Well before the Dude Abided, I was a White Russian fan. My first legal drink in a bar was a White Russian. I remember thinking, “Vodka and milk? This is going to be gross.” But what I didn’t know about then was the Kahlua, which is a coffee flavored liquer that when added to vodka and milk transforms the cocktail to a drink I like to refer to as Quik with a Kick as it is similar to a glass of the Nestle’s drink with a decidedly adult finish.
Kahlua is delicious and can be used in other drinks besides White Russians as well as in baking but at around $20 a bottle, it can be expensive. I used the knock off store version for years before I figured out how to make my own. I have some that will most likely be poured into a mug of hot chocolate tonight to put a dent on the chill in the air.
- 4 cups water*
- 1/2 cup instant coffee*
- 4 cups brown sugar
- 1/2 liter vodka **update** I recently made a batch with a full liter of vodka on accident and actually liked it a bit a bit more, so I would say use a minimum of a 1/2 liter
- 2 vanilla beans or 2 Tablespoon vanilla
Combine water, instant coffee, and brown sugar in large pot and boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. This is important because the boiling point for alcohol is 79°. If you put the vodka in before it has cooled to at least this temperature, you risk loosing some of the alcohol to evaporation. Combine the vodka with the cooled coffee mixture. Cut the vanilla beans in half and place into a clean 1 liter glass bottle. Fill bottle with the coffee liquer and give it a shake. The black specks floating around are the seeds from the vanilla bean also called “vanilla caviar”. Yum! Store in a cool, dark place for at least 2 weeks. The longer it sits, the tastier it gets but that is usually as long as I can wait.
* You can substitute 4 cups of your favorite strongly brewed coffee for the water and instant coffee. I actually had some decent instant that a friend brought me back from Jamaica in my last batch that worked out great but use whatever you like.