You might have noticed that we like to do a little something special with coffee for holidays throughout the year. We started brainstorming ideas for a special recipe, and everyone chimed in with traditional Easter basket and Easter breakfast favorites. In the end, everything sounded so tasty that we couldn't decide. That's why you've got a full basket of delicious traditional Easter treats, transformed into adult goodies through the magic of coffee. Even better, we made all of these tasty treats with one of this week's featured coffees
, tailoring the recipes to take advantage of the flavor notes each of them brings to the cup. Remember, you get free shipping on our featured coffees each week.
Traditional Easter Goodies with a Coffee Twist
The recipes we adapted all have something in common besides coffee. Each of them has a place in Easter traditions one of us recalls from our childhood -- except the chocolate truffles, which are a purely adult confection we couldn't resist. We've included hot cross buns, traditionally eaten on Good Friday, egg nests adapted from Italian Easter basket bread, chocolate covered marshmallow eggs and everyone's childhood favorite -- marshmallow peeps.We also made recipes do double-duty - the coffee marshmalow is used for the peeps and the marshmallow egg centers, and we adapted the chocolate mocha coating to become chocolate truffles. Finally, since there's no sense letting anything go to waste, we buried boiled eggs in used coffee grounds or let them soak overnight in the remains of a super-strength pot we made to flavor the breads.
Our Easter Buffet Coffees
Each week, we pick a few outstanding coffees offered by our favorite roasters to feature. This week, we decided to adapt the recipes to highlight and bring out the underlying flavors in our featured coffees. We fell in love with Sweet Bloom's Ethiopia Darratu at first whiff. The inherent sweetness, floral-spice notes and buttery shortbread flavor made it a natural pairing with the fruits and spices in hot cross buns. The pure, sweet balance of Brown Coffe's Cottonwood Espresso was the perfect ingredient in the marshmallow, where we wanted strong coffee flavor with few distractions. Bow Truss' Threadless Blend features rich chocolate and dark cherry notes that added depth and sweetness to the semi-sweet chocolate we chose for the truffles, while 1000 Faces' Meridian blend has just enough spice and snappy acidity to cut the buttery richness of the Italian Easter bread.
Easter Coffee Buffet Recipes
Italian Easter Basket Coffee Bread
- 2 1/2 cups of flour, divided
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 ounce active dry yeast
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1/4 cup very finely ground coffee
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 eggs
- 4 whole, raw eggs
- 2 tbsp melted butter
Hot Cross Coffee Buns
- In a small pan, heat the milk with 1/4 cup very finely ground Meridian coffee. Just before it comes to a boil, remove it from the heat and set it aside to steep.
- In a large bowl, combine a cup of flour, sugar, salt and yeast, mixing it together well.
- Strain the milk through a coffee filter. Stir in 2 tbsp of butter gently until the butter is soft, but not melted.
- Add the coffee milk to the flour gradually, stirring constantly. Beat in two eggs and another 1/2 cup of flour, then add the remaining flour 1/2 cup at a time.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead it for about 8 minutes. Put the dough in an oiled bowl, cover it and let it rise for an hour.
- Punch down the risen dough and turn it out onto a floured board. Cut it into four equal pieces and let them rest for about 10 minutes. Roll each piece into a log about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Shape each log into a ring, sealing the ends together and put them on a buttered baking sheet. Place an egg into the open center of each ring. Cover the baking sheet and let the dough rise a second time until it is doubled in bulk.
- Brush the risen rings with melted butter and bake in a preheated375 F. oven for about 55 minutes.
The recipe for our hot cross coffee buns is very similar to the Italian bread recipe. Substitute 3/4 cup very strong, brewed Ethiopian Darratu coffee for the infused coffee milk and follow the directions above through step 4. Knead 3/4 cup of dried currants or raisins and 1 tsp of ground cinnamon into the dough before setting it to rise the first time. After punching down the dough, shape it into 12 round balls, and fit them side by side into a greased 9x12-inch baking dish. Cover them and let them rise again until doubled in bulk. Brush the tops with beaten egg yolk mixed with a tbsp of water and bake at 375 F. for 20 minutes. When the buns have cooled, mix a glaze of confectionners sugar and milk and paint crosses on top of each bun.
Coffee Marshmallow for Peeps and Eggs
- 1 pkg plain gelatin
- 3 1-oz shots of espresso made with Cottonwood Espresso Blend, double strength
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1 tbsp light corn syrup
- 1 cup colored sugar
Dark Mocha Coating for Marshmallow Eggs
- Sprinkle gelatin over one shots of espresso in a small bowl. Let it stand until the gelatin is softened.
- In the meantime, stir together the remaining espresso, sugar and corn syrup in a heavy saucepan over a low flame. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar reaches 245 F.
- Using a whisk attachment, start beating the gelatin at low speed with an electric mixer. Slowly add the hot syrup, letting it run down the side of the bowl so it doesn't splash over the whisk.
- Increase the beater speed gradually until it reaches high. Continue beating on high speed until the marshmallow is about the texture of stiff meringue. It will take about 15-20 minutes from start to finish.
- Put about half the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe out the peeps and let them sit until they are slightly tacky, then roll them in colored sugar and set them aside to dry for a couple of hours.
- Scoop the remaining marshmallow mixture out in spoonfuls, turning each spoonful to create an egg shape and place them on a lightly sugared cookie sheet to dry for a few hours.
- 12 oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- 4 oz. Bow Truss Threadless Blend, ground for Turkish coffee
Mexican Espresso Truffles
- Place the chocolate chips in the top half of a double boiler and set it simmering water.
- Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the heavy cream and ground coffee. Stir the mixture over a low flame until the cream starts simmering around the edges. Continue stirring for another minute. The mixture should be the color of dark chocolate milk.
- Very slowly add the cream to the chocolate, stirring gently to blend it thoroughly.
- Dip each marshmallow egg into the chocolate to coat it completely. Lift it out with a fork, letting excess chocolate drain off, and set on a cookie sheet to harden. If necessary, place the cookie sheet into the refrigerator to finish hardening.
- Remaining chocolate coffee mixture
- 1 lb confectioners' sugar
- Remove the chocolate from the heat and allow it to cool to room temperature.
- Using an electric mixer, beat the chocolate, gradually increasing the speed from low to high.
- When the chocolate is lightened in color, start adding confectioners sugar, about 1/2 cup at a time. Beat thoroughly after each addition. Stop when the chocolate is the texture of thick frosting, or when it will hold stiff peaks.
- Scoop out spoonfuls of chocolate or use a melon baller. Roll each truffle in a coating. We used confectioners sugar, powdered cinnamon, powdered cocoa and sesame seeds.
Enjoy the weekend. Don't forget - if you have a special Easter basket to fill, we have gift cards available that you can print out and tuck into an egg, and our featured coffees include free shipping until the 22nd.
P.S. Stay tuned for a special holiday sale!