QUICK DRIP RECIPES
Chocolate Macadamia Nut Milano Hot Coffee
Vanilla Butter Pecan Hot Coffee
Flavored Coffee Beans & Coffee Flavoring Syrups
Many a coffee aficionado would turn up their nose at the thought of adding flavorings to their beloved black beverage. But, if you're not an aficionado, and you didn't pay exorbitant amounts of money for single-estate specialty coffee beans, then why not indulge in trying some of the fine coffee flavoring syrups, or flavored coffee beans available today? To help you make the most of coffee flavorings, here is a summary of the things you should know before buying. **Coffee Flavoring Syrups** Generally sweet, and always indulgent, coffee flavorings such as vanilla, hazelnut or amoretto can be found bottled in the form of coffee syrups. Added after the coffee is brewed, the advantage of using these syrups over using pre-flavored coffee beans is that your grinding and brewing equipment does not become tainted by flavor extracts on the beans. About the only rule when using syrups to make flavored coffee is "don't overdo it". Remember, the flavor should complement your favorite drink, rather than overwhelm it. Here are some general guidelines to help you buy only the best coffee syrups: Brix - the word 'brix' is used to describe the solids content of a syrup. The higher the brix, the higher the concentration of sugar and flavoring in the liquid. Many high-quality coffee syrups have a brix between 60 and 70 - that is, 60-70% solids. Higher concentration syrups will cost more initially, but you use less so they will last longer. Flavor vs. Sugar - even though a brix of 62 indicates a high quality syrup, you can't be sure of how much of the solids content is sugar and how much is flavor without checking the label and/or taste-testing the syrup. Some manufacturers promote their syrups as adding 'flavor without sweetness'. Your personal preference will dictate whether you prefer the sweetness. If you normally take sugar, you might find you do not need to add sugar if the syrup is quite sweet. Be aware of very thick, sticky syrups - these may be disguising a poor flavor extract with an overdose of sugar. Sweetener - you will find most syrups are flavored with cane-sugar. Other popular sweeteners include fruit-juice and corn sugar. Syrups that use other than cane-sugar are generally not as sweet - something you may or may not prefer. In any case, look for the "all-natural" statement on the label if you want to avoid artificial sweeteners. Preservatives - some syrups are preservative-free. The flavor may benefit from this - just remember that the shelf-life of these syrups will be shorter than those with added preservatives. Sugar Free or Low Carb - due to consumer demand, some companies are producing sugar-free coffee syrups. To be an informed consumer, you should check the label to determine whether these are unsweetened or artificially-sweetened and purchase according to your personal preference. Purpose - most syrups are general purpose, but some syrups will be labelled as baking, dessert or drink flavorings. They will vary in thickness, sweetness and flavoring depending on their purpose.
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