Posts Tagged ‘Cuban coffee’

Brisas del Caribe…

IMG_2744In a previous post where I shared my recipe for Chilean eggs, I realized I couldn’t have breakfast without coffee. I’m not a caffeine addict. Really, I’m not! I went for 6 years without caffeine in my 30s. I just love the taste of coffee. I am a coffee snob and I like to freshly grind my beans. I made it a game with my daughter when she was just a couple of months old, and now every time I start the grinder, she does a little toddler jig while the beans grind. I go back and forth between loving my Melita and getting bored with it. These days I use a Bialetti stove-top espresso maker (3-cup version). It makes a great cup of strong coffee. I make a strong cafe con leche by scalding whole milk in a pan and adding it to my coffee.

For a special treat, I’ll make a Cuban-style cafe con leche. It’s my version of that bullet-proof coffee that everyone is talking about these days. I grew up in lower Manhattan, and my building was right next door to a really amazing restaurant called Brisas Del Caribe. Sadly, it’s no longer in business, like most things that were great about that neighborhood. Everything I do in the kitchen with rice and black beans and maduros and tostones starts with a memory of the wonderful food at Brisas. My favorite drink with all of that? A hot sweet cafe con leche.

It turns out this style of making cafe con leche, which I always thought was Cuban, is actually Miami-Cuban, to be more correct (no wonder I could never find this particular taste in Havana! In my experience hey like their cafecitos without milk – just a nice strong espresso coffee with or without sugar). The addition of butter and salt started in Miami by Cuban immigrants there. I’ve never been to Miami, but I know that I’ll be in search of the best cafe con leche when I finally get there!

 

Miami-style Cuban coffee

Prep Time: 2 minutes

Cook Time: 4 minutes

Total Time: 6 minutes

Miami-style Cuban coffee

Miami-style Cuban coffee made with a sliver of butter and a pinch of salt. YUM

Ingredients

  • Espresso coffee (roughly 1/3 cup)
  • Scalded milk (roughly 2/3 cup)
  • sliver of butter
  • pinch of salt
  • unbleached sugar, agave or sweetener of your choice (sweetener is traditionally added, but optional)

Brew your dark coffee (preferably espresso), pour into cup. Add a sliver of butter, salt and sweetener and stir until butter is melted. Add a generous amount of scalded milk.

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Savouring the mornings…

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Since having a baby, my mornings sometimes seem overtaken by toddler craziness, but I try to always make a breakfast my daughter and I can both enjoy. One of my go-tos is what I call Chilean eggs, a dish I learned to make almost twenty years ago when I was married to a Chilean. I’m not sure why we started calling them Chilean eggs. I think it’s because my husband at the time grew up eating them that way. No matter what their origin, they are still my favorite egg dish. I’ve since made the recipe my own, but name has stuck. With simple ingredients and quick to make, they are the only eggs my 19-month-old daughter will eat, so I call that success! Add a nice cup of dark roast coffee for Mama and some homemade sourdough toast (more on that subject in my next food post) and I savour my mornings hanging with the little one. Yes, sometimes, I have to warm up my coffee because it gets cold before I can finish it, but I still get to enjoy every drop!

While the eggs are cooking, I toast a few pieces of bread (usually homemade sourdough) and make my coffee. I am a coffee snob and I like to freshly grind my beans. I made it a game with my daughter when she was very young, and now every time I start the grinder, she does a little jig while the beans grind. I go back and forth between loving my Melita and getting bored with it. These days I use a Bialettie stove-top espresso maker (3-cup version). It makes a great cup of strong coffee. I make a strong cafe au lait by scalding whole milk in a pan and adding it to my coffee. For a special treat, I’ll make a Cuban-style coffee (Miami Cuban, actually). It’s my version of that bullet-proof coffee that everyone is talking about these days.

Brew your dark coffee (preferably espresso), pour into cup. Add a sliver of butter, salt and sweetener and stir until butter is melted. Add a generous amount of scalded milk.

Buen provecho!

Chilean Eggs

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 8 minutes

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Chilean Eggs

Chilean eggs and Cuban coffee! Simple ingredients, quick prep, a great savory breakfast to enjoy...

Ingredients

  • butter for the pan (or your choice of healthy oil)
  • handful of diced tomatoes
  • 2-3 eggs (depending on how big the eggs are, how hungry I am and how much I share with the little one)
  • big dash of cumin
  • sprinkle of oregano
  • sprinkle of paprika
  • sprinkle of turmeric
  • salt & pepper to taste

Heat pan, add butter. When butter has melted, add diced tomatoes and add spices. Let tomatoes soften. Crack eggs directly into pan. Let them cook for ten seconds or so, then mix them in with the tomatoes gently with a fork (be careful if you are you using a non-stick pan to not scratch the pan! I don’t own any non-stick pans, but if you must, then at least take precautions and use a wooden fork). Continue to gently scramble in the pan until the eggs are cooked through and are uniformly mixed. You probably will still be able to see yolk and whites in some places, but that is the beauty of this dish.

Notes

* A note about ingredients: I always prefer fresh tomatoes from the garden or farmer’s market. I use whatever is ripest, whether it’s cherry tomatoes or plum or a small regular tomato. If it’s winter and there is nothing local available, I like to use canned tomatoes because I’m making an effort these days to be conscious of staying local and eating what is in season whenever possible.

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