We don’t know about you, but after months of on-and-off snow storms and icy winds belting our neck of the woods, we’re more than ready for a little faux-summer. What better way to channel the warm summer months than into your wine glass?
1/4 oz. Strawberry Monin Syrup
1 oz. Coconut Monin Syrup
4 oz. White Zinfandel wine
3/4 oz. Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice
1 oz. Sweet & Sour Mix
Lemon-Lime Soda to taste
Fresh Strawberry (optional garnish)
Pour white zinfandel, Monin Coconut, Monin Strawberry, ruby red grapefruit juice and sweet & sour mix into a mixing tin. Spindle mix for a two count. Pour over ice. Top with lemon-lime soda and garnish with a strawberry.
The writer of one of our favorite experimental cooking websites, Dog Hill Kitchen, engaged in the Iron Cupcake competition for March, which had coffee as the essential ingredient. The result looked and sounded so delicious, we just had to pass it along to you.
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons +1 teaspoon sugar
- 4 teaspoons cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- a pinch of salt
- 3 tablespoons milk (Silk DHA Enhanced soy for us)
- 1 tablespoon neutral oil
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 4 teaspoons cocoa powder
- 4 teaspoons mini chocolate chips (Enjoy Life chips is my choice)
- 6 tablespoons hot espresso
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Stir together the dry ingredients for the batter (the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, and salt).
- Add the milk, oil and vanilla and stir until a smooth batter forms. Spoon equal amounts into 4 oven safe espresso cups or use 4 other oven safe ramekins or mugs.
- In a small bowl mix together the dry ingredients for the topping (the brown sugar, cocoa, and chocolate chips). Spoon equal amounts of this mixture over the tops of the batter filled cups.
- Place the cups on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
- Pour over the boiling water mixed with espresso powder or hot espresso. I spooned a tablespoon over each and then repeated with the remaining hot liquid until all was distributed evenly.
- Carefully place the baking sheet with cups into the hot oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. The cakes are done when the tops are puffed and set but you should be able to tell that there is pudding settled on the bottom.
- Remove the cups from the oven and cool slightly. Serve warm topped with caramel milk foam, whipped cream, ice cream or eat as is. You could foam some milk using a milk frother like this one.
Caramel Milk Foam
Based on tips from Garrett of Garrett’s Table. Thanks Garrett!
Makes a little over 1 cup of foam
- 2 grams Versawhip 600K (soy protein powder purchased from Willpowder)
- 40 grams of soy milk
- 50 grams caramel syrup (I used syrup from this recipe)
- Whisk together the Versawhip and soy milk together until soft peaks form.
- Drizzle in the caramel syrup and continue whisking until all the syrup is incorporated and the foam is light and frothy.
- Spoon over the cupcakes and serve immediately.
We found this recipe when poking around for a great coffee-inspired version of one of our favorite desserts, the fallen down chocolate cake. These were a great swap out, with their delicious mocha flavor and dense, creamy texture.
Start to finish: 1 hour (25 minutes active) Servings: 4
- 6 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 3 pieces
- 1 ounce bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons whole milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
- Pinch salt
- 3/4 cup weak coffee
- Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 400 F. Coat four 6-ounce ramekins with cooking spray, then arrange them on a rimmed baking sheet.
- In a medium bowl, combine 3 tablespoons of the cocoa, the butter and chocolate. Microwave, stopping often to stir, until smooth, about 1 to 3 minutes. Set the mixture aside to cool slightly.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.
- In another small bowl, combine 3 tablespoons of the granulated sugar, the remaining 3 tablespoons of cocoa and the brown sugar, breaking up any large clumps with your fingers.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the remaining granulated sugar, the milk, vanilla, egg yolk and salt. Whisk in the cooled melted chocolate mixture, followed by the flour mixture, until just combined.
- Divide the batter evenly among the ramekins (about 1/4 cup per ramekin) and smooth the tops. Sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of the cocoa mixture over the batter in each ramekin. Pour 3 tablespoons of the coffee over the cocoa in each ramekin.
- Bake the cakes until puffed and bubbling, about 20 minutes. Let the cakes cool for 15 minutes before serving in the ramekins (the cakes will fall slightly).
Love is in the air today and what better way to top off an intimate V-day dinner than with a molten mocha dip?
- 1 milk chocolate bar (about 3.5 oz.)
- 1/8 cup espresso or coffee
- Dipping item of your choice – strawberries, angel food cake, macaroons, bananas, dried fruit
Conventional method: Break up the chocolate and put in a saucepan with the espresso. Over low heat, stir with a small wire whisk until ingredients are smooth and combined. If the resulting sauce is too thick, add a few drops of water and whisk to blend. Serve in a small bowl with desired fruit and nuts. If fondue becomes cool and thick microwave for 10
seconds and stir, repeat if necessary.
Microwave: Break up the chocolate and put in a plastic bowl with the espresso. Give the mixture of ingredients 10-to 20-second bursts in the microwave, whisking in between. Do this until blended and warm.
Makes 2 to 3 servings.
Source: Green & Blacks Organic Chocolate
He may have been poking fun at the overly complex ordering practices of his fellow Angelenos, but Steve Martin’s humorous cafe scene in LA Story is a (semi-)appropriate backdrop for our tip today: Brewing rich, delicious espresso with just a bit of a kick.
When we’re craving the taste of coffee but still need to get to bed before 2am, we meld together a blend of 1/2 Lavazza Super Crema and 1/2 Lavazza DEK espresso. Mixing the caffeinated with the decaffeinated takes things up a notch, but not the full whammy we usually find at the bottom of our cup. And while Lavazza’s DEK is some of the tastiest decaffeinated coffee out there, we love the added creamy dimension of the Super Crema.
OK, this recipe for Soft-Centered Chocolate Pudding with Espresso sounds ridiculously awesome and we’ll definitely have to try it very, very soon.
- 8 ounces dark (bittersweet) chocolate, such as Valrhona 65 percent, coarsely chopped or shaved
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, preferably at room temperature
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup hot espresso
- Heat 1 to 2 inches of water in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Combine the chocolate and butter in a metal bowl just big enough to fit over the saucepan without touching the water. Place the bowl over the saucepan; when the chocolate has softened, stir to incorporate it with the melted butter, then add the milk, cream and pepper to taste, mixing well.
- Pour into 4- to 6-ounce ramekins or coffee cups. Place in the freezer, spaced well apart. Check after 45 minutes to see whether the puddings are set. When their edges are firm (which can take from 45 to 90 minutes) but the puddings are still somewhat soft in the middle, they are ready for the next step or can be transferred to the
refrigerator to keep cold until just before serving.
- When ready to serve, dissolve the sugar in the hot espresso. Fill a (clean) turkey baster or large syringe with the hot liquid and inject it into the middle of each cold chocolate pudding, or make room with a spoon and pour the espresso in. Serve immediately.
Recovered from the holiday festivities? Much more chill than December’s counterparts, January’s get-togethers are all about relaxing — and what could be better than sipping a warmed mulled wine to get you in the mood?
We’ve spent hours over the stove top, concocting the perfectly mulled wine…a delicious endeavor that we thought might be short cut by the introduction of Monin’s Chai Tea Concentrate. Containing cloves, cinnamon and ginger — the hallmarks of mulling spices — this concentrate also kicks it up a bit with the addition of green tea extract and orange blossom. If mulled wine is up your alley, we think this is a delicious (and quick) twist on an old favorite!
- 1 bottle full bodied red wine (3.5 cups) — we chose Syrah
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons Monin Chai Tea Concentrate
- Optional: Cinnamon sticks (for garnish)
- In a non-reactive pot, combine wine and chai mixture
- Warm mixture until slightly too hot to the touch
- Serve in your favorite heat-proof glasses or mugs
- Garnish with a cinnamon stick
We love Monin’s Chai Tea concentrate — The deliciously spicy flavors of clove, green tea, cinnamon, ginger and orange blossom melding into a sweet and tangy brew. Not only is it delicious by itself, but it’s a great complement to other flavors — and Grandma’s Blueberry Delight Latte is a perfect example of how to use it to mix up your daily latte.
Combine espresso, Monin Chai, Monin Blueberry and steamed milk in mug.
Top with whipped cream. Dust with brown sugar and pie spice
These delectable delicacies are perfect for dinner party desserts or an afternoon snack — you’ll need to keep them refrigerated.
– For Cupcake Batter –
- 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup cocoa
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
– For Cream Cheese Filling –
- 8 oz. cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon finely ground espresso
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350F and place rack in the center of the oven.
- Line muffin tins with paper liners — muffins should be 2.5 inches in diameter, recipe calls for 20 muffins total.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the dry ingredients with an electric mixer on slow speed.
- Add the liquid ingredients and beat on medium speed until thoroughly mixed and smooth.
- Pour the batter equally into all 20 cupcakes.
- For the filling, put cream cheese, espresso, sugar, salt, egg and vanilla into a medium sized bowl and beat until smooth.
- Stir in mini chocolate chips.
- Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the cream cheese filling into the center of each cupcake.
- Bake the cupcakes for 20 – 25 minutes (monitor closely, they may bake more quickly depending on your oven), or until cupcakes spring back when lightly touched.
- Remove and let cupcakes cool in muffin pan for about 5 minutes, then carefully unmold to cool completely on a wire rack.
- Chow down!
Perk up your favorite cocktail with a little homemade coffee liqueur! Our favorite is a recipe from A.J. Rathbun (author of Luscious Liqueurs):
- 1/4 cup instant espresso powder
- 2 & 1/2 cups light brown sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 cup whole coffee beans of your choice
- 3 cups brandy
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Combine instant espresso powder, sugar and water in a medium-size saucepan over medium-high heat; stir occasionally until mixture is almost at a boil.
- Lower heat & keep it at a low simmer for 5 minutes.
- Turn off heat and let syrup cool completely in the pan.
- Put syrup, coffee beans and brandy in a glass container with a tight lid, stir well.
- Seal and place the container in a cool, dry spot away from sunlight.
- Let mixture sit for 2 weeks — swirling it occasionally.
- After 2 weeks, add vanilla, stir again and reseal. Let it sit again for 2 more weeks in a cool, dry spot away from sunlight.
- Carefully strain liqueur through a double layer of cheesecloth into a pitcher.
- Strain again through two new layers of cheesecloth into one large bottle or a number of smaller bottles — your preference.
Makes about 3 pints.