Updated: Jun 18
Café au lait (“coffee with milk” in French) is a coffee drink made of strong coffee and hot or steamed milk. The drink originated in France and uses equal parts coffee and milk. It’s similar to a traditional Italian cafe latte, but it uses strong coffee instead of espresso.
cafe au lait
1 part hot strong coffee (1 cup), French roast
1 part milk (1 cup), steamed
Make a strong French roast coffee using your method of choice (Moka Pot, French press, coffee pot, or other).
Steam the milk by heating the milk until it barely reaches a boil. Whisk briskly with a wire whisk to create foam (or froth with an espresso machine or a frother).
Pour the coffee in a cup. Pour the steamed milk into the coffee, holding back the foam with a spoon. Top with the foam and serve immediately.
You can add 2 Tablespoons of sugar and 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract to the milk to create a Vanilla Cafe au Lait. If you’re making cafe au lait for a breakfast or brunch, you’ll want to vary the method. You may want to make a few pots in advance and store in a warmer or thermos. Then, make several cups of frothed milk (the frothing tool is best for a large batch, but any method will do).
Here are a few desserts to pair with an au lait:
Blueberry muffins or scones