Browsing articles from "March, 2009"
Mar 29, 2009

Chocolate Cappuccino Chip Cookies

Cappuccino Chocolate Chip Cookies

Adding coffee or espresso to a recipe can infuse some coffee flavor, but it tends to be on the mild side unless the recipe can accommodate a lot of it, as Mocha Pudding Cake can. I find that it’s often better to use coffee extract, instant coffee or other coffee-flavored things, like Cappuccino chips. The chips are made by Guittard and have a distinctly milky coffee taste to them. They’re not too sweet, even though they’re made of white chocolate, and add a nice extra boost of flavor to a recipe.

These chocolate chip cookies have real coffee in the dough, as well as cappuccino chips, chocolate chips and white chocolate chips. They’re delicious when they’re still warm, served with milk or coffee, and have a nice chewiness to them even after they’ve cooled. Espresso can be substituted for the coffee, as well.

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Mar 27, 2009

Zhena’s Gypsy Coconut Chai, reviewed

Green and white teas are often used as the base for flavored tea when a maker wants to introduce some more unusual elements into a line. This is because their flavors are mild, and the added flavors can stand out more strongly. Black tea is rich enough that it is actually a great base for flavors, provided you match them well. In this case, the combination of coconut and chai tea on a black tea background in Zhena’s Gypsy Coconut Chai is absolutely brilliant.

The organic, fair trade tea has a rich and spicy flavor to it, with notes of ginger and cardamom. The coconut flavor is subtle, but clear, and really comes through if you decide to sweeten the tea and not just drink it black. It’s a very balanced tea, with all the flavors playing together in such a way that even those who say “but I don’t like chai tea!” will happily drink a cup of this.

If you don’t see this same package in stores, don’t worry. It seems as though the company is moving towards a simpler, all-black label for this tea at the moment.

Mar 25, 2009

Tea Forte Brewing Pitchers

Brewing PitcherThis gorgeous Tea Forte Brewing Pitcher set might be better off if it were called a serving set, because the lovely presentation that this makes on the table is mostly what you’re going to see. The set is made of heat-resistant hand-blown glass and stacks neatly one on top of the other. The idea is that you use the top pitcher for brewing your tea, and the bottom one for ice for serving. This means that the tea can be as fresh as possible – still hot, in other words – and you don’t have to try to make time to brew a pitcher and chill it before serving. Just remember to try and brew the tea a little bit strong to account for the fact that pouring the hot tea over ice will water it down just a little bit.

Mar 23, 2009

Increase in home coffee brewing

LatteIt’s no surprise that people are cutting back on their spending due to the economic downturn, and gourmet coffee drinks are an expense that many are choosing to cut way back on, if not eliminate entirely. But that doesn’t mean giving up coffee. Instead, it means that more Americans are brewing coffee at home more often than last year

According to a survey on coffee-drinking trends carried out by the National Coffee Association, the number of people who drink coffee everyday has remained steady – 54 percent this year vs 55 percent last year – with no statistical difference between this year and last. Conusmption of gourmet coffee beverages, especially if they were consumed on a daily basis, has definitely dropped from 17 percent of regular coffee drinkers to just 14 percent. 85 percent of people participating in the survey who reported having coffee the previous day (or on a daily basis) said that they brewed it at home.

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