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Andrea Aliseda's Chicory de la Olla

Andrea Aliseda's Chicory de la Olla

Chicory de la olla is a caffeine-free take on the beloved café de la olla, a Mexican spiced coffee beverage made predominantly using piloncillo (unrefined raw cane sugar) and cinnamon in a clay pot (pot is English for olla). Café de la olla has origins in the Mexican Revolution during the early 20th century, where adelitas––what female soldiers were called––made the beverage over open fire for the troops using what they had on-hand, and usually at night. These days clay pots are still used, however they’re not the rule, and this one-pot coffee is enjoyed in the tranquil luxury of mornings with a big breakfast or a pan dulce to start the day.

Key to making this beverage’s flavor profile is cinnamon, and piloncillo (also known as panela). The spice of the cinnamon provides a warmth for the piloncillo to dance upon with its syrupy notes. Star anise and clove round out the spice with a touch of licorice, a little sweetness, and subtle bitterness from the clove. Roasted chicory powder not only gives the beverage a darker appearance, like that of coffee, but it's roasted, bitter, and nutty flavor also hints to a coffee-like flavor. A touch of cacao powder gives the finishing touch, alluding to Mexican coffees which usually carry a chocolate note. As someone who has grown sensitive to caffeine, making a caffeine-free version has allowed me to reconnect with this sweet and spicy hot beverage that rings in the colder months of the year for me––even though it's enjoyed year-round.

Recipe by: Andrea Aliseda

Ingredients

6 cups water
4 Spicewalla Cinnamon Sticks, crushed
3 Spicewalla Cloves
2 Spicewalla Star Anises
150 grams piloncillo
1 tbsp roasted chicory powder
1 tsp cacao powder

Shop the Recipe

Clove, Whole
Clove, Whole

$7.74

Star Anise
Star Anise

$6.36

Preparation

  1. Add the six cups of water to a pot along with the crushed cinnamon sticks (crush them with the back of a plate or bottom of a pan to crack them open for ultimate flavor), cloves, star anise, and piloncillo. 
  2. Dissolve the sugar and spices over medium heat, stirring frequently, until it comes to a simmer, about 15 minutes.
  3. Once simmering, add the roasted chicory powder and cacao powder and mix together with a wooden spoon, remove from heat. 
  4. Allow the chicory to steep uncovered for about 5 minutes before serving.
  5. Serve hot, and enjoy! 

** Chef’s note: this drink is traditionally served “black” but you can add milk or a dairy-free alternative if that is your preference.

 

Shop the Recipe

Clove, Whole
Clove, Whole

$7.74

Star Anise
Star Anise

$6.36

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