Sunday, October 14, 2018

Cold Brew Coffee

The best part of waking up is having cold-brew in your cup...

About 6 months ago I started cold-brewing my morning coffee. I had read that cold brew is much less acidic and less bitter than hot brewed coffee – and it's true. (If you have a stomach acid problem this is for you.) You can make a bunch of it, refrigerate it and it's on-hand every morning or whenever you want it. By the time I put a mug in the microwave to heat up, turn on the Today Show, get my paper off the front porch and return to the kitchen it's ready - 90 seconds.

I cold-brew my coffee in a French Press. You can brew it in anything but you will need some kind of sieve to separate the grounds from the coffee when it's done steeping. You need to use a medium grind coffee, nothing too fine. I use 6 scoops of grounds to 2 cups of water in my press.  Stir it well once you have added the water to the grounds. I hear that using bottled water or distilled water makes it even better. Let it sit on your countertop for 12 hours, strain, place it in a container and refrigerate. It keeps for a week. It's also great for making an iced coffee - just add milk and ice.

Add the cold-brew coffee to your mug about 1/3 or 1/2 full and fill the rest with water (or milk) – it's not meant to be drunk full strength. You can adjust the ratio per your taste. The coffee grounds go farther as well because cold brewing extracts more flavor and is more intense.

If you are having a lot of people over and you know your coffee maker can't keep up make cold-brew in advance.


Monday, April 30, 2018

Best-Ever Grilled Cheese

This is a simple and fool-proof way to make a great grilled cheese sandwich. Don't try to spread hard butter across a soft piece of bread. You know what happens - the bread tears and you get pockets of butter. Here's the simple and easy way... 
Melt 3 tablespoons of butter on low heat in a small skillet - the size of your sandwich. If doing 2, then use a large skillet and add 5 tablespoons of butter.

Once the butter is melted place a slice of bread in the skillet, press it slightly and let it soak up the butter for a few seconds. Remove it and place it buttered-side up on a plate. Now place the next slice of bread in the pan and move it around until all of the remaining butter is soaked up into the bread. 
Now put your cheese on the bread in the skillet and top with other slice of buttered bread. You will end up with an evenly golden browned and very crispy sandwich.
I like to use both American and Swiss cheese. Of course you can use any cheese or combination that floats your boat.
Sometimes I make a hot ham and cheese by adding a layer of cheese, a little mustard and then a few thin slices of ham.