COFFEE TIME!

IT’S COFFEE TIME! Wake up and smell the coffee!

Take a Break, Read this Blog about Coffee and Have A Hot Cup of Joe!

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Four Seasons Beverly Wilshire (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Welcome to the dark side!

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Coffee Service – French Press Iced Coffee with cream

Coffee is a brewed drink prepared from roasted coffee beans, which are the seeds of berries from the Coffea plant. The plant is native to subtropical Africa and some islands in southern Asia. The plant was exported from Africa to countries around the world and coffee plants are now cultivated in over 70 countries, primarily in the equatorial regions of the Americas, Southeast Asia, India, and Africa. The two most commonly grown are the highly regarded arabica, and the less sophisticated but stronger and more hardy robusta. Once ripe, coffee beans are picked, processed, and dried. Dried coffee beans are roasted to varying degrees, depending on the desired flavor. Roasted beans are ground and brewed to produce coffee as a beverage. (from Wikipedia)

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Illustration of Coffea arabica plant and seeds

“Enjoyin’ my coffee. Finishing my coffee.” ~ Walter Sobchak in “The Big Lebowski”

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“I like cappuccino, actually. But even a bad cup of coffee is better than no coffee at all.”
~David Lynch

Coffee and Donuts.
Today is Flashback Friday!
Sugar High Me!

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“Buy Tuscany” event at the Italian Cultural Institute (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

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ESPRESSO:

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Noble Coffee – Espresso with whipped cream

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“Our culture runs on coffee and gasoline, the first often tasting like the second.”
~ Edward Abbey

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AM Coffee and Pastries in the Press Room at the 9th Annual Travel & Adventure Show – Long Beach Convention Center (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

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Enjoying my coffee. (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

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Coffee and Strudel at the Sugar Cafe in San Francisco (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

“I have measured out my life with coffee spoons.” ~ T.S. Eliot

Coffee is brewed by several methods: boiling, steeping, or pressure cooking. Brewing coffee by boiling was the earliest method, and Turkish coffee is an example of this method. It is prepared by grinding or pounding the seeds to a fine powder, then adding it to water and bringing it to the boil for no more than an instant in a pot called a cezve or, in Greek, a bríki. This produces a strong coffee with a layer of foam on the surface and sediment (which is not meant for drinking) settling at the bottom of the cup.

Coffee percolators and automatic coffeemakers brew coffee use gravity. In an automatic coffeemaker, hot water drips onto coffee grounds that are held in a paper, plastic, or perforated metal coffee filter, which allows the water to seep through the ground coffee while extracting its oils and essences. The liquid drips through the coffee and the filter into a carafe or pot, and the spent grounds are retained in the filter.

In a percolator, boiling water is forced into a chamber above a filter by steam pressure created by boiling. The water then seeps through the grounds, and the process is repeated until terminated by removing it from the heat, by means an internal timer/thermostat that turns off the heat when the pot reaches a certain temperature.

Coffee may be brewed by steeping in a device such as a French press (also known as a cafetière, coffee press or coffee plunger). Ground coffee and hot water are combined in a cylindrical vessel and left to brew for a few minutes. A circular filter which fits tightly in the cylinder fixed to a plunger is then pushed down from the top to force the grounds to the bottom. The filter retains the grounds at the bottom as the coffee is poured from the container. Within the first minute of brewing 95% of the caffeine is released from the coffee bean. Because the coffee grounds are in direct contact with the water, all the coffee oils remain in the liquid, making it a stronger beverage. This method of brewing leaves more sediment than in coffee made by an automatic coffee machine. 

The French press method’s sediment issue can be minimized by using the right type of grinder. For most brewing methods a burr grinder is superior because the grind is more even, the grind size can be adjusted and it uniformly grinds the beans into consistently-sized grinds, allowing the coffee to settle uniformly and be trapped by the press. 

The espresso method forces hot pressurized and vaporized water through ground coffee. As a result of brewing under high pressure, the espresso beverage is more concentrated (as much as 10 to 15 times the quantity of coffee to water as gravity-brewing methods can produce) and has a more complex physical and chemical constitution. A well-prepared espresso has a reddish-brown foam called crema that floats on the surface. Other pressurized water methods include the moka pot and vacuum coffee makers (Nespresso & Keurig machines).

Cold brew coffee is made by steeping coarsely ground beans in cold water for several hours, then filtering them. This results in a brew lower in acidity than most hot-brewing methods.

ICED ESPRESSO:

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Iced Coffee with Breakfast

“I never laugh until I’ve had my coffee.” ~ Clark Gable

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Iced Espresso with Chinese Food

“Without my morning coffee I’m just like a dried up piece of roast goat.”
~ Johann Sebastian Bach

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Starbuck’s Venti Mocha Frappachino with whipped cream

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Coffee and Dessert

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Pacific Palm Hotel Resort (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

“Once you wake up and smell the coffee, it’s hard to go back to sleep.” ~ Fran Drescher

NOTE: This Blog was written to break the stream of Ashland Roadtrip Blogs! Enjoy it!
New Blog! Spring Roadtrip 2016 to Ashland Oregon> http://wp.me/p3dhVM-35M

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Make Coffee, Not War

 

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How do you like your coffee?

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Chocolate Eclairs & Cream Puffs recipe

Chocolate Eclairs and Cream Puffs

Here’s a great recipe that I found online:

eclair

Makes about 12 small eclairs or about 18 cream puffs

Dough
6 tbsp (¾ stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 tsp sugar
½ tsp kosher salt
¾ cup water
¾ cup all-purpose flour
3 large eggs

Cream
4 large egg yolks
⅓ cup sugar
4 tbsp cornstarch
One pinch kosher salt
1 cup whole milk
1 ½ cup heavy cream, divided
½ tsp almond extract
2 tbsp (¼ stick) unsalted butter

NOTE: ice cream, custard or chocolate mousse can be substituted for cream filling

Glaze
¾ cup heavy cream
½ tsp kosher salt
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (1½ cups)
Toasted sliced almonds for topping

NOTE: Almonds are optional or top with any crushed nuts, sprinkles or other decorations

Instructions
1. Prepare dough: bring the butter, sugar, salt, and water to a simmer over medium heat in a medium saucepan, stirring with a wooden spoon to encourage the butter to melt. As soon as it comes to a boil, add the flour, stirring constantly, until the dough forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the pan, about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture cool for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring the dough occasionally. (You don’t want the eggs to scramble in the next step.)

2. Add eggs, one at a time, stirring vigorously between each addition with a wooden spoon. The dough will break apart and slide around in the pot before it comes back together. Transfer the dough to a piping bag fitted with a round tip.

3. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Pipe the dough into 3-inch lengths about 3 inches apart. (For cream puffs, drop the dough in 2-tablespoon scoops about 3 inches apart on the prepared sheets. )With damp fingertip, flatten any points. Preheat to 450°F and bake until deep golden brown and puffed, rotating the sheets halfway through, 22 to
 26 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack.

4. Prepare the cream: stir together the egg yolks, sugar, and cornstarch in a medium bowl until smooth. Set a fine-mesh sieve over a large bowl.

5. In medium saucepan, bring the milk and 1 cup of the heavy cream to a simmer over medium heat. Add a little bit of the warm milk mixture to the yolk mixture and whisk to combine. Repeat this process a few times until all of the milk mixture has been incorporated into the yolk mixture. Return the mixture to the pan.

6. Cook at medium-low heat, stirring constantly and making sure to get the edges, until the mixture begins to thicken, 2 to 4 minutes. (It’s helpful to have both a spatula and a whisk handy while making the custard. Switch between the two.) Let it come up to a very slow boil and cook for 1 minute more. Strain the custard through the sieve into a clean bowl, and stir in the butter and the almond extract. Press plastic wrap onto the surface of the cream and refrigerate until cooled completely.

7. Prepare the glaze: bring the cream and salt to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate and salt. Let the mixture stand for 1 minute and then whisk to make a smooth sauce.

8. Whip remaining ½ cup cream to soft peaks. Whisk the cooled almond cream to loosen it, then fold in the whipped cream. Transfer the cream to a pastry bag fitted with a fluted tip. Slice the top third off of each éclair and fill with cream. Dip the top of the top half in the glaze and replace it. (For cream puffs, insert the tip of the pastry bag into the bottom of each puff and fill. Dip the filled puffs in the glaze.) Top with almonds to serve.

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Thai Food at Sri Siam Cafe in North Hollywood

Thai Food! 

First time dining at the Sri Siam Cafe, a “Hole in the Wall” Thai Food restaurant in a mini-mall on the corner of Coldwater Cyn and Vanowen in North Hollywood. Everything was stellar! The portions were large and the prices were very reasonable. Each dish was done just right, super tasty and delicious. I give this establishment a big thumbs up!

On The Menu: Crispy rice salad (lettuce wraps), chicken satay with peanut sauce, cucumber salad and toast, yellow curry with duck, shrimp & egg pancakes, crispy spicy trout and a Thai iced tea with no cream.

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Sri Siam Cafe Thai Food

Sri Siam Cafe Thai Food

Crispy Rice Salad (Lettuce Wraps)

Crispy Rice Salad (Lettuce Wraps)*

Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce, Cucumber Salad and Toast

Chicken Satay w/Peanut Sauce, Cucumber Salad & Toast

Yellow Curry with Duck

Yellow Curry with Duck

Shrimp & Egg Pancakes

Shrimp & Egg Pancakes

Crispy Spicy Trout

Crispy Spicy Trout

Sri Siam Cafe – 12843 Vanowen St (at Coldwater Cyn) North Hollywood, CA 91605
(818) 982-6262

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UPDATE Saturday March 26, 2016:

Dinner at Sri Siam Cafe last night was terrific! The food was great, we’ve been back a few times now, and this time I brought a friend.

ON THE MENU: Thai food! Chicken satay with peanut sauce and cucumber salad, crispy fried rice salad, fried calamari and a Thai ice tea (no cream)

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UPDATED Sunday February 19, 2017

We had a very nice dinner party at Sri Siam Cafe on Friday night:

On The Menu: Crispy rice with pork, beef panang and steamed rice, chicken satay with cucumber salad and toast, pad Thai noodles with chicken, green curry chicken, tom kai soup and a Thai iced tea (no cream). There were three other dishes that I didn’t eat and we cancelled two other dishes that they didn’t bring. So much food, so full.

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April 23 – It’s National Cherry Cheesecake Day!

Grandma’s Cherry Cheesecake:

Grandma's Cherry Cheesecake (copyright 2012 JoshWillTravel)

Grandma’s Cherry Cheesecake (copyright 2012 JoshWillTravel)

That’s right, I baked it.

Photos copyright 2012 JoshWillTravel

GRANDMA’S CHERRY CHEESECAKE RECIPE!
READ THE BLOG> https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2015/09/15/grandmas-cherry-cheesecake-recipe/

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