Two years ago I wouldn't touch a cup of coffee. A creamy frappuchino? Yes, mocha please. However, I must admit, that now I'm a full-fledged coffee addict...uh...enthusiast? lover? Whatever, I'm a fan.
I blame it partially on a semester where I took 18 credit hours (because that's always brilliant idea when you're married and have a little kid) so for the final few weeks of it I was up until 1:00 every night doing homework. That got me over my dislike of coffee really fast.
Then we happened to have an adorable little baby. And as much as I completely love that kiddo, she isn't a big fan of sleeping. Up until a week or two ago, Harper would wake up every 2 hours (or less) at night. Making coffee in the morning became a must. She's currently doing two four hour stretches of sleep at night and I pretty much feel like a whole new person.
One of my new favorite things is once or twice a week when Harper goes down for a nap before Lillian wakes up for the day. I get a little bit of time to pour a cup of coffee and curl up on the couch with it while I read my Bible.
And since I'm on a mission to get more real food and less processed junk into my family's food, I've started making my own caramel-flavored coffee creamer. Using just two ingredients: organic half & half and raw/turbinado sugar. You could also use honey if that's more your style. Or substitute almond milk if you're dairy-free. Just follow this method:
Pour 2/3 cup turbinado sugar into a saucepan. Place it on the burner at medium heat.
After a minute or two the sugar will start to melt. Start continuously stirring at this point.
The sugar will turn a lovely caramel color. Because, well, it's caramel now. Yay!
Pat yourself of the back because chefs like to pretend that making caramel is really difficult. It's not.
As soon as all of the sugar has melted and turned a caramel color, pour half & half into the pan. Keep stirring while you're pouring. The caramel might seize up a bit from the cold half & half but just keep stirring and cooking it and the caramel will melt back down.
And that's it! You've just made all natural caramel-flavored coffee creamer!
Which looks pretty cute in a jar but tastes even better in your coffee. Or tea, if that's your thing. I can't stomach the taste of hot tea. But who knows, in two years I might be a tea aficionado. Probably not.
All Natural Caramel Coffee Creamer
Yields about 2 cups
1 pint organic half & half (or use almond milk)
2/3 cup turbinado sugar or honey
Pour sugar into a saucepan over medium heat. As soon as the sugar begins to melt, begin stirring constantly. Continue stirring until the sugar has all dissolved and turned a amber color. Keep stirring (you're not going to stop stirring, right?) and pour the half & half into the pan. If the caramel seizes up, just continue to stir and cook it until it melts into the half & half.
Remove from the heat and allow to cool before transferring to a jar or other container. Store in your fridge. This will keep until it reaches the expiration date that was on the half & half.