Warm, sweet and spicy, a steaming cup of Café de Olla is a perfect kick start to your day. Traditionally prepared in a clay pot (the Olla), I prefer to serve this spiced coffee in a big cappuccino bowl. Café de Olla (cah-FAY day OY-ah) is sweetened with little cones of rich, dark unrefined sugar called piloncillo which give a delicious burnt-sugar taste to the coffee, and are easily found in Mexican grocers or online at www.mexgrocer.com.
4 cups water
1/2 cup grated piloncillo (or dark brown sugar)
4 cinnamon sticks
2/3 cup coarse ground dark roast coffee
1/4 tsp anise seed (optional)
Cheesecloth or French press for filtering
Place water, sugar, cinnamon and cloves in heavy bottomed pan. Stir over a medium high heat until sugar is dissolved, and bring to a boil.
Stir in coffee and remove from heat. Allow to steep for about 5 minutes.
Strain through fine sieve or cheesecloth or pour into French press and push plunger down to filter. Pour into mugs and serve. Sprinkle with anise seed if desired.
Note: This is quite a sweet coffee, so reduce the amount of sugar if you usually drink your coffee unsweetened.
Serve with: Churros or pan dulce (Mexican sweet rolls).