Last week poor Andy had ONE day one summer vacation, before his awful and boring chemistry summer school started, so we went out to a nice lunch at THE best Mexican restaurant ever (hint: the chef is going to be on Top Chef Master that starts tonight!).
I have been loving this restaurant for years--and although the food is fantastic--the thing I look forward to the most is the Cafe de Olla. It's a Mexican-style coffee that is sweet with a touch of orange and a hint of cinnamon. It is fantastic! I had so many cups, I don't think I think I slept for a week!
Here's a pic, but my camera was being wonky...
See the orange peel in there? It's SO good!
Anyway, I found a recipe on the Internets--I have made it before, but not for awhile--but I will be making a big batch of it soon. I think the iced version would be so good in the summer!
2 cups of water
The zest of 1 orange
1 whole cinnamon stick
1 cup pilloncillo* (or substitute 1 cup of dark brown sugar)
1 big pot of strong coffee
*Pilloncillo is a minimally processed Mexican raw sugar, sold dark brown in cones. It has a unique and very sweet taste, and is worth searching out. It can be easily found in most any Mexican grocery. Dark brown sugar is a reasonable substitute.
To prepare cafe de olla...
Before dinner, add the water, pilloncillo, orange zest and cinnamon to a saucepan and simmer until combined and reduced to about 1 third of its original volume. It's best to simmer slowly, as the syrupy liquid can easily boil over if left unattended even for a minute over higher heat (the aroma that will percolate through the kitchen is pleasant for a leisurely simmer down in any case). Reserve the syrup for later mixing.
After dinner, prepare a pot of coffee as normal. Pour the coffee into mugs and sweeten with the spiced syrup to taste. Serve hot, without cream or sugar.
That's it. Easy-peasy, and very tasty – and a nice change of pace from the everyday cup of Joe.
Any extra syrup can be stored for ages in the fridge. Remove the cinnamon stick (or the eventual taste of cinnamon can get very strong).
This can also be made well in advance, pre mixed with coffee and left to chill in the fridge for a Mexican iced coffee. Serve in tall glass well filled with ice.
Give it a try!
Here are a few more pics from the restaurant:
Pickle's favorite new face--"pig face":
Andy enjoying some crazy-delicious crunchy pork tacos: And one more of The Pickle--still with the pig face--but eating her Mexico City-style quesadillas: