Coffee. A wonderfully simple, and at the same time complex, drink!
Did you know, coffee beans aren’t actually beans at all? They are the seeds of the cherry-like coffee fruit
Most of us don’t even see the coffee beans, we skip straight to the almost finished product. Beans that are roasted, ground and ready for brewing. But even at this stage there are so many different ways to prepare them.
While walking the dogs this morning I was thinking about my evolution as a coffee drinker.
Over the years I’ve gone through a wide range of how I take my coffee, starting out with instant. I’ve been through many brewing methods, and different sweet & milky combos. But at 40 I think I have now found the perfect preparation. I’ll get to that in a minute.
As a coffee lover I always scan for ‘news’ articles about whether coffee is actually good for you. The answer seems to depend on the writer, the day of the week and the alignment of the stars.
What follows is my opinion on the matter 🙂
Is Coffee Good For You?
There are lots of reports out there listing the health benefits of drinking coffee. I’m not going to list them all here, let’s just say there are lots of claims out there.
In 2015 the Social Media Machine kept sending me this article, over and over again. It’s about the benefits of coffee, by Professor Aaron E. Carroll
You can go ahead and check out his article for the sciency-bits, but here’s his summary.
“…it’s way past time that we stopped viewing coffee as something we all need to cut back on. It’s a completely reasonable addition to a healthy diet, with more potential benefits seen in research than almost any other beverage we’re consuming. It’s time we started treating it as such.”
The sceptics amongst you will say that studies claiming coffee has health benefits are probably funded by the coffee industry.
Yet earlier this year the International Agency for Research on Cancer concluded studies to determine that Coffee is not a carcinogen. So there does seem to be some agreement that it is, at least, not bad for you.
Professor Carroll does add a small note at the end of his article which I believe is key…..
Whether we define coffee as good or bad for you depends on the kind of coffee we’re talking about.
Coffee. Black. No sugar.
A double tall skinny vanilla latte has a whole heap of stuff going on….. it’s not the coffee that makes it bad for you!
[Sidebar: Not a coffee drinker? Earlier this year the high street cafe’s got a lot of bad press when it was revealed how much sugar is in some of their other drinks.]
The upshot of this? Coffee is……. possibly good for you, and probably not bad for you!
I think the far more important question is whether you like it or not!
If you don’t like it, then the potential health claims are not going to be strong enough to force it down. If you love it then crack on, it’s not bad for you, and if those health claims end up being true then it’s a bonus.
Coffee Brewing Methods
For the coffee fanatic there are several great brewing methods out there. I’m going to cover what I consider to be the top 3
- A bean to cup espresso coffee machine
- An aeropress
- A super simple filter coffee
Bean To Cup
Lovely shiny espresso machines. Pop beans in the top, fill the reservoir with water, push a button and voila! Espresso made from fresh ground beans. Add water for your americano, or milk for your latte, and you have a cafe style coffee in the comfort of your own home. The downside? These beauties cost from £200 to £500+ so you need to really love your coffee!
This is the new coffee gadget on the block. Pop your ground coffee in, top up with hot water, and the squeeze the water through using air. It works using the same principles as a fancy espresso machine, but it looks like the balloon pump you had as a kid. It does, however, make an awesome cup of coffee, and is almost foolproof to use. The price is great too, at just over £20 from your favourite online retailer.
The Super Simple Filter Coffee
I first came across this method in a little Viennese cafe not far from Durham. Until then, ‘filter coffee’ conjured up images of over-brewed pots of a bitter black liquid served up in dodgy diners.
The Hario V60 coffee funnel is the perfect way to brew a single mug of fresh filter coffee. It’s simple to use, is reassuringly low-tech and produces a wonderfully smooth cup of coffee.
My favourite thing about brewing this way? It is not the quickest method, and that’s what I like about it. You pore the water over the grounds slowly, and depending on the coarseness of the coffee grounds, it takes 2-5 minutes to prepare.
I love this aspect! I find the process almost meditative, and I feel like I have reclaimed the ‘coffee break!’
After all, once your coffee is made, most of the time it’s back to work and slurped between emails. The ‘break’ happens when you make the coffee, so why rush it?
If you would like to try brewing this way, check out the starter kit from PactCoffee
What about Nespresso?
Wait, what about Nespresso machines? George Clooney loves them, they must be great, eh? I, personally, don’t like them, as I don’t like all the waste created from the pods. However if George Clooney was making me a coffee I wouldn’t say no!
So in my forties, by favourite coffee is a perfectly poured filter coffee. Black, no sugar.
With one exception….. the Bullet Proof Coffee, or as I call it, Magic Coffee!
What is a Bullet Proof Coffee?
And why is is magic?
For me, I find the energy boost I get from a Bullet Proof Coffee far exceeds a normal cup of joe. That’s why I call it magic coffee 🙂 Also, it tastes bloomin great!
It is basically black coffee, blended with raw unsalted butter and coconut oil. These healthy fats work as a delivery mechanism for the caffein, giving a great kick with no shaky come-down.
So of you fancy a change from just black coffee, check out this video on how to go Bullet Proof!