The Ultimate Coffee Lover’s Cheesecake

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 by

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If you like to sink your teeth into a good baking project on a cold day, this one is worth the effort. As pretty as it is delicious, it’s also the perfect dessert for a holiday dinner or special occasion. Consider it the dessert version of an after dinner coffee drink, a drink with a cinnamon-coffee layer, a chocolate-coffee layer, cream cheese frosting, and a chocolate cookie crust!

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Ingredients

For the cheesecake:

1 1/2 lb cream cheese softened at room temperature

14-oz can sweetened condensed milk

4 large egg yolks

1 cup sour cream

1 tablespoon confectioners sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 ounces dark chocolate, melted (we used the 70% cocoa variety)

4 tablespoons turkish or extra fine ground coffee, divided between layers

4 tablespoons coffee liqueur, divided between layers

2 tablespoons cinnamon

For the crust:

24 chocolate cookies-finely crushed

1/4 cup unsalted butter-melted

2 tablespoons turkish or extra fine ground coffee

For the topping:

1 lb cream cheese softened at room temperature

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup confectioners sugar

Dark chocolate shavings

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 10-inch springform pan and set aside. Finely crush the cookies in a food processor. Add the coffee and then the melted butter and blend until it’s all moistened. Press crumb mixture onto the bottom of the prepared pan and bake for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 275 degrees and begin making the filling layers. Beat together the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk. While beating, add the egg yolks one at a time and beat until very smooth. Add the sour cream, confectioners sugar, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, beat 4 egg whites with 1/2 t salt until stiff. Fold into the cheese mixture.

To create the layers, divide this mixture in half. For the bottom (chocolate) half, whisk in 2 tablespoons of the coffee, 2 tablespoons of the coffee liqueur, and the 4 ounces of dark chocolate. For the top (cinnamon) layer, whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons of coffee, 2 tablespoons of coffee liqueur, and 2 tablespoons of cinnamon. Pour the chocolate batter into the 10-inch springform pan lined with the crust, followed by the cinnamon batter. Bake at 275 degrees for 1 hour. Turn off the heat and let sit (door closed) for 45 minutes or more. The cake should cool completely in the oven.

Meanwhile, beat together the first three topping ingredients and let sit at room temperature. When the cake is cool, remove from the oven, spread the cream cheese mixture over the top, and add the chocolate shavings. Run a knife around the inside of the pan and store in the refrigerator uncovered for the first few hours to prevent condensation. Remove from the pan when cold.

To serve, slice the cake while still cold using a thin, non-serrated knife and rinse the blade under hot water between slices. Another great slicing method: use a piece of dental floss, fishing line, or thin wire to cut through the cake. Drop one end at the bottom after each cut and pull it through!

Vietnamese Coffee

Thursday, June 23rd, 2016 by

Vietnamese Coffee

If you’ve never had Vietnamese coffee, you have to try it. It’s shockingly good. I like my coffee black or with a little cream, but never sweetened so I can’t explain why I like this intensely sweet drink, but I love it, especially over ice. The sweeter the better. Coffee in Vietnam is typically Robusta, which has a reputation for being slightly bitter. Dark roast levels are common, as they minimize this bitterness. A big spoonful of sweetened condensed milk helps too. For this recipe we used our Super Dark Espresso, which contains some Robusta as most espresso blends do. We also used a traditional 6 ounce Vietnamese coffee filter called a phin. These stainless steel filters are inexpensive and easy to find online in several sizes. You can substitute brewed espresso or strong French Press coffee if you prefer.

Ingredients (1 serving)

  • 2 tablespoons (or more to taste) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 1/2 heaping tablespoons ground coffee. A French press (coarse) grind works best
  • Hot water

Instructions

Pour the sweetened condensed milk into a heat safe glass or mug. Start with a little if  you’re not sure how much sweetness you’ll like and stir more in if you prefer after brewing. Remove the interior screen from the filter (you may need to unscrew this manually). Add coffee to the filter and replace the inside screen, tightening the screw fully, the unscrewing it one full turn to give the coffee room to expand. Rest the filter on top of your mug or glass and add a splash of near-boiling water. Let this sit for half a minute, then fill the filter chamber with water. Cover the top of the filter (there’s a cap provided) and allow the coffee to drip through. Once the water has drained through, remove the filter, stir, and enjoy hot or pour over ice.

This entire process takes about five minutes. If the water drains through too quickly, your grind may be too course and you’ll have a watery cup of coffee. Too fine a grind will clog the filter. If you grind your own beans, play with the grind level until you find what brews and tastes best with your filter.

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a Cinco de Pyro

Friday, April 29th, 2016 by

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Margaritas are great and all, but this tequila cocktail involves ice cream, coffee, and fire. Considered an after dinner drink, the Cinco de Pyro (aka “Mexican coffee”) is more conducive to starting the party than winding things down. For a less sweet version, substitute whipped cream for ice cream.

Ingredients (per drink)

1 ½ oz. reposado tequila (high proof)
½ oz. Kahlua coffee liqueur
Hot coffee, we used our Mexican Altura
Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream

Instructions

Add the Kahlua to your mug and top with hot coffee, leaving room at the top for the tequila and ice cream. Add the tequila to a heat-proof pitcher or sauce boat, and light. Carefully pour the flaming tequila into your glass and top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Iced Horchata Latte

Thursday, March 24th, 2016 by

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Our new favorite hot weather coffee drink is a CBD tested and approved recipe from Bon Appetit: the iced horchata latte. Horchata is a creamy, sweet iced drink typically made with rice and nuts and flavored with cinnamon. We love it so much we developed an Horchata green tea (returning soon), which we drank all last summer over ice. This recipe combines ground coffee beans with traditional horchata ingredients for a drink that’s somewhere between horchata and cold brew. It’s delicious. We doubled the original quantities for better guzzling.

Ingredients 

  • 1/2 cup brown rice
  • tablespoons coffee beans (we used Jamaican Blue Mountain Style)
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • cinnamon stick, crushed
  • 8 cups water
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • Simple syrup to taste

Instructions:

Using a coffee grinder, coarsely grind the brown rice, followed by the coffee beans. Place in a large bowl along with the almonds, cinnamon stick, and water. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Transfer the mixture to a blender and puree until very smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a serving container. Serve immediately over ice, sweetening the latte to taste with simple syrup and salt. You can store the batch in the fridge for up to three days. Stir well before serving.

Coffee Smoothie (for Two) Recipe

Friday, February 5th, 2016 by

If you don’t already know this, a smoothie is basically a milkshake, but you can drink it first thing in the morning and you don’t have to feel bad about yourself for that. You can even tell other people about it. So long as you use the word “smoothie” and not “milkshake,” you will be regarded a person who cares about health and has their stuff together, rather than someone who succumbs to vices before noon. This delicious and healthy caffeinated smoothie recipe was invented in honor of Valentine’s Day. Share it with someone special, or celebrate your true love for coffee and drink both servings yourself.

Coffee Smoothie Levels

Ingredients (serves 2)

1 1/2 cups almond milk. We used sweetened dark chocolate almond milk, but substitute unsweetened if you prefer.

2 frozen bananas, cut into chunks

1 cup cold strong coffee (freeze it in an ice cube tray first for a thicker texture)

2 tablespoons peanut butter

Instructions

Blend & enjoy!!