Welcome to Do-It-Yourself Thursday at Buckeye Honda in Lancaster Ohio. Today we are talking about flavored coffee/hot chocolate and a way to display them in your kitchen. These make great gifts for someone or for yourself and are super easy to make. What coffee enthusiast in your life would not love to get an original and handcrafted gift from you? Exactly – All of them!
This is a two part D-I-Y and both are Super Simple and they won’t break the bank.
Step One: Make the syrup. There are many different options to choose from when deciding what syrups to make. You could go with an Irish Creme, Hazelnut, Raspberry, Caramel, Vanilla and the list goes on and on. For today we decided to go with Caramel and Irish Creme (Non-Alcoholic – we are working ya’ know).
One quick note on making these syrups; The foundation to all of these syrups is making a “simple syrup” and it really is simple! Simple syrup is made by mixing an equal amount of water and sugar together and then bringing it to a slow boil until the sugar is dissolved into the water. Simple Syrups are very versatile and once you do it once, it is a piece of cake. Some of the best cocktails are sweetened with simple syrup. Keep an eye out for those in an upcoming Foodie Friday!
Irish Creme Syrup:
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder
Step 1: In a medium saucepan combine the sugar and water. Bring to a slow boil and stir lightly until the sugar is completely dissolves and turn off the heat.
Step 2: Add the Vanilla, Almond and Cocoa Powder. Mix well! Now mix it some more to make sure it is combined completely.
Once the mixture has cooled use a small funnel and pour your mixture into your bottle. The mixture will do well refrigerated or left out, I refrigerate mine.
Caramel Syrup: There are two ways to make this one is easy and the other is REALLY easy.
Really Easy Version – Just like making the Irish Cream Syrup make your simple syrup with the water (1Cup) and sugar (1Cup) once the sugar is dissolved add in 1/4 cup of caramel that you bought from the store and stir it until well combined. You could use caramel that you made, just make sure it not a caramel candy and more of a caramel sauce.
Easy Way –
Step 1: mix 1/4 cup of the water and all of the sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat until the sugar is dissolved. DO NOT LET IT BOIL UNTIL THE SUGAR IS DISSOLVED COMPLETELY. In order to do this adjust the heat if needed and keep stirring. You are basically making caramel at this point.
Step 2: Turn the heat to high and let boil for two minutes
Step 3: Uncover and stir gently while it continues to boil. Once the color turns to a deep amber color, remove the heat.
Step 4: CAUTION: READ CAREFULLY BUT DO NOT BE SCARED: Stand back to avoid scalding yourself as the mixture will begin to bubble rapidly when you do the next step.
Step 5: Add the rest of the water, again it will start to boil rapidly – once the bubbles settle a bit add the vanilla and salt and stir it gently to mix. Do not leave out the salt… the little bit of salt brings out the great flavor. Let it cool. This mixture will last in the refrigerator for about 6 months.
Nifty Bottles: You can pick up some great looking bottles in the kitchen department of many discount stores. These bottles will often times have pour spouts already on them. All you have to do is add a little personality to the bottle.
Get some ribbon, cloth cord, textured paper.
Using your best artistic powers draw a design on the paper with the flavor of the syrup that you just made or do what I did and use Photoshop to make a label. Need some ideas or maybe some help with this check out this website for some great photoshop tools and ideas, many are free!
Once you have your label be creative and wrap the ribbon around the middle of the bottle and then glue your label over top of the ribbon or leave out the ribbon and tie it to the neck of the bottle. You can do the same thing with the cloth cord to give it a little different texture.
Check out the way we decided to do ours… we used some simple construction paper to wrap around the middle and then printed out the labels. You can see these at the coffee bar at Buckeye Honda where we serve freshly brewed Tim Hortons coffee.
We hope you found this weeks DIY Thursday interesting and possibly inspiring to make something yourself. If you have any comments feel free to leave them in the comment section or on our facebook page. We would love to share one of your ideas as well, hit us up and let us know your ideas!