Milk & Honey Latte Via Cold Brew

Milk & Honey Latte

Milk & Honey Latte

Since we relocated to the Phoenix AZ area, we are enjoying...scratch that enduring...scratch that one too....tolerating the summer heat! I've decided to do some research, creating and massive taste testing on some cold/iced/frozen coffee infused drinks to share in the coming weeks.

We have a simple one to start with...it's one I drink when I want a little iced treat during the day and love to share with my friends when I have them over. What's great is the milk you choose can be any kind...I like to use soy milk but you can use almond milk, skim, 2%, whatever you want. 

I have the recipe for Cold Brew Coffee available in a previous blog. To get the recipe, click here. Here's the quick and simple recipe;

Ingredients: 

  • 1/4 cup of cold brew concentrate  
  • 1 cup of cold milk (whole, skim, almond, soy etc) 
  • 2 teaspoons of honey

Directions: 

  • Pour your cold brew coffee in a tumbler or glass of choice
  • In a small microwave safe cup of bowl, heat the honey. Shouldn't take long to heat such a small amount. 
  • In a separate cup or small glass, add your cold milk. Start stirring the milk and add the heated honey. By heating the honey it will help prevent it from hardening in the milk. (Honey will dissolve much easier in the cold milk than it will in the cold brew coffee or the coffee and milk)
  • Once dissolved add the milk and honey mixture to the cold brew coffee.  
  • Chill in the fridge if needed or enjoy! 

Having friends over?... Make a head of time in a large container and simply double or quadruple the recipe in a pitcher. Set in the fridge and when your guest arrive...wonderful chilled milk & honey lattes.  

I tend to use coffee ice cubes to enjoy it sooner with added coffee flavor from the ice cubes OR use regular ice cubes should you wish to put together and serve immediately. There really is no wrong way to make it. 

I hope you enjoy. Be sure to comment and let me know your thoughts and how you made yours,  

Lolita 💋 

From Fig Tree....to Fig Jam

My tree in our backyard.  

My tree in our backyard.  

We Relocated back to Arizona in October, 2015. Most of our living has been desert landscape or a very small "postage stamp" lot. We found a beautiful home in a historic district and I've never had so much grass, bushes and greenery in my life! 

Our neighbor has several fruit bearing trees. Oranges, grapefruit and persimmons to name a few. Well....I have a fig tree. I was pretty excited about it as I L❤️VE figs! I remember growing up in my wonderful neighborhood on Buckingham Drive in El Paso, the Elias family had a fig tree and I thought how cool is that. It was so different to have a fig tree I thought and they were so tasty too. I couldn't wait until they were ripe so we could enjoy.

Kadota figs

Kadota figs

Flashback to the present...I have a fig tree and wanted to find out what kind it was. Well until it starts producing the fruit, I really wasn't sure. I researched a lot on the web and talked to a couple of local nurseries. I am fortunate because we have bi-weekly irrigation so it is getting plenty of water. I've been watching it and soon it started producing all that wonderful fruit. So I (along with every wild bird in the neighborhood) watched carefully and when they were ready I started harvesting and yes...I shared with the wild birds too. There are so many...and it's still producing more fruit. 

I finally found out I have a Kadota Fig Tree. Which, from what I read, is the figs they use in Fig Newtons. They stay a greenish/yellowish color unlike the Mission or Brown Turkey Figs that turn a deep purple or brown. So what do you do with figs??? Why make fig jam!!!

Paired with Costa Rican coffee.😁 

Paired with Costa Rican coffee.😁 

I made up my first batch...wasn't hard, just takes time to simmer and thicken. The end result....Johnny says "De-lish! I'm pretty happy with it myself. In case you're interested...here's the recipe. And you know what? It's great on a piece of toast and a cup of Johnny Lolita's Coffee (shameless plug). I paired it with our Costa Rican....very nice. However, this would be wonderful in making up a Charcuterie Board using some goat cheese or Manchego....oh and a glass of wine. (Wink wink, smiley face) 

Here's the recipe;  

  • 2 lbs of figs stemmed and quartered. (I used the Kadota figs which are probably not as sweet as the Mission or Brown Turkey Figs) 
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • ½ cup honey (or sub with the same amount of sugar)
  • Juice of 1½ lemons
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place the figs, sugar, honey, & lemon juice in a large sauce pan and heat over medium-high heat, stirring to combine as the sugar melts. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and cook until thickened, about 50-60 minutes. Be sure to stir the pan often to prevent sticking and/or burning, especially as the mixture thickens. Remove from heat, stir in the vanilla, and cool completely.
  2. Store the jam in jars or other air tight containers in the refrigerator. You can also can them, just follow the instructions for canning. 
Fig delish!  

Fig delish!  

Because the figs thicken on their own, you don't need to add pectin therefore no need to can. However, if you are gifting to someone, putting them in a mason jar and adding a cute Kraft style sticker makes a great special gift! 

Enjoy!

Lolita💋

 

Featured Coffee; Buzz Kill

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I've been drinking coffee ever since I was very young. (No, coffee does not stunt your growth 😉) Of course when I was young...the coffee mom made for me was more cream and sugar than coffee.  

I've always L❤️VED coffee...been drinking it all my life. Always coffee with caffeine too. Never had a desire later in life to drink decaf. I recall when I was younger drinking decaf at a friend's house who's parents didn't drink caffeine and I took my first sip and cringed.  😱

Decaf always tasted like chemicals to me....now that I know how decaf was (and with some still is) processed...I now know I WAS tasting...chemicals!  

Since I started roasting, I needed a decaf bean to roast for my customers. Honestly, I wasn't thrilled at roasting a decaf bean and serving. My fear was the taste. I was fearful that I was going to serve the same chemical tasting decaf I remembered as a kid.   

With the advancement in the coffee industry and the new generation of roasters in the last 15+ years, there are new ways of processing decaf that offers a wonderful cup. One such process is the Swiss Water Process. Swiss water process is a natural chemical fess process that removes 99.9% of the caffeine while maintaining the coffee's origin and flavor. 

Currently we offer our Buzz Kill Decaf that comes from Colombia. It has gone through the Swiss Water Process and arrives in bags just lot our other coffee beans do.  

The Colombian delivers a smooth, slightly heavy body with a hint of chocolate. It's rich, sweet and delicious. Although I've been one not to be concerned about the effects of caffeine...I do enjoy a cup or two in the evenings. I do not add sugar to my coffee and this cup has a natural sweet taste. A great way to enjoy a full bodied cup of coffee.

We roast on Mondays & Thursdays and delivery locally the following day OR ship out (2-3 day shipping) the following day.  

Lolita💋 

You Know What? That Would Be Great With A Cup Of Coffee!

My whole life...I've been surrounded by that wonderful cup of java. I'd hear it (and smell it) in the morning....the Corningware (with the blue cornflower design) coffee pot "sputtering, hissing and percolating" our morning coffee. That was our cue to get up out of bed. 

Coffee goes great with???Everything! 

Coffee goes great with???Everything! 

Another thing that was very big in our family is what would taste great with that cup of coffee. Especially Phyllis, my beautiful Mom. it was really funny actually...we would see some commercial on TV about a new cake mix, recipes or anything chocolate and my Mom would say "Oh, I bet that would be great with a cup of coffee." 

We all did it actually. We would be out to dinner and when we finished our meal the waiter would offer up the dessert menu. He would leave us to our devices to discuss options and choices. Many times we would order one or two pieces and take home because....It would be great with a cup of our coffee at home!" 

Our life did surround that cup of coffee...typically with great conversation and a little sweet, but we needed that balance of rich chocolate or fruity pie with our wonderful perculated coffee. We'd search recipes just to find "the one" that would taste great with???? You got it...a cup of coffee. My brother Kim has become an excellent cook. I'd like to call him a Chef... he says "I just love good food...nothing fancy or gourmet, I'm not a chef, but I disagree. He creates fabulous pies from scratch. Right down to the crust. From fruit to chocolate, lemon or whip...they are De-lish! Of course when he's ready to unveil his latest creation....enjoying the pure sweet aroma...he turns to me and says "You know what? This will be great with a cup of coffee! Let me get some going." I know our Mom is smiling down on us and I know she's holding a fork in her hand to steal a bite. 

So in honor of our family tradition, I've enclosed a simple recipe that I know would be great with a cup of coffee. A Johnny Lolita's coffee blend would be best, wink wink smiley face  

  Soft Sugar Cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 Cup (2 sticks) Salted Butter softened
  • 1 1/4 cups Granulated Sugar
  • 3 Egg Yolks
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 cup of sugar (for rolling dough) 

Prep

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Whisk together flour, baking soda and baking powder and set aside.  

In another bowl, add sugar and butter and cream together using an electric mixer. Add egg yolks and vanilla continue mixing. Add flour mixture and continue mixing until combined but don't over mix. Scoop dough into balls and roll in sugar and place on cookie sheet.  

Bake 15-18 minutes or until tops of cookies start to crack. Cool for 5 minutes on baking sheet before moving to wire rack. Now make a cup of coffee and enjoy!  

Lolita💋 

And Now....A Cold Brew Blend

Johnny's Cold Brew Blend

Johnny's Cold Brew Blend

We started a blog with our Cold Brew Recipe, then another blog about making Cold Brew Hot...And now, we offer a Cold Brew Blend for sale at Johnny Lolita's.  

We received so many requests on the best coffee to Cold Brew and it really doesn't matter. As long as you like your coffee, try using it in a cold brew process. You will be amazed at the difference in taste from brewing hot vs brewing cold. 

Johnny's new love is Cold Brew Coffee! He loves it so much I decided to name the new blend after him! He helped himself to my coffee beans...freshly roasted of course...and created a unique blend. He Has created several options and I have loved each one. However, this blend seems to be the favorite. 

The results...a very smooth bodied brew with hints of cocoa, nutty and fruit. This blend was especially blended for a cold brew process so we will also throw in instructions on how to make your very own cold brew coffee at home. 

REMINDER...cold brew process will result in a wonderful concentrate! Yes it's strong...so you will dilute with water...alittle or a lot! 

Be sure to order your bag of Cold Brew Blend online for shipping or local delivery.  

Lolita💋 

Happy 4th Of July

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Happy 4th! Our second holiday of the summer season. Well....technically Memorial Day was in the Spring. But in the Southwest & West...it's already hot! Time to spend with family & friends, barbecue competitions amongst neighbors and of course fireworks.  

Ah yes, fireworks! We all love them and as a kid, we all wanted to shoot them off. Of course my best friend and I were the targets of our older brothers who liked to chase us with fireworks.  

Because of the heat, you may not be thinking of hot coffee. But have you ever made cold brew? Cold brew is a great way to make coffee concentrate to be utilized as an ice coffee OR if you are craving the hot cup in the morning, all you need to do is add some boiling water to a 1/3 of the coffee concentrate and instantly you have hot coffee.  

The other awesome thing about cold brew is that the same coffee you drink everyday hot, will result in a completely different taste and profile when cold brew. The taste is sweeter and smooth with no acidity. The chemical reaction that takes places when heating the grounds gives you the acidity. Cold brew doesn't. Another great thing is it will last up to 6 weeks in the fridge. 

In our next quick blog, I'll discuss how to make cold brew simply at home. In the meantime, Johnny & I wish you a happy and safe 4th of July. Remember our vets & pets when it comes to fireworks.  

It Starts With A Flame

It's dawn, very quiet and slightly cooler this early in the morning. I love this time of day. Everything is fresh and new. You're starting a new day...a new quest...a new adventure. For me, my quest is for the perfect tasting cup.  

As I sit in the quietness of the room filled with large burlap sacks of green coffee beans, I chuckle to myself, "How did I get here?" I guess I'm more sensitive to it as I just hit a monumental birthday a couple of weeks ago, but can't help but smile at how my life has changed and switched gears. I'm here because I took a chance at something I've never done before but have become very passionate about. I had a successful career in "Corporate America" but wanted something more. I counseled so many candidates during the economy crash in 2008 who lost their jobs and now we're in a situation where they didn't know what they were going to do but had a desire to chase a dream. Doing something completely different and possibly outrageously risky! Yes...I counseled them on taking the steps to seek and figure out what they wanted to do next in their career adventure. (Yes an adventure....a career adventure). John and I found ourselves in the same boat...and I began taking our own advice and here I am....up at dawn...roasting coffee.

It does start with a flame. The light of the gas and the drum heating up to welcome its first batch of green coffee all the way from Sumatra. Roasting the coffee beans to deliver an earthy taste that has a heavy mouth-feel. Or the next batch of green beans that will result in a spicy and citrus taste in your cup. My goal each day I roast is to deliver the freshest and best tasting cup of coffee for you to start your day. It is my goal each day, one that I've become so passionate about. 

We've been doing this a little over two years now and have grown successfully (slow but constant) and hopefully ready to take Johnny Lolita's to the next level. I know it's just coffee....but that fresh hot cup first thing in the morning can set your day as well as finishing up a perfect meal at the end of your day. Hot or Iced...Caffeine or Decaf....that is my goal. AND...it starts with a flame. 

My goal is to always deliver you the freshest and great tasting coffee each day.

Lolita 💋 

New Mexico's Hidden Treasures

We met the nicest couple while making our rounds today, Anita and Ken McLeod. They own and operate a fantastic bed and breakfast called Dream Catcher Inn. The B&B is nestled in the foothills of the Organ Mountains, just East of Las Cruces. The views of The Organ Mountains, Las Cruces and the surrounding area are breathtaking! 

When we arrived, we were greeted by a great big Teddy-bear of a dog named Brandy. She actually guided us to a parking space, greeted us as we exited the car then walked us to the lobby door. 

When you step inside the door you feel like you are at home. The Great Room is a community gathering area with sofas, overstuffed chairs, fireplace and a huge carved wood dining table. Anita and Ken are the type of "Family" you look forward to visiting. You immediately feel like they are old friends. 

Anita took us on a tour of the place and it's gorgeous! The brochure pictures do not do it justice! The decor is 100% New Mexico. There's even an outdoor patio with Fireplace and a Guest kitchen that's accessible 24/7. Each room has DirectTV and high speed internet. However, the Great Room has no TV so you can visit, enjoy a book or just relax. They even have a gazebo for weddings and a huge area they turn into a dance floor! 

Anita also shared with us that the Property is 100% Wheelchair accessible. Even the custom built dining table is high enough to accommodate a motorized wheelchair. 

Anita and Ken host guests year round. Short and extended stays. Today Anita was beginning to do some prep work for Thanksgiving dinner. She also told us that during the Christmas season each room is individually decorated, complete with Holiday themed linens and your very own Christmas tree. 

The rates are surprisingly reasonable. If you are looking for a truly unique New Mexico vacation or have out of town guest that want something more than a chain hotel, you have to give Anita and Ken a call!

DreamCatcher Inn Bed and Breakfast de Las Cruces, LLC.
10201 Starfly Road
Las Cruces, New Mexico 88011                                                                                                  575-522-3035  Toll Free: 1-866-298-1935                                                 www.dreamcatcherinn.com