For coffee-lovers, the perfect cup is one of life's simple pleasures. Invigorating, comforting and rich, coffee is a match for any occasion; to kickstart the day, to linger with over brunch, to enjoy with a slice of something sweet in the afternoon, or as the final act to a great meal. There are very few moments that aren't improved with a steaming (or iced) brew.
But your love for the beans doesn't have to knock off when your barista does; there's now more ways to creatively add more coffee to your life. From whipping up something special for a chilly night in, to toasting to the weekend in style, these new spins on the classic drink will give you a new-found appreciation of coffee.
1. Add a splash of cold water
Preparing a cup of instant coffee using cold water might seem like madness, but Moccona Coffee Ambassador Shaun Kumar says there's sound reasoning behind it. "When you dissolve instant coffee directly into hot water, the heat can scald the coffee causing a harsh, bitter taste. By mixing your instant with a little cold water first, the coffee dissolves more gently once introduced to hot water." Kumar recommends starting with one heaped teaspoon of Moccona Barista Reserve instant coffee, dissolved into two tablespoons of cold water. Follow with hot water, watch the velvety crema form on top and, if you want it, add a splash of milk. "This gives you a very balanced flavour." Voila. Freshly brewed taste in an instant.
2. Whip it up
If you haven't seen this Tik Tok craze, inspired by 'Dalgona' aerated coffee from Korea, prepared to be buzzed (coffee purists avert your eyes). Combine equal parts coffee, sugar and hot water in a bowl, and whip with a hand mixer for 3-4 minutes until the mixture becomes light and fluffy. Fill a glass two-thirds with frothed milk, spoon over the whipped coffee, then dive in.
3. Make a mocha mousse
Melt 280gm dark chocolate over a gentle heat. In a bowl, whip together 1½ cups cream, ⅔ cup icing sugar, one tablespoon instant coffee (we love Moccona's Barista Reserve Classic Crème) and one teaspoon vanilla extract. Fold a little of the whipped cream mixture into the melted chocolate, then fold the chocolate into the remaining whipped cream. Divide into six glasses, chill for two hours, and serve with a little cocoa powder dusted over the top.
4. Create a coffee rub for barbecued meats
Ask any grill-master and they'll tell you rubbing your pork ribs, beef brisket or chicken wings in a mix of sugar, salt and spices before they hit the barbecue is a guaranteed way to maximise flavour. Take your barbecue rub to the next level by stirring through a teaspoon or two of instant coffee; it'll add a richness and aroma that'll have your guests fighting for the last serve.
5. Toast with a toasted marshmallow Espresso Martini
To create this campfire-inspired twist on the classic cocktail, soak a handful of marshmallows in vodka for a week, strain the mixture, and discard the marshmallows. Dissolve one teaspoon of Moccona Barista Reserve Blonde Roast instant coffee in one tablespoon cold water, and add to a cocktail shaker with 35mL coffee liqueur, half a teaspoon vanilla extract, 50mL of the marshmallow-infused vodka and plenty of ice. Shake until frothy, then pour into a chilled Martini glass and top with a marshmallow toasted over the stove.