Do you know what I like less than I like riding in car with the windows down and my hair flying into my lip-gloss? My white laundry going silver. Possibly it is something to do with our water. Possibly it's a mysterious, evil creature who adds something to the laundry when I'm not looking. Possibly it is none of these things and everyone's white laundry goes gray at some point in its miserable little life. Moving on to the real subject of this post, I introduce you to burnt honey.
Have you ever had a burnt honey latte? The first time I tasted one was at Commune, a brunch/lunch restaurant in Virginia Beach. I took a sip from my sister's mug and raved about the flavor afterward over my fig & honey croissant. Think past the saccharine, over-sugared Starbucks “Carmalized Honey Latte” to something more refined. Something less “in your face with the cotton candy rainbows” and more reserved. Think twice-distilled autumn sunlight. That's what burnt honey is like. Not too sweet with a strong undertow of dark coffee. After my recent Instagram-documented encounter with a “golden milk latte”, the burnt honey craving was stronger than ever. This weekend, in a fit of over-confidence, I tried my hand at a replication. The results were so pleasing, despite the fact that I cooked some of the honey to the hard-ball stage and therefore have a solid block of amber stuck in a mug on my counter-top. Still working on how to get that out. Since I'm not a pumpkin-spice latte kind of girl, I foresee a whole lot of burnt honey in my fall. Enjoy!
Burnt Honey Lattes For Four
1 pot of good coffee, made strong in a French Press
1 cup whole milk, frothed by hand
½ cup “burnt” honey (recipe to follow)
- First, burn your honey. Pour ½ cup honey into a small saucepan and over medium heat, stir constantly till it reaches the “soft ball” stage of cooking. The color will have darkened and the honey will have begun to “smoke.” Careful you don't cook it too long, as you'll end up with hard honey candy instead of a syrup! Transfer to jar for safe-keeping and reheat the saucepan with water on the stove-top to avoid crystallization.
- After brewing your coffee (I recommend a French press, though strong coffee of any variety, even espresso, would work just as well), it is time to froth the milk. In a saucepan on medium heat, heat the milk, whisking briskly. As the milk heats, intensify your whipping until it is hot and frothy.
- Assemble lattes by dissolving a good dollop of burnt honey in a mug ½ full of hot coffee. Spoon foamy milk over the coffee, saving the frothiest for the final topping. Top with froth and drizzle with additional burnt honey.