We got a new kitchen.
If you’ve been following me on social media, it’s been a huge spoiler alert, I know. I’ve been showing the process for the past seven weeks or so.
As of the first week of June, we were back to a fully functional kitchen (YAY!). But as these things go, there are some odds and ends that need to be finished up. So I’m not ready for an official reveal.
And I’ll also share some about the process of outsourcing this type of thing. I’ve had a lot of people ask if we did the work ourselves and the answer is a satisfying no.
We experienced some of those days – painting, tiling – in our first home. At this point, I’m fully willing to leave it to professionals. I still like to work on outdoor projects and build and distress furniture, but that’s about it related to home improvement projects.
I’ve also had some others who work in food ask about the remodel and how I handled it. You see when your kitchen is just your kitchen, it’s one thing. But when your kitchen is a big part of your work, it’s something very different. No kitchen meant a halt to some of my work for a while.
More to come on all of that. I promise.
For now, I’m easing my way back into cooking while I try to stop staring at all the amazing features in the new space and remain productive.
One thing I’m very happy about is that we are back in business before berry season passed me by! The season comes quick here. I remember growing up in Indiana when it was well after the 4th of July when my Dad’s blackberries would start producing. In this part of California, it starts in June and we are super lucky if it makes it into July. Then it’s over for another year.
I’m still getting used this timing and I find I’m completely caught by surprise when the berries arrive and again when they are gone.
I got my ducks in a row and got to the farm stand before I let that happen this year, though. I came back with a few containers of these beauties.
I usually eat them all fresh, but as I was drinking an iced coffee the other afternoon I thought about adding blackberry.
I was never a huge iced coffee fan until I moved to the South Central Valley. Now, I find it essential and often make it at home.
So I turned a handful of the berries into syrup. Stirred them into my chilled pick-me-up and took advantage of the gorgeous light in my new kitchen.
This is another one of those guides, versus being an exact recipe. Add the number of espresso shots you want, use your favorite kind of milk and the amount that suits you. The deep purple syrup gives the coffee a subtle pink color and a bright burst of sweet berry flavor.
Iced Blackberry Latte
Makes 1 serving
What you’ll need:
Generous 1/4 cup fresh blackberries
1 to 2 teaspoons raw sugar (depending on the tartness of your berries)
1 tablespoon water
1 to 2 shots espresso, cooled
1/2 to 3/4 cup cold milk, frothed if desired
How to make it:
Stir together the berries, sugar, and water in a small saucepan. Heat over medium for about 1 minute and gently smash the berries with a fork. Stir and let cook for 2 to 3 more minutes. Stir occasionally to ensure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.
Transfer the berries and juices to a small strainer set over a measuring cup. Use a fork to smash the berries more and extract the syrup. Let sit a few minutes to cool and smash again. You should end up with 1/2 to 1 tablespoon of blackberry syrup.
Pour the syrup into a tall glass. Add the espresso, stir, and fill the glass with ice. Pour in your desired amount of milk and serve.