It’s getting darker and the light is getting softer as the leaves start to turn. Autumn is beckoning. Gone are the fun temptations of ice-cream and milkshakes. My girls snuggle up on the couch with the yapper and ask for an old favourite that my mom used to make me. It probably started off as treat made up of whatever ingredients were readily available in our empty pantry. Now my big girl would choose it over hot chocolate any day.
I’ve been lazy (and practical I guess) and have been making our vanilla milk in the microwave. But this time I decided to warm the milk on the stove and what a difference! I never realised it! The microwave might create heat, but it doesn’t turn the milk into that luxurious, creamy and slightly frothy consistancy. I had forgotten. The smell of warm milk heating in a pot, steam rising, the gentle rhythm of the wooden spoon hitting the side of the pot, slowly stirring back and forth, so that it doesn’t burn – the patient action as soothing as the milk itself.
We’ve always used vanilla essence for our vanilla milk, with a spoonful of sugar for each cup. I guess the right way of making it would be to soak real vanilla pods in the milk? Here in Germany you get sachets of vanilla sugar (essence and pods are less common) and they work perfectly for vanilla milk – one sachet per cup.
I sprinkled a little cinnamon on top this time and every warm sip brought back mixtures of memories. Memories of my mom stirring melkkos in the kitchen – a special milky cinnamon treat. Of being woken on icy winter mornings with a warm drink to entice us to crawl out of bed. And that wonderful feeling of luxury – weekends in bed with a good book and warm cup of vanilla milk.