuccinos :)

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  23. I'm going to attempt that chocolate cake! You are invited to the taste testing - unless it all goes horribly wrong... ;P

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    1. Haha, thanks! Invite me to the baking part and I will make sure we stay on track...

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  24. so tasty! I can't wait for some cold weather to spice things up!

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    1. Where are you, Heather? I already feel like it's been cold here in Boston for SO long...

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  25. Replies
    1. Have you used them in a recipe before? I haven't, but am thinking I need to see what the hype is all about!

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  26. I'm most excited about the Two whole Madagascar Vanilla Beans from Rodelle and would use them to make ice cream.

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  27. the vanilla beans !!! there is something so great about cooking with real ones :)

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    1. True! :) Or just having them in your cabinet and sniffing them all the time...not that I do that...

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  28. I'm most excited about the chocolate and vanilla extracts. I'd drop them straight into my cappuccinos! I wish I could eat that plantain cone right now. Definitely looks worth the wait.

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    1. I know, right? Every time I look at that picture I wish I'd gotten one of those plantain cones for myself!

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  29. Hi Rebecca,
    I love your beautiful blue mug with the red rim. Do you mind me asking where you purchased it? Thanks so much! I could really go for some spicy hot chocolate right now. Brrrr!!!

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    1. It's from Gourmet Pottery in Waltham, MA!

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    2. I just checked and they don't seem to have a website, but next time I'm there, I can ask if the potter who makes these does online orders. It's my favorite mug!

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  30. Thank you, Becky!! That would be wonderful :-) Stay warm in MA.

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