Wildflower Honey Latte

Summer may be ending, but that doesn’t mean the flavors of the season need to leave us. You can still cling onto warm evenings catching glimpses of butterflies dancing in the trees. All it takes is a bit of imagination and the sweet taste of wildflower honey.

A local cafe crafted an array of seasonal summertime drinks, one of which was a wildflower honey latte. It quickly became my go-to summer drink, but now that the leaves are changing color, they have switched up their drink menu. My heart sank the day I could no longer order this latte, so I set out to recreate it at home.

It’s a simple drink to make, but with the addition of wildflower honey the latte feels like an indulgence. Therefore, it’s the perfect way to hang onto summer even when the temps are falling outside.

Wildflower Honey Latte

Ingredients:

  • 2 shots strong coffee or espresso
  • 1/2 C. steamed milk
  • 1.5 Tbs. wildflower honey

Directions:

  • Add the wildflower honey into a coffee mug
  • Pour the coffee on top of the honey and stir until combined
  • Top with the steamed milk and enjoy

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Month in Review: August 2019

August slipped by in a blur of happy moments. Ian and I celebrated five years of marriage, attended local summer events, and gathered together with my family at Devils Lake to wish my brother and sister a happy birthday. It was a month full to the brim with outings, but we loved every moment of the chaos.

Last summer Ian and I attended The Iron Horse hotel’s anniversary party and won a free night stay. We decided there was no better time to use this voucher than on our five year anniversary.  While the hotel is only 15 minutes from our home, there was an element of excitement to stay downtown for the night. We took advantage of the hotel’s walking distance to the Third Ward’s moon festival and listened to jazz under the stars.

To keep our anniversary celebrations going, we booked a sunset cruise on Lake Michigan. I had yet to go beyond the breakwater, so I was anxious to see the city’s skyline from the lake. The view did not disappoint! I’m already looking forward to booking another trip.

In true summer fashion, August was sprinkled with weeknight excursions to local ice cream shops. We made a point to try all of the little independent stands in our neighborhood, which resulted in lively debates on which ones are our favorites.

To celebrate my brother and sister’s birthdays (both in August), the family planned an afternoon at Devil’s Lake. We grilled out, splashed around in the water, and rented a paddle boat. Many laughs were shared as we took in the beautiful views around us.

We ended the month being serenaded at the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum. With live music wafting through the grounds, we felt like we had been transported to a Mediterranean estate. Watching the sun set from the terrace was a beautiful sight and it felt like the perfect way to say farewell to August.

To catch a glimpse inside our daily life in August, watch the video below!

Tasting History: Baked Alaska Cupcakes (1860s)

Conflicting tales are a common theme in history. Without thorough documentation, bits and pieces of information are strung together to form a general idea of the past. In the case of the Baked Alaska, historical chatter center around its popularization versus its creation. Originally called an omelette surprise in Norway, a New York chef popularized the Baked Alaska in 1867 to celebrate the acquisition of Alaska.

It’s clear the concept of the Baked Alaska wasn’t groundbreaking since cookbooks, such as The Philadelphia Housewife, printed recipes for baked meringue ice cream desserts as early as 1855. However, it wasn’t until 1867 that homemakers began attempting this technically difficult dessert to delight dinner guests.

While a traditional Baked Alaska is prepared as a cake, I took a modern approach to this vintage recipe and made them into cupcakes. A key to success with this recipe is to keep the ice cream as cold as possible and serve them immediately after you caramelize the meringue. This is not a make-ahead dessert as it needs to be prepared and served quickly. Therefore, these cupcakes are better suited for an intimate dinner party rather than a large-scale gathering.

Baked Alaska Cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • White Cake Mix
  • Strawberry Ice Cream
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla
  • 2/3 C. sugar

Directions:

  • Preheat over to 350˙
  • Prepare the white cake mix according to box instructions.
  • Line muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  • Fill each muffin tin 1/3 full.
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes.
  • Let cupcakes cool.
  • Scoop 2 heaping tablespoons of ice cream on top of the cupcakes.
  • Cover the cupcakes and place in the freezer for at least 2 hours.
  • Heat the oven to 450˙ and prepare the meringue by beating the egg whites, cream of tartar, and vanilla with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add in the sugar until stiff peaks form.
  • Spoon the meringue mixture over the cupcakes and bake for 2-3 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned. Serve the cupcakes immediately.