Spend some time around food52 and you'll learn: there's pretty much nothing we love more than coffee. Habitual lattes aside, our beloved coffee adds depth and flavor in cooking too, in everything from buttercreams to braises. For this contest, we want you to work coffee (or espresso) into all of the above -- drinks, sweets, and savory dishes alike.
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Are we making breakfast or brining chicken? Coffee, milk, butter, orange, brown sugar, black peppercorns, whole cloves, and star anise. (Not pictured: chicken -- try as we might, we just can't make raw chicken look good.)
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In goes the salt. (Merrill, let Amanda help!)
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Stopping by woods on a snowy evening ... you know the rest!
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With conviction, Amanda pounds the star anise, black peppercorns, and whole cloves into the snow -- oops, excuse us -- salt.
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Now that's what we call moral support.
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No, Merrill, you may not use your orange as a handpuppet.
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The dry ingredients moistened with orange juice and poised for coffee action. Funky looking? Yes. The stuff of a great brine? You betcha.
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We make our coffee in a French press (this one is actually the classic Bodum, despite the new, angular design -- we miss the handsome little feet!).
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Why, Merrill! How well you pour your coffee!
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It may as well be late night at Amanda's -- doesn't it look like the midnight oil's burning in the background as we add the brine to the ice to cool?
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An autumn punch? No, and don't even think about drinking this.
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No matter how awkward the task, Merrill always manages to smile through it. Wider, Merrill, wider!
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After the bird finished brining, we arranged him neatly on a sheet pan, re-posing his flailing limbs -- gingerroot smartly instructs us dry him out for an hour in the fridge post-brine to help the skin crisp up.
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Skin nice and dry, we brown him on all sides. A bronzed bird in a blue Dutch oven -- a match made in heaven.
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Not your average birdbath. Here's the step that had us thinking of pork cooked in milk.
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