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Posts from the ‘Sweets’ Category

How About a Great Cup of Coffee with a little art on the side?

Magefesa Cafetera

Magefesa Cafetera

The good people at Magefesa contacted us recently and wanted us to try a couple more of their products.  Since we have been using their products for several years now, we were anxious to try  the new ones.

One of the products they sent us was this beautiful coffee pot.  I love coffee and we have a couple of coffee pots that we use.  We have one of those single serve coffee pots where you put those little pods in the maker, put your coffee cup in the machine, push a button and you have a great, hot cup of coffee.  The great thing is that you have a hot cup of coffee every time.  It doesn’t get burned from sitting on the warmer nor does it get cold because it’s been in a thermos for a while.  It’s hot.  The problem is that you use already ground coffee that the pod makers give you.  So, it just doesn’t taste as fresh as it could.

Then, we also have one of those coffee makers that grind your beans and give you a pot of coffee in a thermos carafe.  The coffee is good, but it doesn’t stay hot for long.  And, I usually have half a pot leftover and feel compelled to drink it the next day so I don’t waste it.  So, I warm it up in the microwave.  It’s not exactly yuk, but it is old coffee.

The Magefesa coffee maker makes coffee the old fashioned way.  It perks it.  It is slow food coffee.  You grind the beans, put them in the little basket over a container of fresh, cold water.  Screw the top on, put it on the stove on low heat and wait for that perfect cup of coffee.

Coffee blog 2

It is perfect for that afternoon pick me up, but it tastes so good, that it feels luxurious. It is definitely worth the wait of allowing the coffee to perk up into the top container. The box says that it makes 6 cups (the tiny, European cups), but I have found that it makes enough for two  cups of strong coffee.

While we are waiting for our coffee to perk, I will tell you what we’ve been up to the last couple of weeks.

The Beach at Lake Tahoe

The Beach at Lake Tahoe

I am still in Lake Tahoe.  I have not been back to Placerville since I took the trout down to Yes!Chef! because I didn’t want to clean them nor cook them.  Since that time, Ralph has brought us more fish (this time he kindly cleaned them) and Yes!Chef! made Trout Almandine with fresh green beans.  It was quite yummy.

Trout Almandine

Trout Almandine

There’s nothing like fresh trout cooked well.

Happy Anniversary to us

Happy Anniversary to us

Nothing except lobster on the grill. Last week was our anniversary and Yes!Chef! surprised me with some red roses, lobster and artichokes.  He even took the day off from work and we drove around Lake Tahoe to celebrate.  The trip is about 75 miles around the lake and takes a couple of hours because of traffic, or wanting to stop and take pictures, or seeing a good place to take the dog for a walk. And, no, he did not swim across the lake to demonstrate his love for me (although, I’m sure he would if I asked him.  He’s just that kind of guy.).  I was just using a couple of iPhone apps that added the water and the rainbow.

Scenes of Lake Tahoe

Scenes of Lake Tahoe

I took these photos on our trip around the lake. I’ve been taking a Conceptual Photography class, so I did add some drama to a couple of them to submit to the class.  The large picture on the left and the smaller photo on the lower right were taken on the west shore near Homewood.  The top right one was taken at Chimney Beach, a little known beach on the east shore. The trip was beautiful and relaxing, but this time of year (early August), the west and north shore of Tahoe are very busy.  Traffic was definitely an issue, but we weren’t in any hurry.  At some point I’d like to stop in Tahoe City and walk around the quaint little community, but this was not the time.  I’ll probably drag Yes!Chef! over there again in the fall for some exploration.

Studio Artist Tour

Studio Artist Tour

Yes!Chef! checks out local art

Yes!Chef! checks out local art

We also went to the South Lake Tahoe Artists Studio Tour and saw a lot of beautiful local art, met the artists and saw some great artist studios.

Sculptor David Foster's Studio

Sculptor David Foster’s Studio

Kit Night's Studio

Kit Night’s Studio

Now that you are all relaxed, pull up a chair and I’ll share a couple of recipes that I made with the coffee.

Coffee and Ice Cream

Coffee and Ice Cream

As I was trying out the coffee, I enjoyed my first cup with a little cream.  I then decided that such a rich, deep coffee would go great with a really good ice cream, or in this case, gelato.  I purchased Breyers Gelato Indulgences Triple Chocolate.  I put a scant scoop in each small glass cup.  This particular gelato is divided into two sides…dark chocolate and milk chocolate.  Both have a white chocolatey sauce and chocolate curls on top.  I like dark chocolate and Yes!Chef! prefers milk chocolate.  So this particular combination works well for both of us.  I let the coffee almost come to room temperature and poured it over the top.  I also topped it off with a little whipped cream from a can.  I would have preferred freshly whipped cream, but this was available, so I used it.  The gelato slowly melted into the coffee, making a rich and decadent tasting desert.

You might wonder why I didn’t blend it.  I wanted something simple and elegant.  I wanted it to be a desert more than a blended drink.  By the time I got to the bottom, the gelato was melted and infused with coffee.  And, there were a few chocolate curls left to add texture. Total yum for a coffee and chocolate lover.

Next , I wanted to make a really good iced coffee.  So, I let the coffee come to room temperature and then I made some coffee ice cubes. When they were done, I poured chilled coffee into a cup filled with the cubes.  I like cream in my coffee, so I did put a little on the top.  It was quite refreshing, especially for a summer day.  I took it out on the deck and waved to the neighbors as they rode by on their bikes.

Coffee Ice Cubes for Iced Coffee

Coffee Ice Cubes for Iced Coffee

Lastly, I perked up a fresh batch (it smells so good as it is perking) and then chilled it.  I put a scoop of a dark chocolate gelato in the blender, poured in the coffee and added some coffee ice cubes.  Then I poured a little cream on top and blended the whole thing together.

Blended coffee ice cream drink

Blended coffee ice cream drink

This drink was much better than any blended coffee drink I have had from the “Famous Coffee Shop”.  Perfect for an afternoon pick me up and a little taste of sweetness.

I do have a few other ideas for this coffee, which I will try later on.  The great thing about this coffee maker (aside from the rich, beautiful coffee flavor that it produces), is that it doesn’t make a huge pot of coffee.  I can make this coffee in about 20 minutes and either share a cup with Yes!Chef! or make several wonderful deserts or blended drinks.

a beautiful cup of coffee in the morning

a beautiful cup of coffee in the morning

This post was not so much about Yes!Chef!’s food or his recipes, but I will tell you that he thoroughly enjoyed my experimentation with the coffee and he especially enjoyed a simple cup of delicious coffee.

We will soon be testing a great Paella Pan that Magefasa sent us and I can’t wait.  Yes!Chef! already has a recipe ready to go.  It makes a lot, so we will probably have to invite the neighbors or some family members.

But, until that time, I will leave you with this:

Coffee blog 12

 

They both pretty much make the same face when I am saying something silly or telling them to smile for the camera.  (You see what I have to put up with.)

Thistles

Thistles

And a Happy Fairy to make you smile.

Joy

Joy

Please may we have S’more? With Bacon? (Indoor Gourmet S’mores)

untitled-6-2-web

Can it possibly be Labor Day already? The last of summer.  The last hurrah.  No more beach picnics.  Kids are in school. Sigh.

But, even if you can’t have campfires (like here in the Sierras because of the drought) or it’s too cold to go to the beach, you can still make these Indoor Gourmet S’mores.

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Cherry Clafouti…Gesundheit

Cherry Clafoutis

Cherry Clafoutis

Clafoutis definition:  Baked French dessert of fruit, traditionally black cherries, arranged in a buttered dish, and covered with a thick flan-like batter. The Clafoutis is dusted with powdered sugar, served warm and sometimes served with cream.

Gesundheit: used to wish good health, especially to one who has just sneezed.

I have made Clafoutis before, but with peaches or berries, which I guess isn’t really, technically, a clafoutis.  I also read somewhere that traditional Clafoutis are made with the pits still in the cherries.  When I discovered that we had no cherry pitter in the house and I couldn’t find one in a couple of stores I looked in, I felt like leaving the pits in.

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Deck the Halls Holiday Home Tour Finale and Saltine Toffee to send you on your way, hey!

And Merry Christmas to all!

Merry Christmas from The Elves

Merry Christmas from The Elves

This is the happiest time of year for the Elf Family and they are especially impressed with the last two homes on our Virtual Holiday Home Tour.

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Deck The Halls Holiday Home Tour Part II AND Is fudge a bad word?

Welcome Holiday Home Tours

Well, here we are with another couple of Virtual Holiday Home Tours.  I am very excited to showcase these beautiful homes with their gorgeous decorations.  Let’s get right to it.

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