Cooking with Coffee

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Think coffee only belongs in a cup? Think again! The bold, robust flavor of coffee adds another dimension to a variety of dishes, all the way from dinner to dessert. The bitterness of a dark roast is just as perfect in tiramisu as it is on an Angus steak. In fact, the earthy flavor of coffee is an ideal companion in any recipe ripe for a sweet, nutty or bold taste.

Don’t worry; using coffee doesn’t turn your dish into a cappuccino. Partnered with the right ingredients, coffee blends in to bring out natural, robust flavors. Ready to round out your recipe box with some new ideas? Let coffee transform your kitchen and your table.

In Desserts

Using coffee in desserts, especially chocolate, balances the sweet and the savory. A half-cup of coffee adds nice depth to banana bread. Espresso powder is also a commonly-used ingredient to intensify flavor in chocolate baked goods, and you can find it in many grocery stores. Espresso powder newbie? Try it in this Chocolate Chip Cake with Coffee Whipped Cream.

If you really want to impress your guests, whip up this simple coffee liqueur icing to top off cakes, brownies and even sweet rolls. Here’s what you’ll need:

Coffee Liqueur Icing:

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons softened butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons coffee liqueur
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Use a stand mixer or hand mixer on medium speed to combine all ingredients until the icing is smooth and uniform in texture. To keep it fresh, place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the icing until it’s ready to use.

As a Marinade

Coffee tenderizes meat as it enhances the flavor. When pairing the bold, earthy undertones of a dark roast with a steak or brisket, the entire meal explodes with a flavor. Try this coffee-balsamic marinade the next time you grill out. As a rule, meats should soak up a marinade for several hours to several days.

As a Rub

Bring out the smoky flavor in your main course by rubbing down your steak or chicken with a blend featuring robust coffee, like Rex Coffee’s Brazil Dark. A lighter roast is better suited for a lamb or duck you intend to slow roast for hours. If you’re throwing a chop or a tenderloin on the grill, coffee can liven up your traditional rub, or even your BBQ sauce.

Viewing coffee as an ingredient, instead of just a morning pick-me-up, can change your entire view of your kitchen. When it comes to being creative with coffee, the possibilities are endless. Clabber Girl’s Rex Roasting Company brews multiple delicious blends, from our fabulous Original Roast to our amped-up Double XX. Whether you’re pouring it into a cup or over a roast, cooking with coffee is sure to energize your palate.