Iced Maroon Tie

red tie

Why should I drink this?

Ever had a Thai tea before? That super sweet, energy boosting, blood sugar spiking Southeast Asian treat? If so, then I don’t need to explain how tasty it is, but I may need to explain why adding espresso to it is a good idea: if you’re a caffeine junky, thrill seeker, or just consider yourself adventurous then this will excite your senses more than your standard Thai tea!

This Maroon Tie is a dairy-free twist on the Red Tie, which is a typical Thai tea with one or two shots of espresso. I ran out of condensed milk and thought it might be a hoot to try making one of these without it and the results did not disappoint! Sweet, spicy, musky, and the espresso gives it a little bit of a chocolaty note. The caffeine kicks in fast, too, so If you need me, I’ll be learning Japanese while I draw up blueprints for a nuclear reactor. But first, let me show you how to get on my level!

Whatchoo need is…

  • Thai Tea leaves (3 Tbs)
  • A tea infuser
  • Hot water (1 Cup)
  • Espresso (2 shots)
  • Sugar (4 tsp)
  • A mug for infusing tea
  • A glass for serving the finished tea
  • Ice
  • A stirring stick or straw

Then you gotta:

  1. Place your infuser over the mug and add your Thai tea into the infuser. Pour your hot water over it. Allow the tea to steep for about 5 minutes (or 10 if you like it strong).
  2. Brew your espresso while you wait on your tea.
  3. Fill your glass with ice and pour your sugar on top.
  4. Once your tea is ready, pour it over the ice, but make sure to leave room for your espresso!
  5. Toss your espresso into the mix and give it all a good stir!
  6. Cool off and energize!

Cafe Mazagran

cafe-maz

Why should I drink this?

It’s too damn hot for all this coffee nonsense, right? WRONG! Take a tip from the Portuguese and sip on a Cafe Mazagran, one of the easiest espresso drinks you could ever make! It gets even better, though: there isn’t really any exact way to make a Cafe Mazagran, so you can take as many liberties with this drink as you like! For the sake of replication, however, I have provided a recipe that works for me every time.

Whatchoo need is…

  • Espresso (3 shots)
  • Brown Sugar (4 tsp)
  • A slice of lemon
  • Ice
  • A tall glass
  • A stirring spoon
  • (Optional) Rum (1 oz)

Then you gotta:

  1. Place your brown sugar at the bottom of your tall glass and then fill your glass with ice.
  2. (Optional) Pour your rum into the glass.
  3. Pour your espresso over the ice and stir thoroughly.
  4. Add your slice of lemon into the glass and gently stir it around into the espresso. This gives your drink a smooth hint of citrus. Best drank without a straw.

Equatorial Mocha

jungle

Why should I drink this?

Do you dig bananas? Are you groovin’ on some coconuts? Are you chill with some chocolate? Then why not have all three at once! Better yet, why not add some espresso and wake yourself up? Take a little sip of this hearty, creamy, deliciously sweet sampling of some of the tastiest parts of the tropics all in one cup!

Whatchoo need is:

  • Half a banana*
  • Full fat Coconut Milk (2/3 Cup)
  • Baker’s chocolate (1 oz)
  • Espresso (3 shots)
  • Milk (4 oz)
  • Sugar (1 tsp)
  • Small sauce pan
  • Whisk
  • Latte mug/coffee mug
  • (optional) Large wooden spoon
  • (optional) Coconut shreds
  • (optional) Milk frother
  • (optional) Skillet/pan

*For best results use an over-ripe, brown banana. It will taste sweeter and will make the first step of this drink easier for you.

Then you gotta…

  1. Throw your chocolate, banana, coconut milk, and sugar into your sauce pan. Place it on your stove at medium heat and whisk it all together until it turns into a hot, brown liquid. Be sure to beat out all of the solids! This may take a little muscle.
  2. Brew your espresso! Then throw it in a latte mug or whatever else you chose to drink your coffee from today!
  3. Pour your coconut-chocolate-banana-milk from your sauce pan into your mug over the espresso. You’ll notice the two liquids separating, just give them a good stir until they start to play nice.
  4. (Optional) Froth your milk and place it on top of your almost finished drink! Or if you don’t have a milk frother, you can simply place it in your sauce pan and heat it up until it’s steamy and pour that into your drink instead.
  5. (Optional) Take a good handful of coconut shreds and place them on your skillet. Place the skillet on your stove at medium-hi heat and stir with a wooden spoon until they get nice and golden brown. Once their ready, sprinkle them on top of your drink and enjoy!

 

Peanut Butter Mocha

Image

Why should I drink this?

Everyone has a weakness when it comes to candy. I have many, and one of them is peanut butter cups. If you enjoy the taste of creamy peanut butter and chocolate together, then I don’t need to explain the appeal of this drink to you. You’re already one of the good ones.

Whatchoo need is:

  • Hot chocolate (2/3 cup)*
  • Milk (1.5 Cups)
  • Peanut Butter (7 Tbs)**
  • Sugar (1-2 tsp)
  • Espresso (2 shots)
  • A mug (Pref. Latte Mug)
  • A sauce pan
  • A whisk
  • A stove
  • (Optional) Milk (4 oz)
  • (Optional) Milk frother

*Make it how you like it!

**I used unsweetened peanut butter, which required adding a little extra sugar to bring out the flavor.

Then you gotta…

  1. Toss your milk and peanut butter into your sauce pan and place that pan over your stove at medium heat. Start whisking until it’s all nice and smooth. Congratulations, you’ve just made peanut butter milk and you’re almost done!
  2. Take your hot chocolate and pour it into your mug, add your espresso, and then your peanut butter milk until your mug is full. Sweeten it to taste.
  3. (Optional) Use your milk frother to get some nice latte foam to put on top of your peanut butter mocha!

S’more Mochaccino

smore

Why should I drink this?

You’re killin’ me, Smalls!! Why wouldn’t you wanna drink a s’more latte?! Hot chocolate, fluffy, foamy marshmallow, and graham cracker dust on top? You got excited reading all of that, didn’t you? You’re fantasizing about it right now, aren’t you? Then allow me to help you make your dreams come true.

Whatchoo need is:

  • Espresso (2 shots)*
  • Marshmallow Fluff (7 Tbs)
  • Baker’s Chocolate (1/2 oz)
  • Milk (1 cup)
  • Vanilla extract (1 tsp)
  • White sugar (1 tsp)
  • Graham cracker crumbs
  • A coffee mug (preferably a latte mug)
  • A small sauce pan
  • A whisk or whisk-like device

*I won’t love you less if you use regular coffee instead of espresso. Just don’t tell the barista police.

Then you gotta…

  1. Take 1/2 of your cup of milk and toss it in your mug. Add your baker’s chocolate in, too. Now heat it up in the microwave, stirring occasionally until you have hot chocolate!
  2. Take the other 1/2 cup of milk and pour it in your sauce pan. Add the marshmallow fluff, white sugar, and vanilla extract in as well.
  3. Place the sauce pan over your stove at medium heat and whisk until everything is well integrated.
  4. Once the stuff in your sauce pan starts lookin’ foamy, take it off the heat.
  5. Add your shots of espresso (or coffee, you cheater) into your mug with the hot chocolate.
  6. Gently pour your foamy marshmallowy goodness on top of your caffeinated hot chocolate until it comes all the way to the top!
  7. Take your graham cracker crumbs and sprinkle them on top until it looks as pretty as can be!

Green Tea Rum Infusion

green-tea

What’s in that bottle?

Two simple ingredients: rum and green tea! This is one of the easiest infusions you could ever make and it only takes 12 hours to do! It tastes great as a mixer with actual green tea and honey syrup like in my Japanese Seafoam cocktail or in other drinks that need a little hint of green tea flavoring. I wouldn’t recommend drinking it on it’s own, however, as the flavor is very subtle. As with most teas, adding a little something sweet to it brings out all of it’s tastiness. If you’re going to use this in future cocktails, make sure you put something like a simple syrup or a liqueur that complements the flavor of the green tea.

Lemme break down this hecka simple process for you now!

Whatchoo need is…

  • Loose leaf green tea (1 cup)
  • White rum (750 ml bottle)
  • An infusion jar or bottle
  • Cheese clothe / coffee filter
  • Fine mesh siev
  • A large bowl or measuring cup
  • 12 hours of your life

Then you gotta:

  1. Place your loose green tea into your infusion jar/bottle and pour your rum over it.
  2. Seal it up nice and tight and shake it real good 2-3 times every hour for 12 hours.
  3. When it’s ready it will have a dark brown color to it.
  4. Strain out the loose tea leaves by placing a cheese cloth or coffee filter over a fine mesh sieve and place that over a large bowl (or measuring cup for easy pouring).
  5. Once all of your loose tea leaves are strained out, pour your green tea infused rum back into the infusion container! So simple, yes?

You, Me, and the Bourgeois-Tea

IMG_1420

Why should I drink this?

Because you’re not just a bourbon drinker, you’re a classy bourbon connoisseur! You want to have a new kind of bourbon cocktail that isn’t too difficult to whip together, but still makes you feel like an adult while you drink it. So let me introduce you to my fancy little friend…

Whatchoo need is…

  • Strong Black Tea (1/2 Cup)
  • Honey Syrup (3 Tbs)
  • Bulleit Rye Bourbon (2 oz)
  • Amaretto (1/4 oz)
  • A cocktail shaker
  • Ice
  • An old fashioned glass
  • Measuring Utensils

Then you gotta:

  1. Brew your black tea and mix in your honey syrup while it’s still hot.
  2. Allow your tea to cool to room temperature.
  3. Throw some ice in your cocktail shaker and pour your Bourbon, Amaretto, and honey-sweetened tea in.
  4. Shake it, baby!
  5. Pour that bad boy into an old fashioned glass straight up!

Japanese Seafoam

green-tea

Why should I drink this?

Some people say green tea tastes like a cup of hot lawn-clippings, this drink aims to fix such a person’s wagon (albeit with a honey-ladened, boozy bias)! I love a nice cup of green tea, and while it definitely has a grassy taste it’s nothing like the grass off of your front lawn (or at least it shouldn’t be). Not to mention it’s full of healthy antioxidants and lots of other (mostly) credible health benefits. Of course all of these nutritional pros are about to be hurled into the sun by the inclusion of rum, but it is fun to pretend we’re being healthy isn’t it? Now let’s make believe…

Whatchoo need is…

  • Green Tea Infused White Rum* (1oz)
  • Green Tea (1/2 cup)
  • Honey syrup (3/4 oz)
  • Ice
  • A cocktail shaker
  • A rocks glass
  • Measuring utensils

*If you’ve never infused your own green tea flavored spirits before, I’ll have some instructions on how I made mine up soon!

Then you gotta:

  1. Pour all of your ingredients into a cocktail shaker half filled with ice and shake it ’til it’s frosty!
  2. Strain it all into your rocks glass straight up (that means without any ice in your glass) and enjoy!

Apfelkuchen

apple_pie

Why should I drink this?

You like the taste of apple pie? You’d better, because that’s what Apfelkuchen means. You like German beer? I hope so, because those are the only qualifications you need to enjoy this drink! Some may say that by adding in extra ingredients I am defiling the sanctity of this fine hefeweizen, but to them I say: socks are meant to be sorted, drinks are meant to be mixed. If you’re still on board with me, then let’s set sail for some tasty Apfelkuchen!

Whatchoo need is…

  • Chilled Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey (2 oz)
  • Chilled Ginger Beer (6 oz)
  • Chilled Hofbrau Munchen (2 oz)*
  • A chilled long island glass
  • Measuring shot glass or jigger
  • Stirrer/swizzle stick

*Yes, it must be Hofbrau Munchen! Accept no substitutions! Unless you can recommend a different beer that tastes exactly like it then you’ve gotta trust me on this. It’s worth it!

Why’s everything gotta be chilled?

Ask your bartender: adding ice to any drink affects the flavor of the drink. Sometimes this is a good thing, but sometimes it really isn’t. Don’t you dare put ice in this drink, because if you do I’ll find out and you don’t want to know what happens then!

Then you gotta:

Pay close attention to the order here! Your taste buds will quiz you on it later…

  1. Pour your chilled Fireball into your chilled glass first.
  2. Slowly pour your cold ginger beer on top of that Fireball.
  3. Top off your glass with your Hofbrau Munchen.
  4. Give your ingredients a gentle stir from your swizzle stick or stirrer. Don’t over work it, though! Carbonated ingredients don’t like to be agitated.
  5. Drink dat Apfelkuchen!

Coconut Caucasian

Image

Why should I drink this?

Do you like White Russians? Are you lactose intolerant or otherwise giving dairy the heave-ho from your life? My girlfriend falls into the second category and one thing that she says she misses most is being able to drink Bailey’s. It was my solemn duty to find her a vegan Bailey’s recipe and make it for her, and fortunately it did not take long to find one here.

As I read through the recipe, I realized that with some modifications it could also be used to make a very tasty Dairy-Free White Russian, and what’s more it could be made into a party-sized quantity! I don’t know about you, but after drink number four or five I’m done trying to be an artist and I just want to pour something into my glass that won’t kill me, so a pitcher of these in the fridge when I’m expecting people over is very handy. Now let’s get to the dirty-flirty, but brace yourself because this is a big ol’ list of ingredients:

Whatchoo need is…

  • Coconut milk (2 cans 13.5 oz)
  • Brown Sugar (1/3 Cup)
  • Kahlua (3/4 cup)
  • Cold Brewed Coffee (1 Cup)
  • Vanilla Extract (1 Tbs)
  • Vodka (3/4 Cup)
  • Water (1.5 Cups)
  • Cinnamon stick (1 whole)
  • Fresh Ginger Root (1 inch piece)
  • Nutmeg (1/4 tsp crushed*)
  • Whole Cloves (1/2 tsp)
  • Whole Black peppercorns (1/2 tsp)
  • A small sauce pan
  • A large pitcher
  • A stirring spoon or whisk
  • Measuring spoons & cups

*Crushed > Ground because you’re going to need to strain all these spices out. If all you can work with is ground nutmeg then its coo’ baby! To make it a little less stressful on you during the straining process, put the nutmeg in a tea bag.

Then you gotta:

  1. Cold brew some coffee. This step will take the longest so get it out of the way first!
  2. Pour your 1.5 cup of water into your sauce pan.
  3. Take your cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, ginger root and place them in the sauce pan. Place pan on the stove and set heat to high. Allow the water to boil for about 15 minutes, then take the pan off the heat and allow it to cool for at least 2 hours.
  4. Once your spiced water is cooled, strain out all of the solids so all you’re left with is some spiced tea.
  5. Pour your spiced tea into your large pitcher, then add in your coconut milk, Kahlua, vodka, brown sugar, vanilla extract, and whisk* it all together!
  6. Place your pitcher in the fridge to chill, and when you’re ready to serve it up, give it quick stir and pour it into some glasses over ice!

**I prefer a whisk because brown sugar can be a pain to break up.

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