9.22.2011

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Lattes & Questions

This post is going to be seriously awesome. Why? Well, it delivers some food for thought, to be taken with...coffee...AND it tells you exactly how to make aforementioned delicious...COFFEE.

Are you excited? You should be!
(I am.)

You know how I love Starbucks. I'm also pretty sure you know how I love Starbucks' seasonal beverage, the infamous pumpkin spice latte. Actually, I kind of wonder how the world keeps spinning when it's not in season - it must simply spin in anticipation of the season when it comes back. Either way, as you can see, my insatiable love makes the 25 minute drive and $5+ needed to acquire one quite disheartening.

So, I've been messing around, trying to make my own version at home, and I found a recipe for one that (while not quite the same) satisfies the craving quite well. Even better, it starts with making a syrup that you can just stick in the fridge, ready to break out whenever autumn whispers tempting in your ear, "pumpkin spice latteeeee..."







I might make some adjustments next time I make it - see if I can make it taste more like the original. It's hard to get that rich, delicious pumpkin flavor using real pumpkin. But, using real pumpkin adds charm, don't you think?



Pumpkin Spice Latte Syrup
{source}

1/3 C. Pumpkin Puree
1 C. Sugar
1 1/4 C. Water
1 t. Vanilla
1 t. Cinnamon
1/2 t. Nutmeg
1/4 t. Cloves
1/4 t. Ginger

Start by placing all ingredients in a sauce pan on medium high heat. Stir ingredients and bring to a boil. Stirring every few minutes, let the mixture boil at a lower temperature for 10-15 minutes, until it becomes slightly thick and sticky.

Remove pan from heat, and let cool. To store, refrigerate in an airtight container.

To make your pumpkin spice latte...

Heat up a couple of tablespoons (more or less) of pumpkin spice syrup with the milk for your latte (a true latte is about half steamed milk, half espresso). Pour milk & pumpkin syrup mixture into a mug, and pour your espresso shots (or whatever form of coffee you like to use) into the milk and stir it. Top with whipped cream (if desired - I didn't have any, but it would be delicious), and a sprinkle of cinnamon & nutmeg.

Enjoy!

If I find a way to make it better, I'll update this recipe later to include the changes. As is, you should still try it, because it is delicious in its own special way!

"Okay, question..."

My family always jokes that I start way too many conversations that way. Actually, it's usually not followed by an actual question, but rather a string of bold and very much unproven statements, treated as absolute fact. I'm not sure why I do that, but either way...that's not what I'm here to talk about.

I want to know what you people think about...


For fear of making this post ridiculously long, I won't go into too much detail here - I want you guys to answer a few questions for me, and we'll continue this conversation in another post after I hear from you all.

{FIRST}Comments
How do you comment? Do you comment on every post you read? If not, what type of content are you most likely to comment on?

I've found that the percentage of readers that comment consistently has been rapidly going down, across the web, over the past several months. It could be because the blogosphere is simply evolving into less of a community activity, and more of an author-powered source of entertainment... or it could be that bloggers are simply pooping out. Ha! What do you think?

{SECOND}Effort
What do you do to grow your blog? What do you consider a fair way to gain readers? How much effort is too much, & how much is not enough?

I think we can all agree that feeling like we're being pulled away from our own lives, just to keep up with the content a blogger is putting out is not a good thing, in general. Still, there's the aspect of dependability that says we need to be fairly consistent in our posting - after all, if the point of blogging is to offer something to our readers, then we should keep that focus when we consider the effort we put forth. Where do we reach that balance?

{THIRD}Trends
What do you think about blogging trends? Are they really valuable to gaining more long-term readers?

All trends have to start somewhere, and when it comes to blogging - an effusion of original souls creating original material - I can't help but wonder if some of these trends are really productive. Nice design, creative wording & photo heavy blogs... all trending, but they can be personalized. But then there are trends like vintage photos, fashion photography, specific aesthetic models for wording...unfortunately, people who follow these trends are diverting attention from the pioneers of these styles of blogging. It's a good way to get followers quickly, but will they last?

Let me know your thoughts, and we'll continue this conversation in a few days.

Happy Thursday, Loves!