CdM for CdM. Today it's Mexican Coffee, in honor of Cinco de Mayo (that's today, the 5th of May). Cinco de Mayo actually celebrates a victory by Mexican troops in La Batalla de Puebla, not Mexican Independence Day, as is often mistakenly believed.
I didn't know that until a few days ago. I feel some chagrin about my ignorance, having lived in the southwestern U.S. for the last 20 years where Cinco de Mayo is celebrated more vigorously even than St. Patty's Day. I should have known that. I'm afraid I've been pretty much in the same vein as most Americans, viewing Cinco de Mayo as an excuse to indulge in Mexican beer and tequila.
In fact, it's at a Cinco de Mayo celebration years ago that I discovered one of my favorite drinks - Mexican Coffee. My version of this drink is a blend of any good Mexican coffee and a healthy shot of tequila, preferably something in a Cuervo gold or 1800, followed by a short shot of Kahlua.
Most of the Mexican Coffee recipes I found online are a combination of coffee and cinnamon. Some variations add a little brown sugar, some whipped cream on top. This recipe was a little different: CAFE DE OLLA (MEXICAN SPICED COFFEE). It has the addition of cloves and orange zest.
Well, IMO, it's not good without the tequila, but each to their own. I also understand why some folx avoid the dreaded ta-kill-ya.
About.com has a good selection of recipes here: 1800 Cinco de Mayo Coffee Recipes
Many of the recipes suggest using an Irish Coffee cup to serve this drink. What? I guess I have some kind of strange prejudice going here, but I've always felt that Mexican Coffee is a distinctly macho drink. Puts hair on your chest! Don't serve it in a tall curly girly cup!!
I don't know if there is such a thing as a macho cup. Something clean and classic, but big enough to accomodate the coffee and shots. This one might do. I found the original photos here.
On the subject of Mexican Coffee, ineedcoffee.com has this to say:
Of the five million or so bags of coffee produced in Mexico, they consume just over half themselves before selling the rest on, mostly to the USA. Organic coffee is a Mexican speciality and, with most of their beans grown on small farms, you can be assured of a consistent quality without any of the mass-farming additives to dilute the taste. Although the majority of their Arabica coffee beans are grown in the Vera Cruz region of Mexico, it's the Altura farms in areas like Oaxaca that wow the taste buds of coffee aficionados. Why do you think they keep most of it for themselves?
They've got a recipe for dessert-style Mexican Coffee there as well. It's pretty standard - coffee, cinnamon and brown sugar, but with chocolate syrup added. Hmmm, that sounds really good. I'll have to try a squirt of chocolate with my ta-kill-ya and Kahlua. And coffee of course.
For more on Cinco de Mayo and Mexican Coffee:
Viva Cinco de Mayo!