Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I Have Coffee Issues

It is no secret that I love coffee. Good strong coffee, mind you. While I do not hail Starbucks as the all-time master of coffee, I do appreciate that they are in every major city and that my addiction/habit/appetite can be whetted on demand almost anywhere I choose to roam. When planning a trip, I look up where the Starbucks stores are located before I go if I have never been there before.

When I visit Starbucks, there are only a few drink options for me there: Drip coffee (as long as it’s a bold coffee and especially NOT that nasty Pike Place Blend), Americano (I started drinking this when they decided to only have a bold choice until noon or so--that’s another story), or if I’m feeling strange, a Latte, straight espresso or Iced Coffee. I do not drink the frozen things or teas or anything sugary. To my drip or Americano, I will add 1 raw sugar and some cream. To the latte or espresso, I add nothing. To the iced, 1 Splenda and cream. I am very specific about my coffee and I will have it no other way. Yes, Mr. Barista, I can tell when you put more sugar than I asked for. It makes my teeth feel yucky and makes the onset of diabetes that much earlier for me. I do not appreciate this. I said ONE raw sugar, not one handful.

At home, I own all the coffee makers a girl could desire: A drip coffee machine, an espresso machine and a French press. I use the drip machine most often because it’s convenient, but the press is by far my favorite. Now that I have it, the espresso machine is sort of obsolete because the press can make espresso. But it can’t steam milk like the espresso machine. I keep the espresso machine because I like to say that I have one. I hardly use the thing.

THE BEANS: Oh my. I like a nice dark roast. However, I am also a fanatic about saving money. Or not spending so much if I don’t have to. Anyway, I have been surprisingly pleased with the Costco brand House Blend (which is roasted by Starbucks--Starbucks is like WalMart. No matter how much you try to get away, you still find yourself there in some way.). It is not as dark as I like, but I compensate for that by using more beans. FRESHLY GROUND BEANS, people. Do yourself a favor and go buy a $20 coffee grinder. Grind your coffee at home each time you want to make coffee. I ground some beans about 12 hours ahead of time once and it was gross. I am THAT good. I notice these things. Pre-ground or that stuff that they vacuum seal into a brick is no good.

This whole post resulted from me stating on Facebook AS FACT that my iced coffee I make at home is better than any Starbucks Barista could make. It’s true. I’ve been asked to share my “recipe.” Ladies and germs, I don’t have a recipe. I don’t even cook with them in general. Again, I am THAT good. I do bake with them since baking requires them.

So here’s what I do:
1. Spoon about 7 heaping tablespoons of coffee beans into your coffee grinder.
2. Grind to a medium--not coarse, not fine, MEDIUM. Just like you would grind for regular drip coffee. I would rather you grind too much than not enough, though.
3. Dump the whole thing into your coffee filter and put it in the filter basket.
4. Fill the reservoir of your drip coffee maker with about 17 oz of water. Here, I would like for you to err on the side of less water than more water.
5. Turn on the coffee maker. It will now make you some coffee.
6. While the coffee maker is working, fill your favorite cocktail shaker with ice. I like mine from Pampered Chef. It’s double walled and fabulous.
7. Then fill your favorite BIG cup 1/2 full of ice or frozen coffee cubes. I do some of each. Here's mine, complete with Buzz (Go Jackets!) & a pink straw:

2011 06 22 Coffee Issues-1

8. Now that your coffee is ready, pour some over the ice in the shaker with whatever sweetener you want. I don’t use regular sugar in iced coffee so I don’t know if it will dissolve properly. Shake it until the ice is almost melted. Oh, put the lid on first before you start shaking!
9. Pour the now-chilled coffee over the ice in your favorite big cup. Keep doing step 8 & 9 until your big cup is full. Top with some half & half or whatever.
10. Now, you drink the iced coffee. After you have finished, come back here and leave a comment thanking me for this goodness that now resides in your big cup! You’re welcome, in advance, of course!

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