Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Recipe of the month: Iced Caramel Macchiato

Although I love coffee almost as much as life itself, I'm not a Starbucks person. I make trips to the popular coffee house probably 6 times a year or fewer! I have my reasons. Maybe it's because I get my coffee fix in the comfort of my home and that is enough to see me through the day. It is also too much of an effort for me to walk all the way to the nearest Starbucks. Not to mention, the portion sizes are too big for me (even the small size) and not being a black coffee drinker, I tend to worry that it will become a habit and I really could do without all the added sugar and calories in my life! 

Having said that, I love some of the desserts at Starbucks and I do like to indulge once in a while. When it comes to their coffee, I have a clear preference - the Caramel Macchiato. Depending on my mood, the time of day and the weather, I either go for the hot version or the cold one. Milk with vanilla-flavored syrup, strong espresso and topped with a buttery caramel drizzle for an oh-so-sweet finish. Hot or cold....what's not to love, amirite? 

For this recipe, I prepared the vanilla syrup and the caramel sauce from scratch (easy-peasy!). If you have store-bought versions ready on hand then it'll take you even lesser time to put this drink together. You can prepare the espresso using a macchinetta or espresso machine. I used my stovetop Bialetti which I absolutely love! After that, it is a matter of layering the drink and you are done! You can enjoy the individual layers as they naturally settle or stir them together, whichever you prefer. 

Cold, sweet and refreshing....this layered espresso drink is for all you coffee lovers out there 😊

Iced Caramel Macchiato

Preparation time: 15-20 min
Servings: Two 8 oz cups or one 16 oz cup
Recipe category: Cold drink/American
Recipe level: Easy

4-5 tsp vanilla syrup, store-bought or homemade
1 1/2 cup milk (dairy or non-dairy)
2 oz (~ 60ml) espresso
Ice cubes
Caramel sauce to drizzle, store-bought or homemade

Note: Divide all the ingredients in half if making two 8 oz cups

How to prepare the vanilla syrup:

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tbsp vanilla extract

Method: Bring the water and sugar to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Continue to cook at a rapid simmer until the mixture thickens slightly, about 4-5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in vanilla, and cool to room temperature. Store in an air-tight jar. 

How to make the caramel sauce: 

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tbsp heavy cream
2 tbsp (25g) packed brown sugar
a pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Method: Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add heavy cream, brown sugar, and salt. Stir well. Bring to a gentle simmer and allow to cook for a few minutes, until thickened, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and mix in vanilla. Transfer to a mason jar with a lid for storage.

Making the Iced Caramel Macchiato

1. Add 4-5 tsp vanilla syrup to the cup first

2. Slowly add in 1-1/2 cups of milk

3. Add a few small cubes of ice

4. Carefully pour 2 oz (~60ml) espresso on top

5. Drizzle with caramel sauce

6. Enjoy!


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