I love fancy coffee shops. You have one in your town, right?
If you have one nearby, you’ll know that they usually have boys wearing suspenders and black-rimmed glasses working behind the counter. These boys or girls use the best filtered tap water they can find, they can explain the differences of roasts until you’re sleepy and usually pride themselves on making Vanilla Lattes the real way. No gross chemically syrups.
Instead they make their own vanilla syrup and charge you $6 for a vanilla latte. Totally worth it, in my opinion. I love seeing the little speckles of vanilla bean floating around in my coffee. I get excited.
I reserve $6 vanilla lattes for Saturday mornings. It’s my big splurge. But now that I figured out how to make my own, we can all have them seven days a week.
One vanilla bean+one cup of sugar+one cup of water=vanilla syrup that will last you a very long time. Keep it in the fridge for up to a month.
Put it in your tea. Put it in your coffee. Or make vanilla lattes all day long.
You don’t need a fancy espresso maker to make a latte. Just get one of these old-school Italian stovetop espresso makers. My parents gave me this one and I think it’s the cutest thing on the planet.
Then get a milk frother. I searched the internetz for a while until I decided on this one. Fifteen bucks at Sur La Table and I’ll have lattes and cappucinos for days. Well worth the investment.
By the way, do you have a food blog? Did you know you can get an “industry” discount there if you show them your blog and fill out a form. 15% off anything in the store. Kinda neato, right? Here’s a link to the Sur La Table discount deets!
Then just pour a shot of espresso in a mug, add a few teaspoons of the vanilla syrup, add the milk and top it off with some froth. Cute, easy, cute, easy, cute.
Fancy Vanilla Latte
Vanilla Syrup recipe from Chow
Yields 1 vanilla latte
1 vanilla bean
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of water
3/4 cup of milk (I used non-fat)
Place vanilla bean and seeds, sugar, and water in a small saucepan with a tightfitting lid. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Once the mixture boils, reduce the heat to low and simmer, swirling the pan occasionally, for 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from heat, cover, and let sit for at least 1 hour at room temperature. Discard the vanilla bean and refrigerate the syrup in a covered container for up to 1 month.
Fill the bottom half of your Italian espresso maker with water. Pack the filter tightly with espresso. Place over medium heat until all of the water transfers to the top half.
Heat up milk until warm and transfer to a stainless steel container. Stick the frother in the milk and pulse until you have your desired amount of froth.
Pour in a mug, add two tablespoons of vanilla syrup (or more if you like it sweeter). Add the warmed milk over the espresso and top with froth.