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The first five chapters are mostly sweets, with the exception of a few that can go both ways, such as the bread loaf, waffles, and biscuits. The Early Birds and Breads chapter (has sixteen recipes that can be served for mornings, brunches, and light dinners. For those of you who have a special Sunday home brunch with the kids, you will find ideas such as French Toast with Caramel Coffee Sauce. Or for a hearty one add the Banana-Caramel Sauce, the Coffee Belgian Waffles with Yellow Gooseberry Sauce, a special sandwich prepared with the Mocha Sandwich Loaf, and more.

The Bars, Cookies, and Goodies chapter, has a variety of cookies that go from the gooey, like Coffee and White Chocolate Chunks to Crunchy Oatmeal Coffee Cookies to Crispy Speckled White Chocolate Chip Coffee Cookies. You will also find Cappuccino Brownies, White Chocolate Mochaccino Bars, caramel-coffee frosted Biscotti, Coconut Coffee Cocadas—a coconut confection— and a variety of tartlets and truffles and the softest, airiest, most delicate Ladyfinger Sandwiches. These small delicacies are all worth trying: They are simple to make, keep well, and are great for after-dinner sweets. I usually cut them or prepare them in the miniature size to allow myself multiple tastings. Moistiest Cakes are my favorite of all. I love baking cakes and playing around with a variety of sauces. Some like the Almond Liquor Coffee Cake, the Coconut Coffee Cake, the Coffee Butter Cake and the Hot Milk Cake are very simple to make and can be prepared by children. The chiffon cakes and hot milk cake are very versatile and go well with most of the frostings, sauces, and syrups in the book; they can also be served with fruit and cream or ice cream, or simply with powdered sugar. They are a great resource for entertaining. And it is so nice to have a small piece of homemade cake—it doesn’t even have to be frosted—right before bed time or at my favorite time: 4:30 in the afternoon, with . . . a cup of coffee! The chapter with most pizzazz, shine, and extravagance is definitely Cool Desserts. Here I looked for different kinds of sweets; some are very plain, simple-looking ones like the Four Milks Coffee Delight or Mamina’s Coffee Mousse, with deep flavors and wonderful sauces. Others are more sophisticated to the eye, like the bombes or the Coffee Crème Bavaroise, without sauces but with internal essence, and some everyday desserts like ice creams and the Café Bomba. The one chapter that could not be missing is Hot and Cold Drinks— wonderful, magical ways to prepare coffee. From the simplest tinto or black coffee to the super sundae party, all of the drinks are a great excuse to drink and eat coffee in the most exciting of ways. The most important tip here is to buy the best coffee you can get, and enjoy it with a friend. Coffee is made for you to share, to talk over, to sit with old friends and philosophize about the world, the oceans, the sun, the moon, all of those things that just make you happy by being there, at no cost, just there. The final chapters were the ones that gave me the hardest time to start, but the most wonderful moments as I worked and realized how well coffee and savory foods match. In some cases the coffee is a subtle, indefinable deep flavor that adds richness and mouthfeel. In others there is a definite coffee flavor that brings out the flavor of the main ingredient and matches it perfectly. In both Savory Main Dishes and Greens and More . . . , there is a definite sense of positive surprise when people taste the recipes. Try one, maybe the Asian Vinaigrette, and a meat, perhaps the Lamb Chops with White Balsamic and Yogurt Sauce or the Cornish Game Hens with Berry-Coffee Sauce . You will be completely flabbergasted, I am sure!

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patricia

Patricia McCausland-Gallo is a nutritionist, pastry chef, teacher, and food writer born in the Caribbean town of Barranquilla, Colombia. She has a B.S. in Foods and Nutrition from Louisiana State University, attended a School for Retort Operations, and completed courses of instruction prescribed by the Food and Drug Administration.