The first time I encountered chocolate spoons to stir my coffee was around 2000 when I was in San Gimignano, Tuscany. There was this out-of-the way small restaurant away from the main hub of the town. My husband and I were hungry and desperate for a restaurant but all the places were completely full and had no hopes of being empty until dinnertime.
It was summertime and the place was crawling with tourists. My mood was not getting any better with the hunger and the heat so before I turned into a monster of moods, my husband saved the day by finding this door that had a really small name on top. I was not even sure that it was a restaurant until we checked and there were tables inside. And there were empty tables. I usually doubt restaurants that have a lot of empty spaces while the others are bursting with patrons. But that was not the time to ruminate about it because we needed to be fed. Badly. The food was marvelous, served by a young chef who seemed to be having fun creating beautiful and delectable dishes in the kitchen. Then our coffee arrived with the chocolate spoons. I was impressed and it sealed the 101 points I would have given the restaurant. Good food and wine, beautiful dishes and chocolate spoons for my coffee. Lovely!
Maybe for that the first image of San Gimignano that comes to mind is the chocolate spoon melting in my hot coffee while I was stirring it, not the beautiful Medieval towers nor the whole town itself that is one of the most beautiful of Italy. I checked my photo archives and I came out with a dozen sorry pictures of the town and us. I even scanned them haphazardly. They were ugly but let me share with you what are passable. I need to go back to San Gimignano to reacquaint myself with the town.
Eventually, over the years, I found an alternative in Lindt. They produce chocolate spoons that I was religiously buying. They are not really cheap so I only use them when I need a bit of chocolate fix in my coffee. When I started cooking, one of the first things that came to mind was chocolate spoons but it kept on getting sidestepped by other recipes. Until I found the last and only silicone spoon mold in Eataly. There it was. Finally, I can make my own chocolate spoons and enjoy stirring my coffee with chocolate goodness (and Nutella!).
The first spoons I made were plain dark chocolate. They gave a chocolatey taste to the coffee but I still put some sugar to sweeten it. My kids loved the idea and ate one each. But it ended there. They didn't want anymore which I found as strange behavior from two chocolate-crazed little people. Then the Nutella idea struck. We are full of these little jars at home because they received a lot of them along with candies from the Befana, the iconic old woman who distributes gifts to the Italian children (the uglier version of Santa Claus but with the same goodness in the heart) during the Epiphany. I did another batch of spoons with Nutella. This time it worked its magic. The sweetness of the Nutella gave the proper sweetness to the coffee. The only problem was, I had to fight off the spoons from my daughter who was munching on them at an incredible speed. I even had to escape with these spoons to take pictures before they vanish in her mouth.
Watch out when you make them. They can be addictive. Don't eat your spoons until you stir them with your coffee! And for the milk drinkers, they should go deliciously well with hot milk too!
Chocolate and Nutella Coffee SpoonsIngredients:
Makes 10 spoons
- 90 g. chocolate
- 2 teaspoons Nutella
- silicone spoon mold
- In a bain-marie (or double boiler), melt chocolate and Nutella together. Mix well.
- As soon as it melts, transfer to the silicone spoon mold. Take away excess chocolate by running the back part of a knife on the mold.
- Refrigerate for at least two hours or until they set.
- Take away from the molds carefully and let them settle to room temperature.
- Use in place of regular coffee spoons to stir hot espresso. Mix well then drink espresso while still hot.
- Store other spoons in airtight containers.