Turmeric Lattes (Golden Milk Lattes): 3 Ways

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Alright, confession time.  I pronounce (some) words strangely.  These days, its only really noticeable in my emphasis on “tt” when it shows up in the middle of words.  Kitten.  Mitten.  Button…  But I also said “pint” with a short ‘i’ sound for a little while and went through a phase with too much emphasis on the ‘w’s in words like sword and dwarf.  My family will still tease me about it, occasionally.  I was a kid who read A LOT (like, a chapter book a day… rereading Harry Potter books 1-3 over 30 times during the year before Goblet of Fire was published…yeah…)  So I had a fairly large collection of words that I was most familiar with seeing.  So, I tended to pronounce things as the y looked.  I mean, obviously there are two T’s for a reason, am I right?

3-latte-top

Anyways, I’ve noticed now that I am an adult, I’ve picked up a bad habit of dropping or even changing letters.  I think it, again, comes from reading the words so often (on blogs, etc), except that I am a little too lazy and just presume a word instead of actually paying attention.  So here’s the actual confession:  Even though I have heard it said and I know that the “R” is there…I say too-meric.  I also say xanthUM gum, and in my earlier recipes, have often written in with an M instead of an N.  That one was more surprising when I realized my mistake.  I’ve been aware of my turmeric error forever, but I just can’t seem to shake my bad pronunciation.

Have you tried turmeric lattes (also known as “golden milk” lattes) yet?

chai-tur-concentrate

They sounded super comforting when I first heard about them and (no surprise to my spice-loving self) I love them!  This is perhaps why I now have a little under a pound of fresh turmeric root in my freezer.  That’s another story.  But the short version is that it came in my produce box.  And my sister also got some and asked me what I did with it.  So, I came up with a few different versions of a turmeric latte to share with you today!  Plus, it gave me an excuse to make designs with spices on my marble cutting board.  Hello, beautiful!

chai-tea-spices

The Quick Way (Turmeric Latte)-Or when you just have dried, powdered turmeric

  • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • hefty pinch ground black pepper
  • 1-2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp./a splash of vanilla extract(optional)
  • 1 c. milk*

*dairy or non-dairy–I love almond milk in these lattes

Heat the milk in the microwave.  In ours, it takes about 2 minutes to get piping hot, but not scalded.  While the milk is heating, add all spices, honey, and vanilla extract, if using, to your coffee mug.  Mix well to form a paste.  Add a splash of hot milk and stir until the paste is incorporated into the liquid.  Add remaining milk, give it all a stir, and enjoy!

The Slow Way (Turmeric Tea Concentrate)Or when you have fresh/frozen turmeric root

  • 4 Tbsp. turmeric root, grated
  • 1/2 inch slice of ginger root, split into a few pieces
  • 3 c. water
  • hefty pinch ground black pepper
  • 1-2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp./a splash of vanilla extract (optional)
  • milk of choice

Add grated turmeric root and ginger slices to a small pot with the water.  Bring to a boil, turn off heat and allow to steep until water cools (at least 1 hour).  If possible, I usually transfer it all to a jar, cover, and let it steep overnight.  Strain the water from the roots and keep the concentrate in the fridge for up to two weeks.  When ready to serve, heat equal parts turmeric tea and milk of choice.  In coffee mug, mix honey, vanilla extract, if using, and ground pepper.  Add the milk mixture, stir thoroughly, and enjoy!

The Twist (Turmeric Chai Tea Concentrate)–Or when you don’t want a ton of turmeric

  • 2-3 Tbsp turmeric root, grated*
  • 3/4 inch of ginger root, sliced
  • 5 whole cardamom pods
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/4 tsp. fennel seeds
  • 3 whole allspice
  • hefty pinch of freshly ground nutmeg (or 1/4 tsp. ground)
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper (or a few whole peppercorns)
  • 4 black tea bags (regular or decaf, depending on when you favor your lattes)
  • 3 c. water
  • 1-2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp./a splash of vanilla extract (optional)
  • milk of choice

*or 1-2 tsp ground, dried turmeric

Add grated turmeric root, ginger slices, and all spices (whole or ground) to a small pot with the water.  Bring to a boil, turn off heat and allow to steep until water cools (at least 1 hour).  If possible, I usually transfer it all to a jar, cover, and let it steep overnight.  Strain the water from the spices and keep the concentrate in the fridge for up to two weeks.  When ready to serve, heat equal parts turmeric tea and milk of choice (usually 1/2 cup of each).  In coffee mug, mix honey and vanilla extract, if using.  Add the milk mixture, stir thoroughly, and enjoy!


Sangria Starter Kit: Bridal Shower or Hostess Gift

sangria kit title

This week has been packed with prep work: planning, cooking, and freezing lunches to carry M and I through camp, and finalizing registrations, schedules, and musical numbers, and learning choreography at work.  Punc has come in to the office almost every day as we squeeze in as much time with her as possible.  Luckily, our roommates’ work schedules are fairly light over the summer, so she will spend a lot of time with people in spite of M’s and my long days.  She’ll also get at least one trip to Grandma’s house to play with the other dogs for a few days.  Luckily, with such diligence during the week, I’ve been able to keep these final weekends mostly clear for some fun before camp begins.  Tomorrow, M and I will probably go out to a local wine festival after a trip to the Farmer’s Market, and on Sunday I plan to do a little more prep cooking and some final cleaning, but should still be pretty relaxing.

sangria kit recipes

Last weekend, M was wrapped up in work, but I was able to spend Saturday going up to see E and watch roller derby and also to attend a bridal shower for A, one of my close friends from high school.  A was one of the first people I met at HHS, several weeks before the start of freshman year during color guard camp.  She and I can spend months apart, and pick right up where we left off whenever we do get together.  Her fiancé actually went to high school with M (out of my close friends-group, 3 of us have ended up with RHS boys, to our amusement).  I am exceedingly excited for their wedding in the fall, where there reception will be on A’s fiancé’s boat (yes, he is a captain).  It should be very fun, indeed.  Intentionally or not, I’ve made all of A’s engagement milestones–we happened to get the old crowd together for David’s birthday dinner just a few days after A’s fiancé proposed, and were among the first to marvel at the ring.  I also made a mad dash, defying several traffic jams, to see her pick out the dress.  And I’ve been avidly following her wedding boards on Pinterest.  Needless to say, I was so happy to make it to her shower and catch up with old friends between bridal bingo and toilet-paper-dress competitions (I partnered up with A’s niece-to-be and we ran a strong game, let me tell you.  Competition beware!)

sangria kit top

I wanted to do something fun for A’s bridal shower gift.  While her ModCloth wedding registry was full of amazing items–can we pause and  appreciate that ModCloth does wedding registries?!  I had no idea!–I had been ruminating over some kind of “kit”.  I turned to Pinterest, and discovered all sorts of baking kits and kitchen towel cakes.  But, I knew A was living in a fairly-furnished house (she probably had oven mitts), and I knew that, at this point in time, she probably did not want 27 kitchen towels.  Plus, I wanted a little more pizzazz.  She did have a few pitchers on her registries, and while I was perusing the kitchen items in the store, I came up with an idea: A Sangria Starter Kit.  A pitcher, a nice big spoon, a citrus juicer, some wine charms, a bottle of wine, and other fun accouterments.  Perfect!

I found the largest pitcher that I could, but it still took a little bit of wheedling and careful adjustments to get most of the kit to fit inside of the pitcher.

sangra kit materials

In addition to the pitcher, I picked up a really nice wooden spoon, a nice ceramic citrus juicer/reamer, the most adorable kitchen towel, a bottle of red with a cute label, and a wine stopper with removable wine-glass-markers.  I also found a tiny, fun lantern and citronella tea lights.  Since sangria makes me think of outside patios, decks, balconies, etc, I decided to add those in, too.  I also wrote up three recipe cards for sangria: a red sangria, a white sangria, and an unusual sangria–in this case a cucumber-based batch that sounded super refreshing.

sangria kit close up

To start, I removed the tea lights from their packaging and filled up the lantern.  Then I started seeing how I could fit the items together inside the pitcher.  I wanted to keep the wine stopper-marker combo in its packaging for the directions, but I would have had a bit more room if I had removed that packaging as well.  Ultimately, I found that if I placed the wine stopper box and the juicer in the pitcher, I could tilt the pitcher and/or use the spoon to push them against the side while I slid the wine bottle inside the pitcher. The bottle does take up a fair amount of space within the bowl of the pitcher.  Then I could wedge the towel in to cushion the bottle and keep everything stable.  Finally, the spoon could just fit in the spout of the pitcher.  I tied the recipes around the outside.  I thought about trying to tie the lantern as well, but everything was more stable with it staying separate.  I also didn’t want anything to catch while she was trying to remove  the wrapping.

sangria kit together

All in all, I was quite happy with this little kit.  The biggest advice I can offer is to find the largest pitcher possible: more room to pack up the kit, and, ultimately, more sangria.  I also liked that I could pass on handwritten recipes.  This would also make a very cute hostess gift.  It could easily be modified into a margarita kit: replace the wine with margarita mix (and tequila, if you can fit both bottles) and the wine stopper with a package of flavored salt or sugar for rimming the glasses.

sangria kit back view

Sangria Starter Kit

  • large pitcher
  • bottle of wine
  • citrus juicer/reamer
  • wine stopper
  • wine glass charms/markers
  • wooden spoon
  • kitchen towel(s)
  • lantern (optional)
  • candles (optional)
  • recipe cards
  • twine

Assemble as many items into pitcher.  Secure remaining items, or package together.  Write sangria recipes on cards and secure around pitcher.  Let the party begin!