Creamy Iced Coffee

This is a recipe I found over at the Oikos website, but it’s not accessible anymore. This is a transcription. This recipe produces a drink as tasty as all the other coffee recipes at the base level, but the beauty of using plain Greek yogurt in this blended drink will have a lovely creamy texture. One I find myself thinking about a lot. Try it.

1/4 Espresso Shot (or 2 tbsp Instant Coffee + 2 tbsp hot water, stirred and cooled down)
3/4 C Milk (I use chocolate if I have it, but white is fine)
4-6 Ice Cubes
1 tbsp Plain Greek Yogurt
1 tea Maple Syrup (not table syrup for pancakes)

Blend in a good blender for 30 seconds. Enjoy.

DIY Coffee Syrups

I love coffee. I love flavoured coffee. I also love saving loads of money by making these dead easy coffee syrups at home for pennies. I kid you not. Pennies.

Syrup batches I made this week: Caramel, Hazelnut, and Vanilla

Here are but a few of my faves, and a few new-to-me kinds I recommend making at home yourself. And they all have the same two starter ingredients: water + sugar (or sweetener of choice) in a 1:1 ratio to form a simple sugar base. Here we go.

Bar Cart Simple Syrup:
1C Water : 1C Sugar (any)

Bring water and sugar to a boil on med-high heat, stirring constantly until the sugar is fully dissolved. Once at the boiling point, drop heat to a simmer and let it low boil 10 mins. Cool completely off the burner. It will thicken up if you chill it in a storage jar.

Caramel Syrup:
1C Water : 1C White Sugar

Over a less than medium heat, stir the sugar often and alone in a bare pan, until it hits a lumpy liquid stage. Heat up the water in the microwave so it’s hot, but not boiling.

CAREFULLY dribble the hot water into the sugar a bit at a time, whisking when it’s safe to have you hand near the pot. The water + sugar will cause a steam reaction initially that will burn your hand if you pour it all in at once. Resist that urge.

Keep stirring the mixture until all of the sugar is smoothed out (don’t worry if some of it hardens – that will melt eventually as you continue stirring).

If you need more control of the sugar from hardening or burning, you can slip the pot halfway off the burner as you stir, returning the pot fully to the burner when you feel the sugar is melting needs more heat to finish.

Cool completely off the burner. It will thicken up if you chill it in a storage jar.

Hazelnut Syrup:
1C Water : 1C Sugar (not brown sugar; it will overwhelm the final flavour)
1 tea Hazelnut Extract

I went to many stores, but Michael’s was the only one that had this extract product.

Like the above two recipes, dissolve the sugar in the water fully, bring to a gentle boil, drop heat and let it simmer 10 mins before adding the extract off the heat and cooling completely. Store in a jar in the fridge to thicken it, or on the counter to use as is.

Brown Sugar Syrup:
1C Water : 1C Brown Sugar
3-4 drops or 1/4 tea Vanilla Extract

This syrup was the hottest new thing last year at Starfakes, and it looks like they are going to make it a big player in the summer coffee drinks game this year, too. Add this to some whipped cold milk foam, and pair them with some cold coffee, and you will have the summer heat licked before it starts.

Make the same as any of the previous syrups: bring to boil, drop to simmer for 10 mins. Cool completely. Jar and store in fridge for thicker or on the counter.

Mint Syrup:
1/2C Water : 1/2C Sugar (any)
2-3 Drops Mint Extract

This is a great version of the bar cart simple syrup for sweetening your summer drinks. Make the same as any of the previous syrups: bring to boil, drop to simmer for 10 mins. Cool completely. Jar and store in fridge for thicker or on the counter.

Coffee Syrup:
1C Water : 1C Sugar
3 Tbsp Instant Espresso or Instant Coffee Powder

Make the same as any of the previous syrups: bring to boil, drop to simmer for 6 mins. Skim off the foam as it simmers or strain into a cheese cloth when off the heat. Cool completely. Jar and store in fridge for thicker or on the counter.

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Smoothie

Another throwback to that time I made up a tasty little smoothie on the fly. I was trying to use up some of the flavoured oatmeal packs I had a lot of at the time before they started to turn rancid.

American Nuevo

My favourite coffee order when I grab coffee at home or out and about has to be, hands down, the delicious Americano Nuevo. It’s simple, straight forward, and tasty. It won me over in one sip.

I ask for it at every coffee shop. Not by name because this is a Starbucks creation that, funny enough, a few Starbucks locations didn’t know anything about. So I l started showing everyone taking my order this above screencap from my phone so they understood what I was after.

Americano Nuevo:
1 shot Espresso
1/2 C Hot Water
1/2 C Steamed Milk
1-2 pumps Hazelnut Syrup

Highly recommend.

Vanilla Coconut Lemonade Idea

This will be something I want to drink this summer for sure to go hand-in-hand with my beloved blended coffee drinks.

The measures I think I will be dropping into the blender jar are:
1 C Lemonade
8-10 Ice Cubes
1/4 C Coconut Milk
1 tbsp Vanilla Syrup (optional)

Strawberry Milk Drink

This is my take on the new Starbuck’s Strawberry drink that’s going to be hot this summer.

Strawberry Milk Drink:
1/2 C Milk, frothed

4 Ice Cubes
1/4 C Milk
1/4 C Strawberries, frozen
1/4 Strawberry Jam

6 Ice Cubes
1/2 C Cold Water

Start by fluffing up a 1/4 C of milk in a tall mug with a frothing wand. Set aside.

Into a blender, place the 4 ice cubes, 1/4 C milk, frozen strawberries and the jam. Blend that up quickly and pour it into a tall glass or drink jar with a lid and straw.

Top that blend with the 6 ice cubes and the 1/2 C water. Top with the frothed milk.

Enjoy!

DIY Oat Milk

If you ask me, oat milk is the way to go with cold blender drinks. (I’m not a fan of it in hot coffee or hot chocolate – yuck!) I use a little bit in all of my smoothies if I have it on hand.

So, if you want to learn how to make your own, have a spare five minutes, have a high-speed blender, or have some oats about to go off, why not make your own oat milk to save yourself a lot of money?

DIY Oat Milk:
1 C Old Fashion Oats (fully unprocessed or milled oat flakes)
4 C Cold Water
1/8 or less Salt (as a preservative)
Tight Meshed Strainer
Bowl (to strain into)
Container (to chill your milk in)

That’s it, that’s all.

TIP: If you blend longer than 20 seconds, the oats gum up the milk liquid, making it harder to strain it all out.

Blend the three ingredients for 20 seconds (tops!). Time it with your phone app if you need to. Pour into strainer over a bowl. Push the oat mush around to allow the liquid milk to strain into the bowl with a spoon. When the mush has released everything it’s going to release, dump it into your recycle bin. I’m sure someone has a use for that ball of mush so nothing goes to waste, but I don’t. *shrugs*

What’s left in the bowl is your oat milk. At this point, pour it into a lidded container vessel so you can keep it in the fridge up to one week (or a bit more). You will notice when you pull it out for use the water and oat liquid has separated. Don’t worry. Shake it up and use it would as you’d use any other milk.

Enjoy!

Classic Choco-Chip Frappe Drink

I found this recipe online awhile back (can’t recall where at this point) but trust me, it’s delicious. However… This is a huge indulgence drink. If I ever make more than one of these in a summer, I’m probably going through some stuff in my personal life. LOL

Pink Drink

I have been bringing these to work with me for a good chunk of August and September. I’m already looking forward to drinking more of it next Summer. 😀 It’s very easy to assemble and not too expensive to purchase the materials for. So, here we go:

The Pink Drink:
1/2 C chilled Pineapple Juice
1 C chilled White Grape Juice
1/8 C frozen Blue Berries
3 frozen strawberries
1/4 C chilled Coconut Milk, frothed
4-6 Ice Cubes

What I love the most about this drink is, as the fruit thaws, it releases lovely fruity juices into the other ingredients. It gets better tasting the longer I have it sitting in my large travel cup. As it sits, the coconut milk will start to separate from the acidic grape juice, so give it a shake before you open the lid to take a sip.