How many of us think of that beautiful cup of joe alongside a piece of toast in the morning, or that of your regular mug accompanied with a delicious brownie in your favorite café while on your lunch break or catching up with friends?
For many of us, coffee can be a routine beverage that gives us a boost and motivation, as well as a warm means of comfort, on a rainy day.
However, coffee also has many other combinations other than the regular instant you might find in your office lunchroom.
Hence, let me help you discover how a humble bean can be elevated to another level in your drinks and added to various foodie treats this season.
A fresh ground Americano for the office or at home:
When it comes to a barista coffee, how many of you like the common cappuccino or know a person in the workplace who goes extravagant and orders the caramel macchiato?
The benefit of barista-quality coffee machines is that you can get that quality brew without having to leave the office, and when that office has become part of the home for many of us over the past year or two, an Americano can be the easiest to make.
As the picture shows, Americano consists of Espresso ground coffee and a dash of hot water at the top; so this is the opposite to a long black, which is double the espresso added to the water.
I like to get a tiny bit creative and add ground cinnamon and grated chocolate to mine.
An Italian icon with a delectable coffee punch.
When I think of coffee and food, my mind automatically goes to my Mum’s tiramisu recipe.
While the only thing you may need to “cook” or brew is the coffee itself, it makes for a mouth-watering coffee dessert.
Adding brewed coffee to layers of sponge finger biscuits, mascarpone cream and cocoa or grated chocolate, layer it in a casserole-style dish, and pour over the coffee.
If you want to make it an adult version, add Kaluha or any other coffee-infused liqueur to the brewed coffee.
It is best to set it in the fridge overnight (if you can wait that long) for the coffee, chocolate and liqueur to really infuse into the biscuits.
A bold bean for your brisket:
While coffee often loans itself to baking in the cookery world, it’s not the only way you can use this diverse bean.
It has many uses and you can also utilize it in a savory context. Finely ground coffee can be added to those such as rubs, marinades and barbecue sauces to help create or enhance smoky or spirited flavours to your grilled meats.
Coffee Cool Off:
While we all know of the delights of the classic iced coffee with whipped cream and ice cream, many coffee variations can get the chilled treatment.
Most of us know that flavours are enhanced when added to ice.
By serving the coffee within ice cubes, the flavour will also last longer when added to water and milk or cream. Make sure you have the coffee come to room temperature before making the cubes.
A boozy Irish/Italian romance:
When you want to add a little liquor to your caffeine hit, nothing goes past an Irish coffee. While it usually consists of hot coffee, whiskey and sugar topped with cream, I prefer to go away from the fanfare.
If you want a simple one made at home, brew a cup of percolated or finely ground coffee. If you don’t mind a strong brew, simply add to this a cap or two of a decent Irish whiskey. The whiskey makes it sweet enough.
For an experimental flavour combination, drizzle some over a Baci hazelnut ice cream dessert. Yum!
Therefore, from your morning cup to an evening nightcap; a rub for your barbecued spare ribs to a classic dessert and a cool refreshment, coffee is a versatile bean for any food or beverage.