What does coffee say when it’s sad?

“Pour me…pour me…”coffee 4

I love coffee. Well, NOW I love coffee, ever since going to New Zealand. I don’t know if you know this, but Wellington is a city full of coffee snobs. They love their coffee, and make a damn good cuppa joe. Though, they don’t call it that. They have very specific coffee names like latte, flat white, mocha…They don’t bother with any of that lowbrow ‘filter coffee’ nonsense. Their caffeinated confections are strictly espresso based. And oh so delicious.

Once, I had a latte (my poison of choice while there) that was made with local honey as a sweeter. It was, quite seriously, the best latte I have ever had, before or since. Nothing can compare to local NZ honey, brewed with fresh milk and their espresso. And I have not, as of yet, been able to replicate the flavor. Much to my disappointment.

Before my New Zealand stint, I used to hate coffee. I couldn’t drink it without making it light and sweet. Do you know what that actually means in the coffee business? A small, 10 ounce, coffee, with cream and sugar, has 17 grams of sugar. That’s the normal amount of sugar for chain coffee shops.

17 grams is just over a tablespoon…in 10 ounces of coffee. Keep in mind that 1 cup is 8 ounces. That’s a lot of sugar. A light and sweet means two more scoops of cream and sugar (which is usually what goes into a large coffee) are dumped it into your small cup–thinking back on it, that’s terrifying. That is, roughly, 3 tablespoons of sugar in a small cup of coffee.

 Now, a ‘light and sweet’ order is not an uncommon order in coffee chains in the US. It’s amazing I didn’t go into some kind of sugar shock, or develop some kind of sugar induced illness; though, looking back, it might have explained my poor mood and tiredness. Have you ever noticed how there’s a bit of undisolved sugar in the bottom of you coffee cup, or that the last sip you take is overly sweet? That’s because your solution (coffee, cream, sugar) is over saturated–meaning that the liquid cannot possibly dissolve anymore sugar. Think about that.  I know I was guilty of it.

I had a summer job at a very popular coffee chain, so I can give you first hand experience about the coffee habits of a small portion of my town. I worked from 5:30 am until 12:30 pm, Monday through Friday. This was both the best and worst shift to have: sure, I stayed busy the entire time–what with the work force needing their caffeine fix. But…that also means they weren’t caffeinated before they got to me. So, they were either bleary eyed and mumbling their order, or in such a need of a fix that I got snapped at.

Anyway, long story short–lots of overly creamed and sugared orders.

When I got to NZ, it seemed to me that it was almost sacrilege to put sugar in your latte. But, once my taste buds realized that there was actually flavor underneath all the sugar, my taste widened considerably. Coffee has never been the same since. I haven’t had a good latte since I’ve gotten home. It’s sad, but probably for the best.

Now, I brew coffee at home. I use my French press religiously. It’s a stronger cup, and I think it just tastes better. Though, I do love using the very old school percolator that we have. Sadly, there’s no steamed milk, but that’s ok.

I found a recipe from Global Travel Adventures for Pakistani coffee that I knew I just had to try. I had a breakfast date planned with some friends and I decided to whip this up. I was the only one who drank it, but it was wonderful. It was sweet from the cinnamon, a little spicy, creamy, warm, and wonderful.

Definitely try it out!

I changed the recipe a bit, in order to conform with what I had in my pantry. I have also never had traditional Pakistani coffee, so really this is my interpretation.

Molly’s Version of Pakistani Coffee

coffee 1
1.5 cups water
1.5 cups milk
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 Tbsp coffee, dark roast


  1. Place a medium sized pot on the stove. Pour and place everything into this pot and turn the heat up to medium high.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil. Once reached, turn the head down to a simmer.
  3. Simmer the mixture, uncovered, for ten minutes.
  4. Ladle the liquid as it simmers, pouring from up high to aerate the coffee mixture. Do this about twenty times.
  5. Once the ten minutes is over, strain the coffee mixture.  (I used my loose leaf tea cup strainer. But use whatever you have on hand.)
    coffee 2
  6. Divide into cups and serve.
    coffee 3

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