According to lovers of the drink, autumn really starts when the Pumpkin Spice Latte is available again. What kind of drink is it, where do you buy it and how do you make it yourself?By Anne van Asseldonk
The popularity of the Pumpin Spice Latte (PSL) is clearly visible on social media. There are tons of videos about this fall drink on TikTok alone. In the fall, Starbucks customers worldwide use the hashtag #PSL on average in more than 3,000 tweets a day, the coffee chain calculated.
It was the American company that developed the drink in 2003. Four years later, PSL was on the map in the Netherlands. According to a spokesperson for the chain, it was an immediate success there. “Fans worldwide are counting down until the PSL is sold again. It really marks the change of the season for many.”
The pumpkin harvest time starts in September, says Betina Oostveen, founder of food blog Betty’s Kitchen. Hence, pumpkins are widely available around this time and symbolize autumn for many. “For me, Pumpkin Spice Latte is the ultimate autumn coffee drink. When I smell biscuit and gingerbread spices, I immediately think of a crackling fire and falling leaves. Those herbs are autumn in a jar to me.”
A classic version consists of steamed milk, coffee, pumpkin puree, sugar (syrup) and pumpkin spice herbs. There is often a dollop of whipped cream on top. “I add vanilla extract myself. Or you can take a little fresh marrow from a vanilla pod,” Oostveen tips. You can also add slices of fresh ginger, cinnamon sticks, or cardamom. Or allspice grains and cloves. With a tea infuser or herb strainer you prevent pieces from remaining in your drink.
Personalize your PSL
You can also make your PSL vegan or diet friendly to make. Oostveen: “I am lactose intolerant, so I take vegetable milk. I prefer to use vegetable milk that foams well, for example a barista version. I use this to make cappuccino foam in the frother. That way you don’t even need whipped cream.”
For the pumpkin puree, roast cubes of pumpkin flesh for twenty to thirty minutes in the oven (180 degrees, 165 degrees hot air). If you have leftover pumpkin puree, you can freeze it in an ice cube tray. You use those blocks for your next PSL. The ice cubes thaw automatically in the milk during preparation.
This is what you need for Pumpkin Spice Latte
- 200 milliliters (vegetable) milk
- 1-2 tbsp pumpkin puree
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin spice herbs (or gingerbread spices)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 freshly brewed (espresso) coffee (about 60 milliliters)
That’s how you make it
- Heat the milk, pumpkin puree, sugar and spices in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring the mixture just to a boil and then remove from the heat.
- Stir the vanilla into the mixture. Puree with an immersion blender until smooth (also to finely grind any lumps of pumpkin). You can immediately pour in the coffee, but you can also add it after step 3 and stir.
- Pour the Pumkin Spice Latte into a large mug and garnish with a dollop of whipped cream. Sprinkle with an extra pinch of pumpkin spice seasoning.
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