A few weeks ago we got together with some friends here in Portland, Oregon to celebrate a recent electoral victory that made recreational marijuana legal in this state. We decided to mark this momentous occasion the only real way we know how: by combining coffee and marijuana into a delicious drink.
That delicious drink? The mocha—a subtly simple and oft-maligned combination of espresso, milk, and chocolate.
In the spirit of sharing, below we’re offering a step-by-step guide on how to make a magical marijuana mocha yourself. Please note that we only suggest you follow this tutorial if you live somewhere marijuana is legal. We are not advocating for felonious activities, as going to jail would make these mochas decidedly less magical—and let’s not even talk about prison espresso.
Step one: Acquire one marijuana chocolate bar.
Using a well-made cannabis chocolate bar similar to this one, in combination with a non-marijuana chocolate substance of your choice, you’re going to make a nice chocolate ganache concoction. As with all things edible marijuana, please pay attention to doses! A “dose” is typically ~.10mg of THC, and be careful—one bar can contain 16 or more doses. All legal cannabis edibles are clearly labeled with dosage amounts and recommended serving sizes, and we strongly advise you to follow this information closely. You don’t want to wind up like that poor lady from The New York Times.
Step two: Set up your espresso station.
For this recipe, we had access to a really beautiful home barista set up, the kind you can purchase at basically any gas station or corner store here in Portland. That set-up includes a lovely, wood-paneled espresso machine and state-of-the-art grinder, but somehow we’ve forgotten the particulars. For the espresso itself, we suggest using a balanced, capable blend that will stand up well with milk, chocolate, and cannabinoids. For this adventure we chose Water Avenue Coffee‘s El Toro blend, currently comprised of coffees from El Salvador, Ethiopian, and Nicaragua. A quality whole milk, like that from Sunshine Dairy here in Portland, is also essential. Equip yourself with as comparable an espresso-brewing situation as you can, and roll up your sleeves and get to work.
Step three: Melt the chocolate.
To melt the chocolate, we first made a double boiler on a household stovetop. Basically you’re going to boil some water, put a vessel on top of that water to create a seal, and then set your chopped-up pieces of magical chocolate in the pan. This way you’ll be able to heat the chocolate without burning it or putting it in contact with water.
In total we put about half of our magical chocolate bar into the pan. Chocolates may vary in strength, and our individual bar may not yield the same weight as yours.
Let the chocolate melt down on its own in the double boiler, with the stove heat on medium. We’re just making a ganache here, people, and this is no different than how it’s done in many cafes for non-medicated mochas.
Step four: Combine the chocolates.
Melting half the bar yielded around 15 grams of magical ganache. From there, we transferred the magic stuff to a little cup and cut it with another 40 grams of our favorite non-magical pre-made chocolate ganache syrup, made by Ghiradelli, in order to create a magical mocha sauce that would be appropriately chocolatey without being too intensely cannabisinated.
Look at aaaaaall that chocolate. Mix it up, stir it up good–things are getting super serious now. You have just created a little brown demitasse full of 55 grams of the most chocolatey, weediest ganache known to man. You can make between 8 and 10 magical mochas out of this delightful mixture—use around 7 grams per mocha—and if someone wants to try a little half dose, just use 3 grams of your magic mixture and add another 4 grams of whatever non-medicated ganache you have around. And remember: you never have to finish the whole mocha.
Step five: Make a mocha.
Weigh out like 7 grams of that magical mixture, and put it in the bottom of a latte cup. Then pull an espresso shot right on top of the chocolate mixture, and stir with a spoon to combine the espresso with the super ganache. The mixture should be pretty liquid-y by the end of your stir.
Then go steam up some milk! Again, we recommend Sunshine Dairy, although they had no part in this project and do not condone its delicious results. We’re going for a total beverage volume of ~5 ounces.
Now pour out a beautiful mocha! Use your latte art skillz.
Step six: Drink a magical medicated marijuana mocha.
You do not have to drink this entire mocha! But if you do, you’ll get buzzy warm fuzzy feelings that kick in a little faster than regular edibles, with full effects felt between twenty minutes to an hour later. Do not operate a motor vehicle after drinking a magical mocha. Do set aside some time to chat with friends, or maybe play some video games. If you’re one of those type-A stoners who like to get shit done, drink one of these and then go work on your website or out in your workshop or something.
We suggest pre-planning some snacks so you don’t have to go anywhere.
And that’s it! Remember friends, moderation is the name of the game here, as with all things. A properly crafted artisanal magic mocha should not be too sweet, with just a hint of dark chocolate and a verdant green note complementing the espresso and steamed milk. Keep your THC ratios conservative so as to not ‘splode your mind or wind up in an uncomfortable situation. The ideal magic mocha should come on like a gentle backrub from a trusted friend, or a steady handshake from a respected colleague, buoying throughout your day. You don’t want this thing kicking like a horse, making you all freaky outie and cursing Sprudge an hour later.
Less is best. Stay chill, and enjoy.