Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Happy Almost There Day!

Baby, it’s cold outside!

And to make matters worse it’s the middle of the week.

In celebration of Almost There Day, we goddesses have a little pick-me-up that serves as a warm-me-up, too: Eggnog Spiked Latte. How’s that for a year-end bonus?

This recipe is adapted from many we experimented with in search of the perfect concoction. Of course, perfection in terms of taste is relative, so do what you gotta do to make this recipe all yours.

Eggnog Spiked Latte
(adapted from the kitchn)

What you’ll need (to serve two):

½ cup milk (or soy milk if your tummy gets wonky from dairy, like me)
1 cup egg nog (or a soy-based alternative to egg nog – you can find this at Whole Foods or the like)
½ cup prepared espresso (see notes below)**
¼ cup Frangelico liqueur
A smidge of ground nutmeg
Two cinnamon sticks

Combine the milk and egg nog (or their soy counterparts) in a small saucepan on the stove. Stir often and be sure not to curdle the milk (if you happen to have a kitchen thermometer lying around, make sure the milk does not exceed 120 degrees Fahrenheit – it will burn and that’s no bueno). In the meantime, combine the hot espresso and the Frangelico. Once the milk has warmed, add the hot, prepared espresso to the sauce pan and stir well to combine. Pour into two mugs and sprinkle nutmeg on top, to taste. Throw in a cinnamon stick for each mug and voila! Your day is suddenly warmer and brighter.

**Regarding the espresso. We prefer to make espresso the old-fashioned way – with a Bialetti Moka Express. You can find these little guys just about anywhere, and they come in lots of sizes. In my house we have the big one – I think it’s the 6-cup size (we don’t play around). To prepare the espresso is simple: fill the base of the Moka with fresh, cold water. A good device by which to measure is to fill it no higher than the little screw in the side. Place the coffee filter inside the base, and fill it with ground espresso (make sure that your coffee grinds are ground super, super fine). Screw the upper chamber of the Moka on top and set it on the stove. (Be sure that when you turn on the burner, the handle is not directly over the flame/heating element – just say no to burned fingers!) You know your espresso has finished when you hear it bubbling and gurgling – you can lift the lid to be sure that all the coffee has brewed up into the upper chamber. Turn off the heat, and allow the coffee to rest for approximately one minute before pouring.

Oh, and an alternative - if you prefer to have this as a little nightcap or a late-night snack, use decaf espresso.

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