If you are coffee lover, we have soooooo much to talk about! I genuinely do not remember what life was like before I've started drinking coffee. I do, however, remember trying it for the first time. Mum is a coffee fan number 1, so it wasn't very difficult to be tempted to try this brown/ sometimes blackest of the black of juices. And let me tell you... I was disgusted! How can anyone in the right state of mind be drinking this bitter, stinky, warm and dark, mud like water??? Ohhh, how little I knew back then...
It didn't took long until I was caffeine addict, I think it's started in high school, before final exams were taking place, and all what I was feeling like doing was snoozing instead of studying. Watching the whole of my family enjoying gigantic cups of freshly brewed coffee every day probably had something to do with it as well. A day in our house starts with a cup of coffee. The smell of it would wake me up every morning, then seeing my parents and brothers with a cuppa of steaming, fresh brew, convinced me to give it a go. And I never looked back since.
This was just the beginning of my caffeine adventures. Back then, we were using whole bean coffee and coffee grinder (the noise that thing made! jeeeeezzzzzz!), but then for some reason, trying to go with the spirit of time I guess, mum decided to switched to instant coffee. She quickly regretted that decision, as one of my brothers was using about 4 spoons of it in one go, at least 5 times a day. I swear he had caffeine in his veins instead of blood back then! According to him, instant coffee was not as strong as whole bean. So mum started buying both, keeping everyone happy, as she always does.
After this, I discovered the joy of drinking espresso. As I have strange tendency of never finishing my drinks (it drives everyone nuts, but I can't help it, I've got a 'thing' for not finishing drinks, that's all), this was perfect solution. Just one or two sips and you are done with the whole thing! And the buzz!!! Did I mention the buzz??? I was ready to pick up bloody mountains after one single espresso! After building tolerance to this devilishly strong beverage, I decided to double it up, and doppio become my new best friend.
Conveniently, I was working as a barmaid in the restaurant and had an easy access to this ginormous coffee machine, so this is where I was spending most of my time, by the coffee machine, topping up on doppios all day long (thinking about it now, I would probably limit the consumption of them). But ohhh boy, I did like my coffee to be strong back then. I'm more of the 'strong but smooth' nowadays, I like my coffee to have a foam, but not too much, it still has to be strong, but not espresso strong, and it has to be a perfect combination and proportion of coffee, milk and sugar. That's why, I'm normally the one making coffee for myself, not because I don't trust the others to make it (OK, I don't), but because I'm so particular about how I like it.
I do not have one of the fancy coffee machines at home. I do not see the point, and to be totally honest, I think it's probably for my own safety, as it's been proved in the past, that when faced with the coffee machine, I will not leave it alone until it will run out of coffee. Caffettiera coffee is my choice at home. But I do go through quite a lot of instant, freeze dried stuff as well. But we all know that drinking a hot coffee can be a bit challenging when it is quite warm outside (it doesn't happen often over here, but on these rare occasions...), and that's why you should try this recipe. Perfect for summer days, ideal to sip outside, delicious, sweet, with hints of cinnamon, vanilla and chocolate...do I need to go on about it any more? If you are a true coffee fan, do not underestimate the power of iced coffee!
You will have to prepare ice cubes in a small advance, and if you prefer, you can make your own almond milk, but it works just as well with the shop version. Add some chocolate on top of it, and you are on a stairway to coffee heaven. You may get addicted to this stuff! So just remember that I did warn you...
Vanilla Bean Iced Coffee
- 2 cups almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- ⅓ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tbs agave nectar you can use maple syrup too
- 1 cup freshly brewed coffee cooled (freeze dried or full bean, your choice)
- dark chocolate optional
Chocolate sauce (optional)
- 2 tablespoon . cocoa
- 2 tablespoon . coconut oil
- 2 tablespoon . agave nectar or maple syrup
- Prepare ice cubes in advance by pouring freshly brewed, cooled coffee into ice cubes molds and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- In a blender, mix together almond milk with agave, vanilla bean and cinnamon until combined.
- Fill the glass/ jar with coffee ice cubes and pour milk over them.
- Top up with chocolate sauce and grated chocolate.
- In a small pan, melt coconut oil over a small heat, add cocoa and mix until well combined.
- Add agave nectar and stir well, boil for another minute or until smooth texture.
- Top up with chocolate sauce and grated chocolate.
Please note that all my recipes are developed and tested in metric grams. I recommend that you use digital scales for a more accurate results. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.