Coffee 101

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Have you ever met someone that didn’t drink coffee?

Well, now you have.

coffee
coffee

I’ve never had a cup, never had a sip and try to hold my breath to run down the coffee aisle at the store to buy tea!

But that doesn’t mean that I don’t know people who do drink coffee. People that can’t start their day without the stuff. People that wouldn’t dream, nor realize, that while I might make the brew, they’ve never actually seen me partake…

So whether you’re a coffee lover or a novice you can still have questions about coffee. Do you have a favorite? Do you drink it because you like the taste? Do you drink it for the caffeine? Do you use dairy?

Beginners, people like me, should start with a softer blend. Perhaps a cappuccino or a latte. These are made with steamed milk and espresso and tend to be on the milder and sweeter side. These are good for folks that want the caffeine boost but not the strong overall flavor of coffee.

If you’re drinking coffee primarily for the caffeine boost you might consider an espresso as it’s made with beans ground fine. This means you get more out of the beans and therefore a stronger jolt.

Longer roasted coffee beans tend to have a lower caffeine count. The cheaper varieties of coffee found at the grocery store tend to have more caffeine as they aren’t roasted as long.

For those with a sweet tooth, and those not used to strong coffee might consider adding a creamer such as milk or cream, or a non-dairy creamer or a dollop of flavored syrup.

But it’s summertime. It’s hot out. How do those coffee drinkers take the heat? They could go with iced coffee.

But, did you realize (or so I’m told since I’ve never had any—- but I’m surrounded by coffee drinkers…) is that cold coffee has a different taste than hot coffee. To figure out if you’ll like iced coffee try taking a sip of your cooled down coffee. But if you’re still thinking about a cool drink you can try iced coffee.

To make an iced coffee you should begin with fresh beans. Use fresh ice (old ice can get stale). Brew you coffee and brew it strong. Brew it so strong that folks like me will want to leave the room…. lol… The reason behind brewing it strong is not to offend the tea drinkers but because the ice will dilute the mixture as it melts.

You can also consider trying cold brewing. Cold brewing decreases the acidity and lessens the scent filling the room which makes us ‘non-coffee drinkers’ happy. To make cold brew you mix your ground coffee in a quart jar with water, stir, put a lid on it, and refrigerate. You can then use a strainer to remove the coffee grounds (which you will of course save for the compost pile…). You can then drink it or dilute it with more water or ice.

Want to try something different?

You can mix in fruit, spices, extracts and even chocolate shavings. You can even cook with coffee

Don’t be afraid to mix it up. And while you’re thinking about it, add more coffee to your grocery list and put some back for ‘hard times’. Keep your coffee in an airtight container at room temperature. Coffee beans can be frozen but you’ll want to vacuum seal them to keep all air and moisture out.