I’ve heard the vilest things about pumpkin spice lattés. When I first asked my companion about them about a month ago (yes, yes, I live under a rock, but you should know that by now) he spun an elaborate description of gag-worthy repulsiveness. Fellow bloggers, too, have complained about the foulness of the beverage, while the Starbucks in my town hung up tongue-in-cheek posters advertising PSL as “the flavour that ate the world”.
Which meant, of course, that I absolutely had to try a pumpkin spice latté. First the commercial version at Starbucks (which, to my knowledge, doesn’t contain any pumpkin) and then a homemade version whipped up in my miniature kitchen. Peeps, I’m a believer.
The Starbucks drink isn’t worth writing paragraphs about. Sweet and spicy, with or without real pumpkins – it’s the concept and the marketing that the world’s coffee behemoth must be given kudos for. The homemade beverage, on the other hand, was a most wonderful surprise! Frothy and milky, with a hint of real pumpkin kicked up by ginger, cloves, and cinnamon. A lot like chai, actually, but thicker and heartier.
Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latté
This may have been the pièce de résistance in my pumpkin everything season endeavour, but it was incredibly easy and quick to make. I scoured the web for recipes, which I combined into the following procedure. For two servings, add 2 cups milk, 2 tbsp pumpkin purée (I just scooped out 2 tbsp from a roasted Hokkaido pumpkin half I had waiting in the fridge for this pupose), 1-2 tbsp honey, 5 thin slices of ginger and 1 tsp each of ground cinnamon and cloves in a saucepan. Cook until hot, but not boiling. Meanwhile, make 1/2 cup strong coffee (I used drip coffee and it was delicious). Remove the milk and pumpkin mixture from the heat and blend until foamy (a stick mixer does wonders here). To serve, distribute the milk and pumpkin mixture into two mugs and pour the coffee over that. Serve with a slice of succulent pumpkin bread.