July 13, 2020

How to make espresso at home

Espresso is a black coffee made in a coffee machine or a special coffee machine where hot water at a pressure of 9 bar is passed through the compressed ground beans. The ready beverage must have a thick foam (barista called cream) of uniform golden-nut color, at least 2 mm thick. The taste of the espresso harmonises sweetness, bitterness and light acidity. Shades of taste depend on the coffee beans in the blend, roasting degree and barista skills.
The home of the drink is Italy. Espresso is prepared very quickly and drinks just as quickly. It has several options and serves as the basis for many other coffee beverages.

The rules for making espresso

From other types of coffee classic espresso is characterized by the absence of impurities: milk, cream, alcoholic beverages, spices. Adding these ingredients to the espresso in different proportions, you can get several dozens of other coffee drinks.
Italian coffee connoisseurs believe that the quality of espresso is influenced by 4 factors, which for ease of remembering is called the 4 m rule:
miscela (mixture) - a well-matched blend of beans;
macinadosatore - milling;
maccina is a coffee machine;
mano (hand) - barista skills.

Selection of coffee for espresso

The main advantage of espresso is its full-bodied taste and rich aroma. Arabica has a wonderful aroma, so in espresso mixes, these grains are the most important. But if you boil an espresso from the grains of any one variety, the aroma is much poorer, "one-sided" than the mixture of different varieties of Arabica.
For greater strength, these mixtures are added a bit of Robusta, which is almost twice as rich in caffeine. Robusta has one more peculiarity: it gives a dense foam.

Grind coffee for espresso

It's important to know the rules:
If you grind too fine, the stream of coffee poured into a cup becomes almost black and fine particles can clog the filter of the coffee machine;
coarse grinding makes the espresso liquid and tasteless.
There is a special fine espresso milled: shallower than average, but coarser than fine. However, it is also possible to use medium milled coffee. Experienced barista recommend using slightly coarser milled coffee in wet weather: this powder absorbs moisture more slowly.

Choosing an espresso machine

Each model of coffee maker or coffee machine has individual features that are important to learn.
Signs of a good espresso machine:
Manual espresso machine
Stainless steel holder. No matter how good the plastic holder is, it adds unpleasant chemical odors to the espresso aroma when heated;
The optimum pressure in the espresso chamber is 9 bar, the pump should provide a pressure of 15 bar, coffee machines with lower values of these parameters should not be bought;
Water in the boiler should be heated to a temperature from +87 to +95 ° C. At lower temperature coffee is liquid, not sufficiently extracted, at higher - in the beverage you can feel the shades of burning.

Classic espresso recipe

ground coffee - 7 grams;
water - 30 ml;
sugar - to taste.

The technology of preparation

1. Switch on the coffee machine and wait for the readiness indicator to activate.
2. If the coffee machine is equipped with a built-in grinder, put a tablespoon of beans in it. For the Carob Machine, put 1 measuring container or 2 teaspoons with a small slide of ground coffee into the Carob Machine.
3. Press the coffee in a holder (for carob coffee machine) with a tempera.
4. Place the holder in the coffee machine.
5. Place a clean heated cup in the drip tray. The preparation time is 25-30 seconds.
6. Add sugar to taste.

Espresso-based drinks

The method of preparation of espresso options is the same as the main recipe. Adding a teaspoon or a 5-gram sugar sticker increases the calorie value of coffee by 19.35 kcal.
Doppio (double espresso): 14 g ground coffee, 60 ml of water, preparation time 25-30 seconds. Caloric value - 4.5 kcal.
Tripplo (triple espresso): 21 g of ground coffee, 90 ml of water, preparation time - 25-30 seconds. Caloric value - 6.75 kcal.
Lungo: 7 g ground coffee, 50-60 ml of water, preparation time - 25-30 seconds. The drink contains more caffeine than classic espresso. Caloric value - 2.25 kcal.
Ristretto: 7 g of ground coffee, 15-20 ml of water, preparation time - 15-20 seconds. The drink contains less caffeine than classic espresso. Caloric value - 2.25 kcal.
Coretto: Add a few drops of grappa to a standard espresso. Sometimes grappa is replaced by Irish whisky, but this is not considered to be quite right.
Romano: Add 5 ml of freshly squeezed lemon juice to the standard espresso portion. Foam is sprinkled with a pinch of lemon peel.
Americano: mix the standard espresso portion with 60 - 90 ml of boiling water. Sometimes the boiling water is served separately so that the visitor can adjust the strength of the drink himself.
Espresso and cognac: add 1 - 2 teaspoons of cognac to a standard portion of espresso.

June 30, 2020

Cute 4th of July Wreath

What's more American than baseball?
I am I am I am...

Do you remember that song? Maybe that ages me haha.
This song is what inspired me to add a baseball theme to my 4th of July wreath. Check it out!

This wreath was so fun and easy to make!

I would love to have you subscribe to my blog and youtube channel!
If you have made a 4th of July wreath please share it in the comments below. I would love to see it!

May 05, 2020

Cactus Cake for Cinco De Mayo

I don't have any pictures as I was making this but I will share the recipe I used. It was a red velvet cake inside with butter cream frosting. The green is fondant. This was a very big cake. It was about 24" tall.

I started by making three 9x13" cakes. After they were cooled I started to freehand cut out and piece together what I thought looked like a cactus. I then frosted it and added on another layer. I used a lot of frosting to glue it all together. I then smoothed the frosting out as best as I could. 

The night before I made two batches of fondant and colored it with green gel coloring. I then rolled out my fondant. This was the most difficult part because the cake was so large. I have never had to work with this big of an area with fondant. My son actually had to help put the fondant on this one. After the fondant was on I took a small round ball tool and made the lines in running down the cactus.

Next I took sunburst candies and rolled them out and cut them in the shape of flowers. I use the candies when I need different colors and I only need a small amount. The stickers are toothpicks broken in half and stuck all over. I would like to lie and say that I made the lizard but it is a small plastic one that I purchased.:)

The Red Velvet Cake recipe I love can be found HERE 

Classic Buttercream icing-yield 6 cups

*2 cups butter or solid white veatable shortening
* 2 teaspoons vanilla (use clear vanilla to get a pure white icing)
*4 tablespoons milk or water
*2 pounds pure cane confecioner suger (thats around 8 cups)
*2 tablespoons meringue powder (this is sold at ac more or michles craft stores, and other specialty baking stores)

Directions- On medium speed, cream shortening, vanilla, and water/milk. Add half of dry ingredients, mix a little, add other half. This will create a stiff icing. If it is too stiff, add another tablespoon or two of water/milk

Taco (soup) Tuesday in a Slow Cooker

This week I saw at least three people share their 
Taco Soup recipes. So of course I had to make some and 
share my favorite recipe with you!

Whats amazing about this is, everyone loves it, 
it is so easy to make and of course delicious!

*Note - I doubled the recipe and put it in an extra large crock pot,
  as you will notice in my pictures.


1 lb extra lean ground beef
1 onion, chopped (I use chopped frozen onions)
1 (16 oz) can chili beans, with liquid

April 03, 2020

Too funny not to share with my followers! 😂

My husband is not a real big Facebook person and only follows a couple family members so I knew he had not seen this prank yet. He was way too nice about it, I would have been so ticked!!! 😡
 I laughed till it hurt! 😂😂😂🤣  And when he sniffs his fingers at the end. 🤣

March 02, 2020

January 18, 2020

Spray The B!#ch Away - Aromatherapy Spray

I originally bought this for a gag gift for a friend.
It came in a package for two so I decided to try it out.

What did I find out?
It absolutely worked!
It made me feel really relaxed and calm.

Spray the B!#ch Away

Spray the B!#h Away is a multi-purpose aromatherapy spray/perfume designed to help you relax, as well as helping you deal with the emotions your swear aren't yours. Use it as a perfume, linen spray, room spray, or just spray it into your immediate surroundings to breathe in the benefits.
This is an essential oil spray, and contains no harmful chemicals, artificial fragrances, or preservatives. Because of this, the scent is light and not overpowering.
It also makes a great gag gift.
Click HERE to try it for yourself or a friend. 
If you try it please let me know what you think!

December 10, 2019

You Gotta See This Blender

I have only used this blender once 
and I already love it.

This is the new K400 Kitchen Aid Blender

I made a yummy shake in my new blender.
Take a look...

Blend tough ingredients

With the sturdy, die cast metal base and unique asymmetric blade that blends at four distinct angles to pull contents into the blade. Working with the 1.5 Peak HP motor*, the blade creates a powerful blending vortex to power through the toughest ingredients.*Laboratory measurement of peak horsepower output of motor.

3-Part Blending System
Easily blends even the toughest ingredients, from kale to almonds and more, with a powerful vortex created by the ribbed jar design, unique asymmetric blade that blends at four distinct angles, and Intelli-Speed® Motor Control, which senses contents and maintains the optimal speed to power through all ingredients.

Blend your best-tasting creations
With 3 Preset Recipe Programs: Ice Crush, Icy Drinks, and Smoothie. Or, control the taste and texture to fit your personal preference with the 5-speed variable speed dial.

November 05, 2019

Your Guilty Pleasure Doesn't Need To Make You Feel Guilty

Have you heard of SWOON?
If not, let me share.

When it's cold outside and especially over
the holidays, I love to have Hot Chocolate!
Only thing is, I always feel guilty when
I indulge in this sweet drink. 

Then I saw this...

October 30, 2019

Fun Halloween Drink

I have seen several of these done and 
so I decided to do one myself 
with my grand kids!

🎃 Grenadine Syrup
🎃 Maraschino Cherries
🎃 Lime
🎃 Sprite
 Glass jars and syringes were purchased on Amazon

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