Of course, your superb coffee must be accompanied by something that might include a wedge of your sinfully rich cheesecake, or a fresh, just from the oven cherry pie. Even doughnuts are a great "come together" with coffee.
If you really want to get elegant, try demitasse and Petits Four - sure fire elegance in a tiny way. You can serve your coffee any time of day. In the morning delight your uests with a French flair such as Cafe-au-lait. Just pass around some freshly baked sweet rolls, croissants, or hot brioche. But what about evening coffee? Cocoa Coffee Brazilian or smooth, flavorful Vanilla Cream are suitable to everyone's taste buds. You can also try the more exotic flavors, such as Hawaiian or Spiced Rum.
In hot weather try serving iced coffee or a layered coffee Cooler. If you don't want to server flavored coffee, try regular coffee with flavored creamers in a variety of flavors for guests to pick and choose. A really elegant touch is serving flavored "spoons." These special spoons are your ordinary spoons with flavored chocolates on the bowl part of the spoon. When your guests stir their coffee, they are adding a subtle touch of flavor, such as mint, or caramel. They are easy to make and are a wonderful surprise for your guests. Just melt your favorite chocolate, even white chocolate. Dip your spoons into the melted chocolate, cool on waxed paper, and server with your coffee. Now, that entertaining!
Here are a few recipes for adding a touch of "different" when you serve coffee.
Make your usual coffee, but double strength. Pour 3/4 cup of hot, steaming coffee over your ice cubes. Add additional ice cubes if desired. Serve with confectioner's sugar and whipped cream. Try adding a little maple syrup to your whipped topping. You can dust with cinnamon, if you like. Now this is almost as good as an ice cream sundae.
3/4 cup chocolate syrup, such as Hershey's
1 quart of plain vanilla ice cream, not ice milk
1-1/2 cups milk
1 tbs. of your favorite instant coffee
Chill your glasses in a freezer for about 15 mins. Spoon 3 tbs. chocolate syrup into each glass. Add some ice cream that is slightly softened. Quickly blend in the coffee crystals into warm milk. Do not boil the milk but it must be sufficiently warm to mix well with the instant coffee. Let this mixture cool. Pour your milk mixture over the ice cream and use shaved chocolate sprinkles to add extra flavor.
Serve with a straw and a dollop of whipped cream.
Measure 3 tbs. instant coffee, or to taste, into your coffee server. Add 2 cups boiling hot water. Serve your coffee in tiny cups with cream and sugar on the side.
(Fruit flavor) Add 1 tsp. orange juice for each cup of coffee in your server. Or if you are not sure your guests prefer a fruit flavor, pass twists of orange rind.
1 cup milk
1 cup light cream
3 tbs. instant coffee
2 cups boiling water
Warm the milk and cream over low heat until hot - but never to boiling. Beat with an electric mixer until foamy and pour immediately into a warmed pitcher. Dissolve the instant coffee in the boiling water. Pour into a separate pitcher.
When serving, fill cups from both pitchers at the same time. This joins the two together to blend to just the right consistency.
Serve and enjoy.
Place two crushed cardamom seeds in the bottom of each coffee cup. Fill with hot coffee, a little on the strong side.
This gives your coffee a wonderfully warming spicy aroma.
When you invite guests over for coffee, they are expecting not only a great cup of coffee and a special something to go with it, but warm hospitality and friendly conversation. So get together with friends and family and invite them to "come over for coffee" and give them something they don't expect by using any of the special coffees above.
Drink up and enjoy!
©Arleen M. Kaptur 2002