Simple Joys (Like Frothed Milk)

Another Christmas has come and gone. This one has been a little different. We almost always leave the tree and decorations up until Epiphany (just because we can), but usually there’s not a shred of wrapping paper to be seen after we finish opening gifts. Even now it’s still strewn across the floor. It’s impossible to clean it all up when the kitten immediately begins playing with all of the paper as soon as we start gathering it up again. (I’m going to be a pushover of a parent, aren’t I?)

How can I resist that cute face?

How can I resist that cute face?

Remind me again why we didn’t have a pet before? I can’t wait to experience Christmas with kids.

Anyways, ever since we visited Quebec over the summer, I’ve had a new appreciation for my French heritage. Okay, so besides practicing the language more, it mostly translates into the addition of Quebecois food. But there was one major favorite missing from my at-home repertoire: cafe au lait.

Drinking it from a traditional bowl is a must!

Drinking it from a traditional bowl is a must!

The problem: I didn’t have a milk frother. It’s essential to a proper bowl of cafe au lait. My mom has one because it’s attached to a fancy espresso machine, which means that I’ve only been able to get my fix at her house. And while I enjoy coffee, I just don’t drink it enough to justify an espresso machine.

So this Christmas, my husband set to work on researching milk frothers. About two hours of undercover reading later, he found what seems (at least, so far) to be just the right one: a $15-ish manual one from Amazon. Unlike an appliance, it’s hard to break, and it froths milk at any temperature (even cold!) in about a minute.

Just a metal pitcher with a thin screen that slides up and down the rod connected to the lid.

The frother: just a metal pitcher with a thin screen that slides up and down the rod connected to the lid.

Pour in some milk (even if it's cold).

Pour in some milk (even if it’s cold).

Move the handle on the lid up and down about twenty times, and the milk froths up like nobody's business.

Move the handle on the lid up and down about twenty-five times, and the milk froths up like nobody’s business.

Pour over coffee with some sugar, and voilà! Cafe au lait!

Pour in with coffee, leave some foam on top, and voilà! Cafe au lait!

I’m still perfecting how many times to pump the handle and I still need proper bowls to drink it French style. (For now, does a Belle cup count? She’s from a French fairytale…) But it’s the little things that keep life fun.

What’s your favorite coffee? Have you tried cafe au lait before?

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6 responses to “Simple Joys (Like Frothed Milk)

  • homedreamer07

    That does look like a fun kitchen gadget! In my opinion, a Belle mug is a perfect substitute:)

  • Anthony Lee Collins

    I do like frothed milk, but the main place I drink coffee is at work, and there’s only one espresso machine. I don’t like frothed milk enough to stand line for it. :-)

    For a while I was on a very tight budget, so I mostly stuck to tea (cheaper). So now, any sort of coffee seems like a treat, even when I drink it every day.

    • S.B. Roberts

      I’m with you. Coffee always feels like a treat, but I think it’s because I’m a tea connoisseur so I normally only have a few cups of coffee a week. Of course, now that I brew the coffee strong for cafe au lait (counteracts diluting it with milk), I’ve been having it more often than I used to. :)

  • Rebekah Loper

    Oooo, now that’s a nifty milk frother! I have a little battery-operated one that is essentially a miniature, high-powered whisk, but it doesn’t froth cold milk, to my understanding. But that’s fine, I usually use for chai lattes, hehe.

    Christmas with pets is a lot of fun! I can’t to experience it with children, either, though. It’ll be magical all over again, hopefully!

    • S.B. Roberts

      Ooh, that’s fun! When I asked for one, that’s what I expected, but I’ve been delighted by the manual one so far.

      I’m sure it will be. Here’s hoping we both get to experience that soon. :)

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