A classic or “dry” cappuccino consists of just freshly pulled espresso topped only with the foam from your milk, no other milk involved. Watch Gail craft one for us.
We ran across this recipe today and think it’s going to make a great addition to our summer menu! The flavors of coffee and oregano are a unique pairing that we can’t wait to try out. Generally, recipes using instant coffee don’t make it on our to-do list, but this one looked too tasty to pass up. If you take this recipe on, let us know what you think.
- 4 zucchini
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 shallots, finely chopped
- 100g basmati rice, washed and drained
- 1/2 chicken stock cube
- 2 tsp instant coffee granules
- 1 tsp fresh, chopped oregano, plus extra for sprinkling
- 70g goats’ cheese
- Olive oil, for drizzling
Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the zucchini and cook for 7 minutes. Remove from the pan, allow to cool, halve lengthwise, then scoop out the pulp using a spoon, without breaking the skin, to leave a shell. Set the shells and the flesh aside.
Melt the butter in a deep non-stick frying pan, add the shallots and fry until golden. Add the drained rice and stir well. Add 240ml water, the stock cube half, coffee granules and oregano. Bring to boil, then cook, covered, on a very low heat for about 7 minutes, or until the water has absorbed and the rice is cooked. Season with a little salt and set aside to cool.
Remove the rice from the pan and use the same pan for the zucchini. Don’t add any oil, just put in the zucchini shells, skin-side down, and dry-fry, still over a very low heat, for a couple of minutes to brown a little. Remove and set aside on foil on a grill pan. Now add the zucchini flesh to the pan and fry for about a minute and a half, stirring all the while, until it feels like the liquid has evaporated. Turn off the heat, add the rice and stir well.
Preheat the grill to hot.
Spoon the mixture into the zucchini skins. Top each with some crumbled goats cheese, sprinkle over a touch more oregano and a drizzle of olive oil. Place under the hot grill for about 8 minutes or until the cheese is browned.
Try the rice alone or with some chicken or fish; grilled salmon would be particularly good. Perhaps try stuffing mushrooms instead.
Source: Guardian UK
We headed out on the road in the beautiful afternoon sunshine yesterday and took a field trip up north to Velton’s roastery, located in Everett, WA. Watch as Velton talks about his history and roasting theory and then takes us through the roasting process from green bean to bag. Yum!
Part One: Velton’s History & Roasting Theory
Part Two: From Green Bean to First Crack
Part Three: From Second Crack to Bag
We like to think of ourselves as equal opportunity imbibers — coffee, beer, wine, cocktails, juices, smoothies, water…and even tea. Of course. Tea, for us, is pretty simplistic: We have a deep and loving relationship with genmaicha, but we’re willing to take a new tea out on a stroll every now and again. That’s just how we roll.
Enter Dammann Teas, the fresh and potent legacy of two French brothers who wanted to do tea and wanted to do it right. Available in both loose leaf and sachet, we can’t seem to get enough of the 4 Fruit Rouges or the L’Oriental — both are rich and complex, very delicious and a wonderful afternoon treat.
If you dig teas, definitely give these a try — we think you’ll love them!
Arizona State Univeristy’s International Institute for Species Exploration released their 2009 top 10 new species, including a new strain of the coffee plant that is naturally caffeine-free.
Dubbed Coffea charrieriana, this wild species was found in the diverse growing region of Cameroon and will likely be experimented with to determine if a palatable, naturally-caffeine free brew can be made from its cherries.
Given that caffeine is considered to be the primary pest-repellent in coffee plants the world over, it’s quite impressive that this little guy has developed in the wild. Caffeine is also responsible for much of the bitter flavor in coffee, and species such as Robusta, which have significantly higher caffeine quantities than Arabica species, are known to be less palatable and more harsh to the taste. Perhaps this new species will produce a coffee that is smoother and better suited to tasting the full spectrum of flavor inherent to this little bean.
It’s true, the thermometer hits about 65F in Seattle and everyone starts to strip. We also start sipping on the frozen drinks as if we’re swimming up to the side of a Acapulcan pool bar. One of our favorites in the coffee realm is the Cafe Sheccerato, which is a pretty simple drink that has the potential to be basically whatever your tastes desire.
We pull a couple of long espresso shots (run it for about 45 seconds) and then poor it over a full glass of ice. We love throwing in a little mint sometimes to add to the refreshment, but if you pull the shots just right and they’re nice and sweet, adding anything isn’t necessary at all. The shots will melt the ice a bit and it’s quite delicious. You can also combine the two in a martini shaker and shake them up to put a frothy spin on it if you’d like. Whichever way you do it, we think the Cafe Sheccerato tastes like summer.
We’ve found that we generally prefer medium roasted coffees because we’re able to taste a more diverse palette of flavors in a specific coffee blend. However, we know that there are die-hard devotees of dark roasted coffee and we were recently asked what the difference was between French Roast and Italian Roast.
They’re both roasted quite darkly, so that they have an oily sheen to them after the roasting process is complete. With a French Roast, the temperature of the roast is high enough that these oils are brought to the surface and will impart a roasted flavor to the produced coffee or espresso. Aromas can vary from berry to citrus. Italian Roast is much darker and oilier than a French Roast and often preferred in Italy.
If a coffee is described as being a French or Italian roast, it isn’t because they were grown or roasted in these countries, just that the roaster utilized this generalized roast level for that blend of beans. You can read more about roasting in our article It Starts with Great Coffee.
What is your preferred roast or blend and why? We’d love to hear about some of your favorites!
Following in the tasty footsteps of the flank steak marinade we wrote about a few months ago, this rub recipe is a great inspiration for your summer grilling parties.
Serves: 4 (generously)
Preparation time: 30 minutes (including meat standing time)
Total time: 40 minutes
- 2 teaspoons cumin seed, toasted
- 2 tablespoons dark-roast coffee or espresso beans
- 1 tablespoon ground ancho chile pepper
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 4 rib-eye steaks, each about 8 ounces and 1-inch thick
- Extra-virgin olive oil
In a spice mill, pulse the cumin seed and coffee beans until finely ground. Transfer to a small bowl, add the remaining rub ingredients and stir to combine.
Lightly brush the steaks with oil and season evenly with the rub, pressing the rub into the meat. Cover and let stand at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes before grilling.
Prepare the grill for direct cooking over high heat.
Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the steaks over direct high heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until cooked to your desired doneness, 6 to 8 minutes for medium-rare, turning once. (If flare-ups occur, move the steaks temporarily to indirect high heat.) Remove from the grill and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes. Serve warm.
Recipe: Detroit Free Press
As the national obsession with greening our lives grows, examining how the things we love impact the environment has become a common topic of discussion. Up now: How green are different coffee beans?
The folks over at Greenopia devised a Leaf Awards rating system that is used to evaluate a coffee company’s overall greenness by gauging its percentage of organic, ethically sourced, naturally decaffeinated, eco-friendly packaged and efficiently produced and transported beans. They also looked for sustainability and environmental impact reporting. They then assessed 25 different brands from all over the US to determine how they measure up.
We can’t help but feel the findings a bit disheartening: Of the brands they evaluated, nearly half of them didn’t rank at all! Coffee that we love by the likes of Illy or Lavazza didn’t get a single leaf, while large American brands like Starbucks or Stumptown got just a couple of leaves.
One ranking that shined was Bellevue-based Kalani Organica, coming in at 3 leaves! We have a personal connection to this truly lovely coffee: In the mid-to-late ’90’s, we cut our barista teeth slinging java at the Speakeasy Cafe in Seattle’s Belltown district. The cafe was a devout supporter and server of Kalani Organica until the cafe was closed by a fire in 2002 — despite the fact that we regularly had small competitive roasters try to convince us to switch. We stuck with Kalani because of the founder Karen’s commitment to organic, ethically-sourced coffee — something that is talked about a lot these days but wasn’t seen as particularly important 15 years ago. We’re thrilled that her work is getting recognized and hope that a rating like this will help expand Kalani’s availability around the country.