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justification of experiments

So this weekend proved the success of some experiments I made last weekend. The Cranky Boys(and co.) were over for scotch and amusements, which included good cheeses and snacks. I pulled out some beer bread that I'd made from a random internet recipe last weekend - flour, baking powder, and beer (or soda), and not much else. I accidentally used one of flechyr's better winter ales, but it gave a nice strong flavor that's mellowed over the week - it garnered compliments from everyone, which is always nice. I want to try the recipe again with a stout, and maybe a pinch of  sugar to combat a bit of the sour yeasty flavor that can be a little much when it's fresh from the oven. Or, well, butter slathered on makes it quite yummy too :D

The other experiment was a flavored sugar syrup for coffee. In an attempt to replicate the very popular pumpkin spice latte, I again turned to The Internets. There are several recipes out there, many of which seem to use canned pumpkin, which I don't quite get. If there's actual pumpkin flavor in those lattes, I'd be surprised. The other main flavor component, and what I taste in the commercial version, is of course the spice - cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, clove maybe. Which was fine, except I'd apparently forgotten to restock ginger, and can't find the nutmeg I swore I had  o_O  Alas! But I'd picked up a bit of - well, Pumpkin Spice. ::shrug:: So equal parts sugar and water, and set it to simmer with a mix of pumpkin spice and cinnamon, plus an actual cinnamon stick in for a little extra whatever, then strain through cheesecloth to keep the grit to a  minimum. I hadn't had a chance to test it out last weekend. Saturday morning, on a pure whim, I steamed up some milk, added some syrup, and just dumped it into my normal morning coffee. And then I made the mistake of handing it to flechyr to try.  So after I steamed up some more milk and syrup... :D  We had some again this morning. With the greater volume of regular coffee the taste is pleasantly subtle. I'll throw some actual espresso at this and see how a "proper" latte works up flavor-wise, but I'm generally declaring this to be a success. Given proper motivation and brain cells, I'm thinking of working out a few more flavors and possibly bottling for the consumption of others. It's not like coffee is the only use for this stuff.  We'll see - I know better than to make actual plans; this is the sort of thing I try when I'm otherwise bored but wanting to feel creative. 

So a generically good weekend, if not particularly productive. Right now I need to go soak a little shawl thing so I can block it out and see just how small it really is :/  I have more of the yarn involved, but I don't know how much more , and do I even care... And I 'm pretty sure I don't, except I don't know what I'll do with the little shawlette either. Lots of shrugging will now be had. Eh - so long as I'm having fun, right ? :)


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 8th, 2010 04:52 am (UTC)

Both sound very good. I may have to bug you for the internet address for the pumpkin spice sugar thing. ;)

Also, in terms of sugar thing, I have caramel corn for you. Some was made, and The Gypsy Kyrstyan's Tythe was set aside.
Mar. 8th, 2010 05:11 pm (UTC)
W00t! Te Gypsy gladly accepts tribute! :D

I copied my version of the recipes into a Google document, which I will cheerfully open to share with you if you like. Otherwise I just used Google-fu to search on 'pumpkin spice latte recipe' and browsed the list. I didn't save any of the links in particular, as everyone seemed to have variations of the same general proportions - the only real difference seemed to be canned pumpkin/no pumpkin, and I didn't want pumpkin bits so I ignored all those recipes.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )