let’s talk about coffee
I have a confession to make. Lately, instead of making tea or a fresh pot of coffee, I’ve been drinking Trader Joe’s instant coffee in the morning on my way to work. I have never been a hot-beverage-in-the-morning type person… I have always sort of gotten around to a cup of tea or coffee a few hours after I wake up. But now that I’m a commuter again, it’s something to look forward to. That, and my audiobook (OMG, quick aside, The Prestige is getting so good. I am going to have to physically restrain myself from watching the movie this weekend — I don’t want to wreck the ending!).
But lately I am so foggy in the morning that I can barely remember to turn on the water to boil, let alone decide which tea or make the ever-so-slight effort to put together the French press (we don’t have a coffeemaker — the French press is terrific and works great 99% of the time). So I’ve just been reaching for the nice little jar of TJ’s instant. One heaping teaspoon into a mug of hot water, topped with half-and-half (no sugar), and I’m happy. (I went with soy creamers for awhile but I never got used to the taste… even though we are continually trying to go dairy-free, there are a few certain exceptions we can’t seem to let go of. Half-and-half is one of them.)
I have to say… it’s pretty darn good. I definitely notice the difference when I make a pot of regular coffee (fresh is better), but it’s not like I don’t like the taste of the instant; it’s pretty good actually. I’m getting to quite enjoy it. If I add a dollop of hazelnut syrup, it’s quite delicious. I found this discussion on Chowhound about instant coffees and now I think I need to explore this new world.
I’m also a fan of Nescafe decaf (I only allow myself one, maybe two cups of caffeinated beverages in the morning and then I switch to herbal or decaf the rest of the day). It’s not as good at TJ’s, but it’s fine, especially when you dress it up with trashy flavored non-dairy creamer. My favorite lately has been the Almond Joy creamer. Pure trash, but it’s kind of a sweet treat in the afternoon. (Lara, not a word from you about this being a milkshake, not coffee. I like my hot coffee milkshakes!)
The other awesome thing about instant is that there is no coffeepot to clean up, and no teabag to dispose of. I’m not left feeling guilty that I’ve left a mess for Terri to clean up when she goes into the kitchen.
So, that’s my trashy confession of the day. But seriously, if you’re not a hardcore coffee snob, try the TJs instant. It’s quite good, and I would keep it on hand for recipes needing coffee flavoring, too.