Category Archives: Velton’s Coffee

Cooking with Kaylie: Espresso Graham Cracker Cookies

Espresso Graham Cracker Cookies IngredientsAs summer inches closer, so do the cravings for the most delicious of summertime foods: S’mores. So, what’s a girl to do when it isn’t quite campfire weather? Make Espresso Graham Cracker Cookies, of course!

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon ground espresso (I used Velton’s Twilight Blend)
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips
  • Cooking spray

Directions

  • Mix butter and sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy
  • Mix in egg and vanilla
  • Stir together ground espresso, flour, graham cracker crumbs, salt, and baking soda in a separate bowl
  • Add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture and stir until well combined
  • Stir in the chocolate chips
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray
  • Drop tablespoons of cookie mixture onto lined cookie sheet, giving each cookie plenty of room to spread out during baking
  • Cook at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned
  • Let cool on cookie sheet for 3-5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack

You may have noticed a few things, like that these cookies don’t have marshmallows Espresso Graham Cracker Cookies(an integral ingredient in s’mores) or that traditional s’mores don’t have espresso in them. All I can say is that 1) everything tastes better when you add espresso and 2) wait until you see Brandi’s beverage on Thursday!

The cookies are pretty delicious and you can’t really go wrong with them. Plus, they’ll hold you over until the weather is nice enough for camping!

Crew Review: Rancilio Bottomless Portafilter

While we have carried a bottomless portafilter for E61 brew heads that also did work fairly well in the Rancilio Silvia’s brew head, it didn’t seal quite as we might like and so there was often a little bit of water leakage over the top that really was just gauche.

Rancilio released their own version for their commercial machines that fits the Silvia, so we gave it a test drive. We did notice a bit of water leaking over the top, but nothing like the former model. And the spurting/spraying/mini-geysers? There were a few present in Gail’s extraction — more of a fine mist — but that’s just a result of channeling, baby.

Wanna see it in action? Watch Gail demonstrate it on our store’s PID-enhanced Silvia.

Cooking with Kaylie: Chocolate Pasta with Espresso Chocolate Sauce

Chocolate Pasta with Espresso Chocolate Sauce IngredientsBy now, you probably know that I like the flavor combination of chocolate and espresso. I’ve done everything from chocolate espresso cookies to chocolate covered espresso beans. So, what could I do that is completely adventurous and incorporates these flavors? Chocolate Pasta with Espresso Chocolate Sauce, of course!

Ingredients

Directions

  • In a saucepan over medium heat, combine espresso and Nutella
  • When Nutella has melted and is combined with the espresso, add in sugar and cook until dissolved
  • Add in vanilla and butter, cooking until butter is melted and completely incorporated
  • Cook pasta according to directions
  • Place pasta on a plate and drizzle with sauce

Chocolate Pasta with Espresso Chocolate SauceI sprinkled powdered sugar on top, though I think some vanilla ice-cream and berries would put this dessert over the top!

I should point out that, while this is quite good, you need to have a certain adventurous spirit to enjoy it. After all, it’s not everyday one comes across dessert pasta!

Cooking with Kaylie: Chocolate Covered Espresso Beans

I’ve always wanted to make chocolate covered espresso beans. They’re delicious and bite Chocolate Covered Espresso Bean Ingredientssized and oh-so-pretty! However, every time I’ve tried, I’ve ended up with sparsely coated beans or something more akin to espresso bean chocolate bark.

So, when I was in the craft store browsing at all the lovely baking and candy making supplies and happened upon a chocolate mold that I thought might make my chocolate covered espresso bean dream a reality, I was sold. Sure, it’s a square mold that makes candy bar shaped chocolate pieces, but it would do the trick.

Ingredients

Directions

  • Place an espresso bean and any mix-ins in each piece of the mold
  • Melt chocolate in microwave in 30-second increments, stirring between intervals
  • Pour chocolate into each piece of the mold, completely filling
  • Place mold in freezer for 5-10 minutes or until chocolate is completely set
  • Remove chocolate from the mold
  • Enjoy!

I made four varieties: dark chocolate covered, milk chocolate covered Chocolate Covered Espresso Beanswith walnuts, milk chocolate covered with coconut and milk chocolate covered with marshmallow. All of them were delicious, though I did hear quite a few murmurs that coconut was the best!

The flavors from Velton’s Twilight worked amazingly well with all the variations. The dark chocolate covered espresso beans had a deep and robust flavor while the milk chocolate varieties were sweeter, which was nicely accentuated by the dark roast.

My only regret? That I didn’t have a sweet chocolate mold that would make the chocolate covered beans look like coffee beans! Oh man, that would have been the icing on the cake. Maybe next time…

Cooking with Kaylie: Candied Espresso Walnuts

This week, I decided to take a departure from my usual chocolate and espresso combo. Well, sort of. You see, I made these really Candied Espresso Walnuts Ingredientsyummy candied espresso walnuts. They were good as is, they really were! But for the next batch I added some chocolate, just to up the ante. The results? Still really delicious candied espresso walnuts.

The moral of that story is twofold: 1) I am clearly obsessed with chocolate and can’t handle a week without it, and 2) With or without chocolate, you really need to try these!

Ingredients

  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons finely ground espresso beans (yep, I used Velton’s Twilight Blend again – it is that good!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large egg white
  • 4 cups walnut halves

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  • Spray baking sheet with vegetable oil
  • Combine sugar, espresso, cinnamon and kosher salt in a bowl
  • In another bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy
  • Dip walnuts in egg mixture, then toss to coat in sugar mixture
  • Spread coated walnuts on cookie sheet in a single layer
  • Bake 5 minutes
  • Stir walnuts, loosening from cookie sheet and rearranging back into a single layer
  • Bake another 5 minutes, or until walnuts are dry to the touch
  • Remove walnuts from oven, loosen with spatula and let cool on baking sheet

Candied Espresso Walnuts
The recipe said they would last in an airtight container for 2 weeks, but we ate them up so fast that I really can’t verify the validity of that statement.

I can say that these were super easy to make (probably the easiest recipe I’ve made so far) and should probably become a staple in your recipe box. I mean, everyone has a recipe box, right?

Cooking with Kaylie: Chocolate Espresso Cookies with Walnuts

Chocolate Espresso Cookies IngredientsThere’s something you should know about me. Ready for it? I love community recipe sites. Seriously. I can spend a whole weekend browsing through them and bookmarking 100+ recipes that I want to make. Sure, I usually only cook one or two before I completely forget about them and start the process over again, but I still get an odd sense of accomplishment out of it.

That being said, I recently found a recipe for Chocolate Espresso Cookies and bookmarked it. Then I started doing these weekly blog posts and I finally had a reason to make them. I knew all that bookmarking would pay off …

Ingredients

  • 3 (1-ounce) squares of unsweetened chocolate
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided in half
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons finely ground espresso beans (I used Velton’s Twilight Blend)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Line cookie sheets with parchment paper
  • Melt together unsweetened chocolate, 1 cup of the chocolate chip and butter. Stir occasionally until melted. You can do this in a double boiler or in the microwave (in small time increments and keeping a close eye on it).
  • In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until thoroughly combined, about 2-3 minutes
  • Mix in the ground espresso
  • Add the chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and mix well
  • Sift together the flour and baking powder, then stir into the egg mixture
  • Stir in the remaining chocolate chips and walnuts
  • Drop dough by the tablespoon onto cookie sheets, leaving room for expansion during baking
  • Bake 10-12 minutes or until cookie tops have a crackled appearance
  • Cool on baking sheets

Chocolate Espresso CookiesThese really were amazing. Cookie on the outside and brownie on the inside, all with just enough espresso to make your taste buds happy! The Seattle Coffee Gear team gobbled them up in no time and Gail even had one with each of her two morning coffees. Yeah, they were that good.

Now, what are you waiting for? Go get your bake on!

Compare: Airscape vs. Coffee Bean Vac

In the world of coffee bean storage, do either of these devices do a better job of keeping your beans fresher, longer? We asked Gail to throw a bag of Velton’s Bonsai Blend into an Airscape and a Coffee Bean Vac, then we pulled shots a week later and two weeks later to see how they held up. Aside from when we opened them for testing, they were securely sealed.

Watch to find out how they stack up!

SCG Crew Views: What is your favorite non-espresso prep?

While we have over 100 different espresso machines at our jittery little fingertips each day, our crew sometimes opts to brew a batch o’ java using a different method. We asked Gail, Bunny, Allie, Brandi and Rade to share which non-espresso coffee preparations they dig the most, then filmed how they do it.

We shot this series over a few weeks and didn’t realize until the slice-n-dice that one very common theme throughout is that all of us lack the precision some folks adore, but we’re pretty sure you know that about us by now!

Watch as each of our trusty compatriots talk about why they like the prep they’ve chosen and make us a cup so we can taste their handiwork. This video is a true homage to shooting from the hip if there ever was one.

Cooking with Kaylie: Espresso Infused Meringue Cookies

I recently decided that my mission in life is going to be finding ways to incorporate coffee and espresso into everyday foods. After all, who wants to limit their caffeine intake to mornings?!Espresso Meringues

So, the first recipe I wanted to tackle was Espresso Infused Meringue Cookies from the Happy Good Times Blog. I think now would be the appropriate time to point out that these meringues didn’t turn out how I think they were supposed to. They were still good (seriously!), but I think I lack the necessary skills to create this lovechild of baked goods and candy. Also, I may or may not follow directions well…

Ingredients

  • 3 large egg whites at room temperature Espresso Meringue Ingredients
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon finely ground espresso or coffee beans (we used Velton’s Twilight Blend)
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla (I used powdered, but I don’t think that’s necessary)

Directions

  • Allow whites to come to room temperature (about 20 minutes)
  • Clean and dry your mixing bowl
  • Line baking sheet with parchment paper
  • Pre-heat oven to 275 degrees F
  • Stir together sugar, espresso grounds and vanilla – set aside
  • Using a mixer, beat whites on low speed until foamy
  • Sprinkle cream of tartar and salt over foamy whites
  • Increase mixer speed to medium, and beat until medium peaks form
  • Increase mixer speed to high, and add sugar mixture one tablespoon at a time
  • When stiff, glossy peak form, spoon meringue onto your prepared baking sheet
  • Bake for 60-70 minutes in the top third of your oven
  • Allow to cool completely on the baking sheet
  • Store in an air-tight container for about 3 days.

After reading through that, and seeing my pictures, you may have a couple of questions. Questions like: ‘Kaylie, did you use bottled egg whites instead of fresh ones?’ or ‘That sounds like a lot of meringue mixture; did you double the recipe?’ The answer to both of those questions is yes, that is exactly what I did! Remember what I said about not following directions? Well, it’s not that I don’t follow them so much as I try to take shortcuts. Shortcuts which may or may not ruin the finished product.

How so? Well, the meringues were very delicate on the outside and soft onBroken Espresso Meringues the inside. Not fluffy soft, more like ‘too heavy to rise so it sunk to the bottom’ soft. The result? Something like hollow egg shells that were nearly impossible to keep intact while removing them from the baking sheet.

The crew here at Seattle Coffee Gear still ate them, cutting the sweetness with an iced latte (courtesy of Brandi). I just wish they had turned out pretty and delicious. If there are any readers with mad meringue-making skills, please let me know what I did wrong! I’d love to try these again and have them turn out. In the meantime, I will just need to redeem myself with next week’s recipe … Wish me luck.