Dear Dad: My Café Con Leche Will Never Be As Good As Yours

Growing up, Café con Leche played an important role in my daily life. I can’t recall the first time I had coffee, but I do remember I was very young. Drinking coffee became a daily part of my life and one that I could not bear to go without. 

I recall warm memories of my mother’s blurry figure in a dark bedroom, walking toward me, sweetly blowing air into a very hot café con leche (how her hand didn't burn from the boiling hot cup I'll never know!). Meanwhile, my father incorporated coffee into our daily life in such a way that not having coffee in the morning meant one of two things: either that something horrible had happened, or blood work needed to be done. 

Every day, I could count on my father working on his espresso. And I mean just that...“working.” He took it very seriously, and when he'd finish, just one sip of his café con leche would alert my senses immediately and prepare me for the day ahead.  

The kids in my school had nothing on me at 7:30 am after a shot of my dad's espresso! And what always stands out in my memory is how easy my father made this all look. His recipe? "Some Café Bustelo, an old Cafetera, some sugar and a spoon," he explained. Easy enough, right? Not quite...