I got this idea (I'm surely not the first) while I was baking and craving hot cocoa while I also happened to be handling mini candy canes.
My girls don't like peppermint hot cocoa (criminal!) so I never make our hot cocoa mix minty, just normal. I use the recipe on the can—sugar, cocoa, and milk. Sometimes I add a little cinnamon or other spices if I am crazy and it's not for them. I wanted a mint flavor and mint extract gets too strong— especially in one cup. I grabbed one mini candy cane, pounded it lightly with a rolling pin, added it to my mug before I added the hot cocoa mix and then poured in the hot milk and stirred like crazy. There were no bits of candy, it melted, and the peppermint flavor was perfect. Just the right amount.
Ideally this post would have included a photo of the finished hot cocoa with whipped cream on top and a light sprinkle of more crushed candy cane, but that didn't happen. In my mind it did and it was beautiful. And we were also out of marshmallows. So I didn't show what it did look like, because, you know, it looked like brown liquid. But it was delicious.
I am SO HAPPY I found this list— the 100 best movies in Netflix Instant over on Paste. This will save me much precious time. There's nothing I dislike more than having just a little time to watch something and then getting stuck trying to figure out what to watch. Maddening! And now triumph!