You guys. You guys. Good morning! It’s fall. Today is the first 60-degree day in mid-Michigan, so I’m kicking off a new blog feature, Food Fridays, with a seasonal favorite.
I’m sure that if you’re on Twitter, or even the Internet, you’ve seen the sassy bit, “If you say the phrase ‘pumpkin spice latte’ three times, a white girl in yoga pants will appear and tell you all her favorite things about fall.” It’s terrible, but so true. I’m not wearing yoga pants right now, but you get the gist. Fall means pumpkin spice latte season.
I had my first pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks two years ago and I hated it. It was chalky and sludgy and just not flavorful at all to me. Not to mention it’s expensive at $4.50 a pop. But then again, I’m not a huge pumpkin fan. Determined and desperate to embrace all things fall, including pumpkin, I started my mission to create my own version of the popular seasonal drink.
I like to think I succeeded.
After much trial and error, I created a simple syrup that can be used in many ways. It can be mixed into regular coffee with some milk or cream in place of sugar, or it can be used as a flavored syrup in any espresso drink.
Did I mention it’s easy? Just in case you have a few minutes to spare this weekend, you can make it ahead of time and store to use later.
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
5 whole cloves
1 1/2 tbsp. pumpkin puree
1 1/2 tbsp. maple syrup (not pictured below- but I used an organic syrup from Meijer)
Combine all the ingredients in a small slow cooker or a saucepan, and simmer on low for a few hours, depending on how syrup-y you want your sauce to be. I cooked mine in a mini-electric slow cooker in my bedroom because have I mentioned how amazing this smells? You won’t need to light your apple and pumpkin scented candle while this brews.
And you’re done. Just strain it to get clumps of spices, cloves and pumpkin gunk out of it and you’re all set to create pumpkin spice coffee masterpieces. Let me know if you try it, and what you create with it!