Snow Day Latte | foodsciencenerd.com

Snow Day Latte

Posted on Posted in Culinary Science, Inspiration, Nutrition Information, Recipes

I woke up this morning to a lovely blanket of snow and a day free of classes, which means I get a whole day to relax and study.  I don’t know about you, but I study best with a latte in my hand, but I don’t study well if said latte comes from a coffee shop that I have to drive home from in said blanket of snow.  Thus, I’m stuck at home.

The seagulls of the neighborhood don't know how to land in snow, and it's quite comical.
The seagulls of the neighborhood don’t know how to land in snow, and it’s quite comical.

Fortunately, I still have that pesky 1% milk I bought as well as a milk frother I impuse-bought to get free shipping from Amazon with another purchase.  I did a little research about different kinds of coffee drinks (the linked article is really fantastic) and ways to make them at home, and I settled for a hybrid drink that is somewhere between a cafe au lait and a latte.  I don’t have any espresso or an espresso maker, so I used my pour-over technique, also developed during a marathon study day, but used about double the coffee and ground it as finely as I dared (so that it wouldn’t seep through the steeper).  I also cut all three pours short so I only filled about 2/3s the mug with coffee.

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Next, the milk.  I did some more research and found that it is best to froth the milk, either in a cup with a frother or a lidded jar and some elbow grease, then microwave for 20-30 seconds to stabilize the foam, then add to the coffee.  I took the batteries from my remote (I shouldn’t watch TV while studying anyway) and put them in the frother.    –Beginner’s tip: turn the frother on after submerging in the milk.  This step is best done within the protective walls of the sink, at least until you have a handle on using the frother.
Froth until you have a bit more foam than you think you need (some will dissolve), then microwave for 20-30 seconds.  Use a spoon to hold back the foam while adding as much milk as you desire to the coffee, then spoon the foam on top.

Look at those cute little clouds of foam!
Look at those cute little clouds of foam!

My review: pretty darn fantastic.  This will definitely become a staple of my studying days.  And it’s healthy too!  Coffee has tons of antioxidants, is currently being shown to lower risk of cancer, stroke, liver disease, diabetes, and neurological degeneration, and a little caffeine can actually be a good thing for productivity and activity.  The 1% milk has the obvious benefits of calcium, vitamin D, and protein, but the touch of fat also greatly increases the absorption of the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.

To make your own hybrid latte:

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My kitchen is just one big advertisement for David’s Tea.

1) Grind coffee as finely as your strainer will allow, about 3 T ground.
2) Pour about 1/4 cup almost-boiling water over the coffee into your mug and let percolate.  Repeat twice.
3) Fill another cup about halfway with milk (low-fat works best).  Insert the frother and turn on until a vortex forms.  Allow to froth until desired amount of foam appears.
4) Microwave milk for 20-30 seconds.
5) Use a spoon to hold back the foam while you pour as much milk as you like into the coffee, then spoon the foam on top.

This technique also works with tea!

…This frother officially deserves its own set of batteries.

Snow Day Latte

Snow Day Latte

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp medium grind coffee
  • 1 cup water at 205F
  • 1/2 cup milk

Directions

  1. Grind coffee as finely as your strainer will allow, about 3 T ground.
  2. Pour about 1/4 cup almost-boiling water over the coffee into your mug and let percolate. Repeat twice.
  3. Fill another cup about halfway with milk. Insert the frother and turn on until a vortex forms. Allow to froth until desired amount of foam appears.
  4. Microwave milk for 20-30 seconds.
  5. Use a spoon to hold back the foam while you pour as much milk as you like into the coffee, then spoon the foam on top.
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