My husband recently got a puppy for our family! Liberty, or Libby, has been a blessing and bundle of energy and joy for us! As Stephen is deploying soon, little Libby will keep me company and be a constant reminder of the liberty many Americans fight for each day so that we can enjoy our freedom.
Libby loves shoes, my basil plant on the patio, getting her tummy scratched and of course always keeping us on our feet. She follows me around all day, wherever I go, and sleeps at my feet in the kitchen. Libby does not quite understand the purpose of a walk yet, but is more interested in chasing leaves and eating peanut butter treats. She flops down the stairs and runs into her reflection in the window trying to get outside. I must say she is the cutest dog and receiving lots of love and attention!
There is no need for an alarm clock anymore as Libby wakes up bright and early with the sun at 5:30 in the morning! Needless to say I have been very sleepy recently and in need of a little extra energy. Enjoy our new puppy and this sugar-free iced mocha :)
Iced Coffee with Sugar Free Chocolate Syrup
- Slowly melt all ingredients together on low heat.
- Stir for about 2 minutes until the chocolate mixture becomes a syrup.
- Serve a tablespoon or desired amount over ice and add coffee and cream.
- I usually use left over coffee and store it in a glass container in the refrigerator.
- Store the remaining chocolate syrup in the refrigerator and enjoy as wanted!
- **I use coconut milk to make the syrup as it will last better in the refrigerator.
The California sun can deceptively disguise a chilly winter day. I have been finding myself sipping hot coffee with cream throughout the day to warm up. However, this chai tea is caffeine free and a great drink in the afternoons as a warm cup of spice! I used red rooibos loose leaf tea I bought at the local health food store, however you could use herbal tea bags or black tea as well.
The dried spices give a Christmas in a cup feel and are way cheeper to buy than an afternoon trip to Starbucks (and with way less sugar!). Rooibos, a popular African tea, actually contains many antioxidants and some Vitamin C.
6 cups water
9 tablespoons loose leaf tea (9 tea bags)
3 cinnamon sticks
3 star anise
2 teaspoon whole cloves
1 vanilla bean
4 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger
1 teaspoon crushed cardamom pods
1/2 teaspoon whole peppercorns
1 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon fennel
zest of 1 orange
juice of 1 orange
2 tablespoons honey
Heat the water in a pan until it begins to boil. Combine the tea and dry spices in a mixing bowl. Crush the cardamom pods until they split open (easy to do with the flat end of a knife handle). Split the vanilla bean in half and scrape the insides into the bowl with the spices. Add the dry tea and spices except for the orange and honey.
Simmer with lid on lowest heat for 20 minutes. Turn off heat and add orange zest, juice andhoney. Toss in the empty vanilla bean pod. Let the tea mixture steep for 30 minutes.
Strain all ingredients. Let the tea cool and then transfer to glass jars. Concentrate will last in the refrigerator for a week to 10 days.
Serve 1 cup chai concentrate with about 1/2 cup milk, or more depending on your taste buds. Heat ingredients and enjoy! You could also add heavy whipped cream for a tasty, warm treat!