Sunday, January 5, 2014

Fancy Coffee at Home (or, Take That, Starbucks)

I drink coffee everyday. I have since I was about 16 or 17. My family are all big coffee drinkers, and I remember sneaking my mom's coffee when I was little. After I saw Clueless, I tried drinking it as often as I could because I hoped it would stunt my growth. Unlike Cher, I did not want to be 5'10" like Cindy Crawford. Ha, did that backfire.

During the week, I usually allot just enough time in the morning to get dressed, brush my teeth, and get to the office before my caffeine headache kicks in. When I'm at home, my Cuisinart Grind n Brew is my best friend. I've experimented with different ways to drink coffee, including all the coffee-house espresso drink varieties, and ways to brew at home. The best at home coffee I've had, I'd have to say, was when I stayed in Paris. Every morning, the father of the kids I nannied would make coffee in a pour-over style coffee maker, and serve it with warmed milk. That coffee was the best way to start the day. I mean, waking up in an uber-hip Bohemian Paris apartment was the best way to start the day, but the coffee was pretty choice, too.

So hip.

But this new Latte at Home technique comes close. It doesn't matter how late I am to this party, this shit is fancy, and so much easier/less taxing than driving to and waiting in line and spending $6 at Starbucks.

While it's not a true latte, (I don't have an espresso maker), it's steamed and frothed milk mixed with extra strong coffee, and there's something richer and tastier than making a cup and mixing in cold half n half or powdered creamer. Typically, I tend more toward the latter. As I get older, my dairy tolerance gets smaller and smaller, which is a tragedy in itself.

The only special tool you need for this is a milk frother, which you can pick up at Wal-Mart for like, $9, or order through Amazon for anywhere from $10-40. The one I have is from Mellita, and it runs on 2 AA batteries. My parents got it for me years ago, and I've taken it with me everywhere I've lived, but it's always sat in a kitchen drawer, waiting to be used. All I can say is, I'm sad I waited this long.

Also, pro-tip: Using a cup and saucer just like, does something for the soul. I can't explain it. Adding a fancy touch to something you do every day sends your ill-used Fancy Glad into hyper drive. It just feels nicer.

Tools of the trade: cup and saucer, milk (or half n half) spoon, butter knife, milk frother, microwave safe measuring cup 

Measure out a 1/2 cup of milk or HnH

Microwave it until it's steaming, but not boiling (boiling messes up the froth). I find 1:30 works for me, but keep an eye on it just incase.

Put the frother in the milk, THEN turn it on (or do it the other way and make a mess), and move it up and down for about 10 seconds.


Use a knife to hold back the froth while you pour as much steamed milk or HnH as you like.

Remaining Froth

Pour in as much coffee as you'd like, and stir. This is also where I add sugar. 

Start spooning on the remaining Froth. You can go back and re-Froth if you need to.

Keep spooning...

A little more...

Almost done!

Et voila!
Woo, derpy faces and fancy coffee! 

You can also top it off with cinnamon, nutmeg, honey, etc. It's not my thing, but spice your heart out. Also also, you can substitute hot chocolate or hot tea in place of coffee, and the results are still delicious. Have you had a hot tea latte? You really should.

So I'll be off, enjoying some fancy coffee at home while I watch another episode of Sister Wives, because that's how I roll

How do you make your coffee?


Bad flight attendant said...

When I was coming home from Vegas with Mary, the flight attendant asked the passenger in front of us what he wanted to drink. He said coffee. She then asked how do you like your coffee? He replied with: "I like my coffee like I like my women..." Automatically everyone became uncomfortable with hopes that he did not follow that with something racist. He then said to the very uncomfortable flight attendant "I like my coffee like I like my women... Stupid!" I thought it was the funniest thing I'd ever heard up to that point. The flight attendant thought otherwise...

Audrey Turner said...

Oh man, that's one of those "so bad it's good" jokes.

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