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Posts Tagged ‘Duran Coffee’

Make Your Own Vanilla Coffee Liqueur

Written on October 24th, 2009 by 2 shouts

vanillacoffeeThe holidays are coming and it’s time to get those hand-made liqueurs in a cool, dark place to age.  Coffee is the main crop in Boquete and coffee has a soft, warm side when it’s combined with spirits.  Coffee liqueurs are at the top of my list of easy-to-make and enthusiastically received homemade cordials.

Each holiday season I bring out the beautiful bottles collected during the year, clean them up and fill them with delectable liqueurs for giving and for sipping on these cool evenings in Boquete.

For my Vanilla Coffee Liqueur, I decided to buy bottles smaller than usual.  The ones I like best are made in Panama by Varela Hnos. - Herrerano Seco 250 ml bottle, they are round in shape, cost less than empty bottles and 1/3 the regular size bottle; it’s the one with the white label pictured above.  The seco can be transferred to other bottles or better yet, we can make some delicious drinks using seco during the next few weeks.  I will not use seco to make my liqueur, however.  All the other ingredients in the picture go into this luscious liqueur.

Most of the ingredients you probably already have in your cupboard.  It’s easy to make strong coffee using your microwave.

A simple syrup only takes a  couple minutes to make.  We are able to get McCormick pure vanilla extract in Boquete, as well as Stolichnaya vodka and Fundador brandy.  Glycerin is available at our local drugstore.  My liqueur is made now and aging until the holidays.

For the best liqueur, I combine the ingredients when everything has cooled, that way the alcohol doesn’t evaporate.  There may be some sediment at the bottom of the bottle after your liqueur has aged, it’s easy to strain it into “gift” bottles.

Here’s my exact recipe:

2 1/2 cups water (1 1/2 cup for coffee and 1 cup for syrup)
3 tablespoons instant coffee crystals (I used Boquete’s Duran Coffee)
3 cups sugar
5 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups 80-proof vodka
1 cup brandy
1 teaspoon glycerin (available at drugstore, but is optional)

Make a strong cup of coffee using 1 1/2 cup water and coffee.  Set aside to cool.  Make a simple syrup by bringing 1 cup water and sugar to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.  When clear, remove from heat and let stand until cool.  Pour all ingredients into a 2-quart container, cover and let stand in a cool, dark place for at least 1 month.  Pour into pretty bottles, tie with a festive bow and give as gifts.  In about a month, I’ll show you my completed bottles of Vanilla Coffee Liqueur and tell you who received them in their stockings!

For Best Flavor - Head to Sabroson

Written on October 20th, 2009 by no shouts




This was an ordinary day for us, we awoke early and decided to head to David for a day of shopping. I was looking for a couple of whisks, the ones like Lauretta used in the cooking class she presented in my kitchen on Thursday.sabrosonfolks2

I was missing a big stainless steel bowl and big whisk for her class, and I was determined to find them in David.

We stopped at our favorite breakfast restaurant in Boquete, Sabroson, located on the main street near the church.

We were not disappointed, the place was swarming with locals, everyone getting their morning meal; scrambled eggs, toasted chorizo, hojaldres, local country cheese, fresh orange juice and coffee.  Sabroson offers one of Boquete’s favorite coffees, Duran, prepared any way you’d like.  I like mine con leche and they always put a couple packets of sugar on the side.  Refills are not free, but the flavor is so intense you may not want more than one cup.sabroson2

The atmosphere is moving, everyone seems to have their own plan for the day, children are laughing and the mood is upbeat. The food is well prepared, hot, tasty and very reasonable.

I have my plan also, and it’s getting to David to look for my whisks, what a lovely way to start my day!

Anne’s “Super-dooper” Pie Crust

Written on October 4th, 2009 by no shouts

Anne's Pie CrustOne of life’s greatest pleasures is the aroma and taste of a big, luscious piece of Mom’s warm, homemade pie, together with a cup of fine robust coffee from Boquete.  During our busy days, why don’t we bake more pies? Maybe it’s because the crust seems so difficult to make. Maybe we think it will turn out tough or soggy, or we think it won’t be able to roll out easily.

For me, it was all of the above and it just took too much time - until David’s sister Anne brought forth her “easy as pie”, “never-fail”, “super-dooper” pie crust recipe that includes an egg and vinegar, yes vinegar! Here it is:
Wisk 4 cups flour, 1T sugar and 2t salt in a large bowl.
Add 1 3/4 cup vegetable shortening with a fork
Beat 1 T vinegar, 1 large egg and 1/2 cup water in a small bowl.
Combine with a fork and divide into 4 portions, shape each portion into a round patty, wrap separately in ClingWrap and freeze the patties.

The fun part of making a pie is putting it all together and with Anne’s recipe it actually becomes a pleasure. First, I take out a patty from my freezer and while it’s thawing, I decide what kind of pie to make by visiting my favorite foodie sites or researching my specialty cookbooks. A trick I learned from Rachel Ray is to always have ingredients on hand to make my favorite dishes, so I have lots of pie filling possibilities in my pantry.

Any time you feel like making one of Mom’s tasty homemade pies, defrost a patty, roll it out between two pieces of waxed paper, transfer the crust to a pie plate, fill it up with your favorite pie filling and bake. Pecan, pumpkin and spinach quiche are my most frequent choices.

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