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Coffee Break

While I write primarily about food and family there are other things I am passionate about. In fact, if you know me personally you know another thing I am very passionate about: coffee. So for this post I am not writing about food. I am taking a coffee break.

I always like to give some history to what I write about, so let me tell you a little about my love affair with coffee. My parents always drank coffee. Every day, from their rising moments the smell of coffee was in the air. The method of brewing wasn’t always the same, but the coffee was always brewed.

One of my favorite brewers my parents had when I was young was a glass stovetop percolator that I remember watching as it brewed over the blue flame on their gas stovetop. My mother insists that it made one of the best tasting cups of coffee she has ever had.

To note: my parents did not allow me to drink coffee as a child, so although I loved the smell and watching it brew or perk I did not drink coffee. That changed when I was in Junior High. Before you judge my parents, my coffee drinking started in church.

Living in a small town the number of Junior High and High School people attending my Sunday school was under 10. However, we were tasked with brewing the coffee for people to drink during the Fellowship following the church service. We had to make coffee in a large silver coffee urn. I can still see it with the directions to make the coffee; written on a piece of paper, in red ink, taped to the outside of the electric coffee maker. Once the coffee was brewed we ‘had’ to taste it to make sure it had brewed properly.

That was the beginning of the love of the taste of coffee. I had already fallen for the aroma, but the taste is what I loved.

Throughout my life I have developed more than a love for coffee, but a passion. Tasting coffee wherever I go is more than a hobby for me, it is a way of life.

I have also learned what makes an amazing cup of coffee, brewer, filter, coffee bean, grind and water.

Now let me tell you of the amazing discovery I made at my mother’s house over the weekend. I discovered a Pyrex Silex vacuum coffee maker. How thrilling. She said that she doesn’t know where it came from, but believes that my father picked it up at a garage sale a few years before his stroke. To my knowledge he had never even used it.

Silex Coffee Maker

Silex Coffee Maker

This morning I had some time to spend at mom’s. Today was the day to try the coffee maker. I brewed a lovely pot of coffee for my mother and me this morning. It was exciting to watch the coffee brew. It had been years since I had stood by the stove and watched through a glass pot as the water transformed, using magic beans, into a delicious cup of life giving potion. This was actually 6 cups of potion.

Coffee, after being brewed in Silex

Coffee,

I will get back to the cooking and food now. I hope you enjoyed the coffee break!

 
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Posted by on March 10, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

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Sharing some passion

Sharing some passion

Friday was Haiku day. I was on the road with my job most of the day. I did have time to write some Haiku in my head, unfortunately by the time I got home I had things to do and no time to get any of the words out of my head onto paper or into the computer. The weekend was busy with work and family, but I did manage to slip in a few hours of my new found passion, mixed media art!

My mother surprised me with a few bottles of acrylic paint and some scrapbook paper when I went to have coffee with her on Saturday morning, so I just had to use her gift!

First, I made a picture for Daughter Number One, who purchased her first home less than a month ago, and is finishing up painting the walls and starting to hang some artwork. I used her favorite color, green, and did a coffee cup like the one I had done last weekend. I sent her a picture and she was very excited.

Then I made a picture for Daughter Number Two, who is currently a student at the University of Kansas, majoring in biology (pre-Med). I made hers in pink, blue, and yellow and did a few new techniques and went with a simple heart collage. I loved trying the new techniques and am learning what works and what doesn’t.

As much as I would love to be able to take some time off to “art”, alas I must return to my job today. I did take a few minutes after my morning workout and while my morning beverage was brewing to write this Haiku about another one of my most passionate things.

green cup

The sounds coming from

My coffee pot are music

To my Waking Ears.

 

Thank you for allowing me to share my passion with you, in food, in art, in life. Just another small bite of my life… and they really are orts, of sorts.

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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National Donut Day: Baked Mocha Donuts

As I was watching some morning news this morning (it just happened to be KTLA) I learned that it is National Donut Day! Well, I certainly was not going to sit idly by while those Los Angelino’s had all of the fun. Here in theMidwestI was going to celebrate by making donuts with my girls. I asked daughter number 4 what kind of donuts we should make and she said chocolate. I was down with that. My only personal thought was that it would have ground coffee on the top. What? Ground coffee?

Well, let me tell you something fabulous that I learned yesterday. I as in the kitchenette / break room at my office yesterday pouring myself a cup of coffee. My boss was in there with a brick of cheddar cheese and a jar of (fresh, local) honey. It sounds like the start to a bad joke, but just wait! There was something on a plate that looked like it might be ground coffee beans. As I was watching her she sliced some cheese, put a drop of the honey on top of the cheese, and then sprinkled this mystery ingredient over the top. She assured me that I should try this. I asked and she confirmed that it was indeed topped with ground coffee bean. I tried a piece. Then another and another and…I think you get it. I was pretty sure I was going to be a very energetic person with constipation if I didn’t stop. So I stopped eating eat. I did not stop thinking about it. I asked my co-workers what they thought about it and we discussed how the coffee really brought out warmth and deepened the flavor of the cheese. My boss said that some little British guy on one of the Food channels was making this cheese dish. (I think it was Jamie Oliver). Later in the day I told the Hubs about it. We started brainstorming some things that would be good topped with or paired with the ground coffee.

So, when I decided to make donuts I decided to top them with ground coffee beans. It more than worked. I’m so glad my boss turned us on to the wonders of using ground coffee as a topping. It really does bring a new dimension and level to a dish.

Baked Mocha Donuts

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup vanilla soymilk
  • 1 /2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons strong brewed coffee
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare donut pan by coating with nonstick cooking spray. In large bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In a medium glass bowl, microwave butter. To bowl add milk, sugar, egg, butter, coffee, and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Add milk mixture to flour mixture; whisk until blended and smooth. Fill each donut well about 3/4 full. Bake ten-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, and they spring back at your touch. Place donut pan on a rack to cool for about five minutes before removing from the pan. Add glaze or powdered sugar (or other dry topping) to cooled donuts. Makes 10 small baked donuts.

I used a cream cheese glaze on my donuts. That and the ground coffee topping really made the mocha flavor “pop”!

Cream Cheese Glaze

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar

Soften the butter and cream cheese slightly in the microwave. Whisk until smooth. Add powdered sugar slowly until you have a nice glaze. If it seems to thick add a little bit of milk to thin it down. Be careful not to make it too thin or it will run right off of the donut. Gently dip the top of the cooled donut into the glaze. Set on a rack to dry. Sprinkle lightly with ground coffee bean.

I hope you all have the opportunity to enjoy some donuts today. This is the kind of “National” day that everyone can get behind. Oh, and if you make your own and bake them, instead of buying some greasy fried donuts, you can still feel good about eating healthy. That’s what I’m telling myself for sure.

 
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Posted by on June 1, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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