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Dye your hair with coffee

by admin - March 6th, 2014

maintain-hair-color-coffeeIt comes a point in our lives, when we all have to dye our hair. We need to do this from various reasons – to choose a color that matches better our skin type, to just make a change, or eventually to cover the grey hair. What we also know is that dye is most of the times harmful to the hair and also to the entire body, due to the toxins that are absorbed through the skin. A hair that has been dyed several times until now can become dull; it loses its natural shine; the top of the hairs split; in conclusion, you can say that your hair is damaged. And if it only takes 30 minutes to dye your hair, well, it then takes long years to have it back as healthy as it used to be before. But because we still need to color out hair, we have dedicated this article to natural dyeing with coffee. It is true that what you will get it will be more like a darken hue, than a strong color, but it is still worth considering the alternative.

First of all, as a warning, you have to know that this process is messy, so stick to the bathroom and wear old clothes that you don’t care about.

Now, you need grounded coffee, olive oil, conditioner, a plastic bag, and an old towel.

The first step is to make the coffee – add one cup of water for every spoon of coffee (and make as much as you think you need, depending on your hair length). Then let it cool and while you wait, wash your hair using shampoo only. After the coffee has cooled, pour it into a big bowl. Because coffee will tend to dry your hair, it is best to add a couple of olive oil spoons – this will leave your hair soft and hydrated. As an optional ingredient, you can also add a cup of chamomile tea – this one will eliminate the strong smell of the coffee and will also contribute to the health of the hair. In the end, mix all ingredients and head to the bathroom.

Check out Prime Hair Tools for more tips on hair coloring and hair straightening treatments.

The easiest way to do this is to sink your hair into the bowl and make sure that all areas are being soaked in the mixture. After you have distributed the solution all over your head, wrap the plastic bag around your hair and tie it as not to let the hair fall down. Depending on how much you want to darken your hair, keep the coffee on between 1 hour and a half and 2 hours (or even more, if you can resist).

After this period, wash your hair again. Do it thoroughly, as to wash away all the coffee. If you consider that your hair may be dry, you can apply some hair conditioner too. Well, in the end blow dry your hair, as you always do, and done! Enjoy your new color!

You must know that this method does not offer you a permanent color – this will fade away every time you wash your hair. On the other hand, because it is all natural, you can repeat the process as often as once a week.

Also, the result depends on your natural hair color. The coffee dyeing works best with brown hair – it enriches its color and it makes it darker every time you dye it again.

Now you know how to dye your hair with coffee! You will see that this process is easy, cheap and completely natural.

Good luck and don’t hesitate to share the results!

Coffee and the fake Zeppole

by admin - February 27th, 2014

Zeppole, credit Florixc

There are very few things I enjoy more than a good cup of coffee (I think that’s pretty obvious from this site). But there is something extra special about having a sweet snack with the coffee. To have something maybe chewy, maybe sugar-coated before a warm sip of coffee that melts all the delicious chewy, sticky, sugary delightfulness away – mmm, there are few things I enjoy more.

Two of my favorite things to have are actually versions of fried bread. The first is the Zeppole, the other is a funnel cake.

I used to go out to get these once in awhile, but I actually broke down after reading some reviews over at FHQ (fryerhq.com) and got my very own deep fryer. I picked one of the smaller Presto units because I don’t need a lot of food and I don’t use it a lot.

Anyway, the point of this is that I can now make my very own sweet coffee companions.

The Fake Zeppole

The other day, in an attempt to make Zeppole, I stumbled upon something even great. It basically combined my two favorite things. The batter was a little bit wrong and did not give me the right consistency, so I ended up using a piping bag and piping the supposed Zeppole batter into sort of funnel cake shapes…almost funnel cakes, but not quite. So really we’re talking here about a mid way point between both of these things.

I was skeptical at first, and let the first one stay in for slightly too long. It was pretty good, but a bit crisp and perhaps a slight bit burnt. The ones after that, though, were light, fluffy, crisp, and delicious…I just kept making them exactly that same way because they were so good.

I covered them in a mixture of sugar and cinnamon and was in heaven as each bite was washed away with a warm sip of my delightful cup of coffee.

All you need to do to replicate my delicious mistake is make a really off-the-cuff batter. I think I got a few calculations wrong and it made my batter a bit too runny, so aim for a Zeppole recipe but add just a bit more wet ingredients.

Funnel cake! Credit DavidSandbrand

Remember to get your coffee brewing before all of this so that the coffee and sweet treats are equally as fresh as you sit and enjoy them.

Once the batter is ready, put it into a piping bag (if you don’t have one, you can easily put it into any sort of bag and cut the tip off of it…or use a spout or expert pouring skills to do this). Pipe a circular shape of batter directly into the hot oil of your favorite deep fry cooking unit. Start with the outer ring then get smaller as you move inwards, and you can zig zag a bit, they don’t have to be perfect.

Leave it in for just a couple of minutes, watching it the entire time to make sure you get the timing right, and then pull it out (safely, with a slotted spoon or the included basket, depending on your fryer). Leave it to cool briefly, then coat it in a sugar/cinnamon mix.

I have always been partial to a bit of cinnamon in my coffee, so this hint of it with the sweet treat was exquisite.

Sounds a bit weird and a bit vague, I know, but you seriously have to try it!

How Much Student Debt Can You Save Drinking Less Coffee?

by admin - January 26th, 2014

A college student is expected to do a lot of tasks and some students resort to drinking coffee in order to finish these school-related tasks. When I went to school I know I relied on coffee for me to get through my studies! Although quite insignificant when bought one at a time, the accumulated cost of drinking coffee can be surprising and shocking.

In college, students are sometimes given an insurmountable amount of homework and other school requirements. In order to get through these tasks, college students resort to drinking energy drinks or coffee, often spending a dollar or two on branded coffee. While this amount is somehow negligible in the small scale, the accumulated cost of drinking coffee turns out to be quite a significant expenditure, especially for students on student loan.

 

6-Save-Money-in-College-Drink-Less-Coffee

Photo Credit

The Cost of Drinking Coffee

Coffee is helpful in keeping an individual awake and alert. For college students with a great amount of requirements, drinking coffee helps them finish these tasks in a timely manner. Oftentimes, instant coffee works well with students already. However, to pull all-nighters, students resort to drinking designer and branded coffee such as Starbucks(see how Starbucks Capitalizes on College Age Consumers). On the small scale and computed in the short run, the cost of these designer coffees may not amount to much. Spending $4 for a cup of coffee to help finish a paper may seem reasonable. However, when computed in the long run, the accumulated cost of a regular coffee habit can be surprising. In the span of a year, you may have spent thousands of dollars in sustaining a coffee habit.

How Much Money Do You Spend on Coffee?

If you drink a cup of branded coffee daily, you spend $4 a day, on average, on your daily fix of caffeine. In a week, you spend around $30 on coffee. On average, a college student usually has an allowance of $50 a week. Maintaining an expensive coffee habit at this rate is impossible and at the same time not advisable. While coffee is helpful in finishing requirements, it will be unwise to maintain a coffee habit like so. In the long run, spending $30/week on coffee will lead to a yearly expense of $1500 on coffee alone. This amount alone can help greatly in paying interest of a student loan. Moreover, this amount of money can be spent on more significant and more useful college tools such as textbooks, groceries and even a new laptop. At the cost of $1500 a year, a student can buy the required textbooks for a year or sustain a healthy grocery option for the entire year. In addition, $1500 can already buy some of the most expensive computers and laptops in the market, allowing a student to have access to this advanced technology.

How to Save Money?


5 ways to save money and pay back student loans faster!

Indeed, drinking coffee helps in productivity but there are other options than having to drink designer brands. Brewing your own coffee can save a great deal of money. Buying coffee beans and other raw products to make your coffee from the grocery can help you save up to $100 while sustaining your coffee habit. Indeed, there are ways which you can save money and instead allot it to more pertinent things such as paying for your student loan. With these ways of saving money, you still get to enjoy these mini luxuries such as sustaining your coffee habit.

Coffees of The World

by admin - January 8th, 2014

Espresso

Coffee is cultivated in all parts of the world from the sandy lowlands outside Charleston, California to the rugged Himalayan Mountains in India. Similarly, there are only few people across the globe who begin their day without a cup of hot coffee. All the varieties of coffee offer

different tastes and therefore, travelers should be willing and ready to accept all the flavors they encounter on the road. In fact, enjoying different varieties of coffee while traveling is as necessary as taking a best travel pillow with you if youwant to maximize the pleasures of your sojourn.

Travellers can actually come across innumerable and unpredictable versions of coffee across the globe. Following lines explain some of the regional interpretations of this extremely popular drink.

United States:

The ink black juice of espresso machine has become an irresistible taste for Americans. However, the legendary ominously tea-coloured and brewed “gas station coffee” is still an indispensible part of American culture. Furthermore, high calories coffees introduced by Starbucks are also gaining popularity in United States. These varieties usually contain caramel, espresso, eggnog, chocolate, whipped cream and other ingredients.

Italy:

Although coffee is native to Africa but nobody does coffee better than Italians. It is actually the birthplace of espresso machine and considered as the lord of coffee world. As a matter of fact, Italy has become analogous to espresso and you can find this drink everywhere whether you enter into unknown café in remote parts of Italy or five star hotels in Milan and Rome. Italy is also a wonderful tourist destination and therefore, visiting sensational places in Italy coupled with traditional Italian coffee will definitely manifold the pleasures.  You just need to take a best travel pillow alongside as it sometimes becomes difficult to sleep on strange beds and pillows.

Coffee BeansGreece:

Frappe is the favourite version of coffee in Greece. A frappe is actually a fermented mixture of sugar, milk and Nescafé and served over ice.  It is actually the ice that make this drink delicious while you are enjoying a hot summer day on Greece islands. The frappe can be taken with or without sugar and this is perhaps one of very few versions of instant coffee that cannot be hated.

Turkey:

Although, coffee is available in Turkey yet their favourite morning drink is chai, a local version of tea. Various versions and associated lattes of cappuccinos and espresso are very common in modern cities like Istanbul whereas Nescafé rules in countryside. Then there is traditional and true Turkish coffee with the ability to surprise you because it is very hard. You also need to note that the “Greece coffee”, “Turkish Coffee” and “Georgian Coffee” are the same version of coffee with different names. It is almost always served with sugar and takes the form of gritty, thick, tar-black juice.

Ethiopia:

People in Ethiopia have been enjoying taking coffee for more than a millennium now. It is the true heart of coffee world and native place of world’s most favourite drink. The traditional coffee, the buna is still popular and usually prepared in front of guests. The raw red beans are converted into a hot and steamy drink over a period of one hour to prepare this delicious coffee.

Vietnam:

Vietnam is not only a beautiful country to visit, but it also produces a delicious version of coffee. The traditional Vietnamese coffee is sweet and extremely delightful. French introduced coffee in 1800s a

nd locals were very quick to introduce their own versions. The Vietnamese usually serve the coffee over ice after pouring it over condensed and sweetened milk from cans.

Abovementioned are some of the varieties of coffees popular in different countries. No matter which part of the world you are traveling in, you will come across a local version of coffee and to be honest, all of them are delicious and adorable.

Health Benefits of Coffee

by admin - December 31st, 2013

There are a lot of myths out there today about coffee and about how horrible it can be on your body. Many people seem to blame Coffee for developing stress, irritability, anxiety, and heart problems. What most people don’t realize is that many of these conditions were probably already prevalent prior to anyone actually picking up a cup of Joe. What many people in today’s health conscious society don’t realize is that there are many health benefits of coffee that people don’t publicize because of the booming healthcare industry and how much money is made in medication and non-home remedies.
Coffee has become an effective tool in boosting your immune system and recent studies have shown that coffee has a host of benefits including protection against Parkinson’s disease, diabetes and liver cancer. It also has a high content of antioxidants which help boost your immune system and help prevent the likelihood that you might contract some type of random illness including the common cold. It’s important to highlight that anything that modifies your chemical balance, should absolutely be consumed in moderation. Drinking coffee in large doses can have some rather poor health effects, especially in conjunction with a poor diet. As with any fitness supplement, you need to make sure you are eating properly and watching any type of coffee intake and make sure to keep it to 1-2 cups a day for maximum effectiveness.
Another thing that’s of important note is the fact that coffee taken black will allow you to minimize calories and help keep you fit. Coffee doesn’t have any of the natural sugar that orange juice or apple juice carry and in a caloric restrictive diet, coffee can really help you maintain a fit physique. Many bodybuilders and fitness experts start off their day with a cup of coffee when they are restricting carbohydrates – the exact opposite of what they do when they are taking weight gainers to beef up in the off season when they aren’t competing. Fitness experts use the thermogenic properties of coffee to help burn fat effectively and get into competition shape. If done appropriately with a caloric and carbohydrate restrictive diet, coffee can help you drop fat extremely quickly and get into top level shape.

Coffee

Why Coffee Should Be Part of Your Everyday Routine:

Now that we’ve covered the health benefits of coffee – let’s talk about the main reason you should be drinking it over everything else. Longevity. According to a recent study, coffee drinkers will not only have the health benefits we’ve already covered, but they may live longer! Who doesn’t want to extend their lifespan?
This study covered a 13 year time frame and basically showed that people that consume coffee in moderation had a lower risk of death than others, no matter if they chose decaffeinated coffee or regular strength. This just goes to show that coffee beans carry nutrients that many other foods do not and even if you are adverse to drinking caffeine, you should take a look at picking up some Decaf at your local Starbucks so you can reap the health benefits.

Tea or Coffee?

by admin - December 26th, 2013

Most of us can be an avid coffee drinker while others are tea lover. The world can be divided into two types, tea drinker and coffee drinker. While both of them have almost the same use, a hot, steaming drink in the morning or afternoon, there is a never-ending debate about which one of them is healthier and better. However, latest research revealed that both of them could be good for you, in different ways.

The first thing that we can notice is that tea seems to be more popular than coffee as in 2007 sales in United Kingdom, tea sold £550,113, while coffee only sold £270,366. However, that doesn’t conclude that tea is better in coffee. There’s a face-off and it’s up to you to determine who wins or who lose.

Coffee contains higher amount of caffeine per cup, where a brewed coffee contains 150 mg per serving, black tea contains only 65 mg of caffeine.

Coffee

Studies revealed that drinking coffee could prevent type 2 diabetes. It is also revealed that a man over 40 who consumes coffee has a decreased risk of Gout. It also protects the liver against cirrhosis and cancer and those who drinks coffee regularly is less likely to suffer from Alzheimer’s disease. It is also said that you’re going to have a reduced risk of dying from heart disease.

In addition to that, scientists believe that those chemicals found in coffee could be used to create new drugs that can cure insomnia and heart diseases. However, there are 1000 chemicals found in roasted coffee contains carcinogens. There are also studies that revealed that coffee decreases blood flow to the heart and it may cause tooth discoloration.

 

Coffee or Tea?

Coffee or Tea?

Tea

There are studies that revealed tea might help prevent type 1 diabetes and it has the ability to slow it down when it develops. When you drink three to four cups of tea a day, you will have lesser chance of heart attack. It also contains fluoride, which is better for the teeth. In addition to those, tea hydrates the body, which is in contrary to dehydration because of its caffeine content.

However, tea may contain pesticides, especially those that aren’t labeled properly. And we know that it contains caffeine, which was proven to increase blood pressure and promote anxiety. It can also lead to anemia due to its high tannin content.

We can see that tea and coffee has their own downsides and upsides. Both can be better for our health, just don’t do it too much.

Soy Milk versus Almond Milk

by admin - December 21st, 2013
Milk

Goat Milk, Soy Milk, Almond Milk, Milk Milk?

Milk is one of the most nutritious drinks; however, not all of us can have it. As a coffee drinker initially the news was devastating. Since I was told to stay clear from Milk I’ve tried Almond Milk and Soy Milk.

There are certain limitations such as those people who are lactose intolerant, diabetic or allergic to dairy milk. But there are other alternatives to it, which is as good as the dairy milk such as the almond milk and the soymilk, the most popular dairy alternative.

Almond milk and soymilk are the two popular substitute to dairy milk since the middle ages. They are both recommended for people suffering from lactose intolerance, diabetes, casein allergies, and heart disease. There have been an ageless battle between these two milk products, many debates and studies have been conducted comparing the effectiveness of the two. In general, depending upon your dietary needs or physical fitness goals, one can be advantageous of the other; they have their own upsides and downsides.

The Similarities

At a glance, their nutritional values are almost the same, making it hard to one choose from them. Both of them don’t have cholesterol and trans fat. Both of them offer the same amount of vitamin A containing 10%, vitamin C containing 0%, calcium containing 45% and vitamin B12 containing 50%.

Both of them contain low carb content; however, most of the carb content comes from sugars. Each also has 1 gram of fiber per cup serving.

Though these two looks almost identical, there are differences too.

The Differences

From the same amount of soymilk and almond milk as above, there are differences. Soymilk has 90 calories; 30 calories came from fat; almond milk on the other hand contains less, with only 30 calories of which 25 came from fat. Almond milk contains a gram less of total fat, a quarter of polyunsaturated fat but 50% more monounsaturated fat.

The protein content also varies between these two popular milk alternatives. Almond milk usually has less than a gram of protein while soymilk can have more than 5 grams. In addition, Almond milk does have some nutrients, which are not present in soymilk. Soymilk doesn’t have phosphorus, while almond milk has about 6% of daily-recommended servings; it has also high levels of vitamin E, whereas soymilk doesn’t have. In contrast, soymilk does have more vitamin B due to its high protein content.

Which is Much Better?

Almond milk comes from almonds while soymilk comes from soy, that’s a no brainer. Therefore, the first thing that we need to consider is that are you allergic to the one or another. If you are allergic to soy, then go to almond milk, but if you are allergic to almond, then get soymilk.

If you were over 50 years old, then I would recommend that you get soymilk due to its capabilities. The most common attributes of soymilk is relieving postmenopausal symptoms for women and preventing prostate cancer in men. However, it might cause certain negative effects for people who are still in their reproductive years. One of the alleged side effects of soymilk is that it reduces male fertility and sperm count. If you were to bear a child, it is also recommended that you avoid taking soymilk due to its known interference with progesterone development during pregnancy.

Bullet-Proof Coffee

by admin - December 13th, 2013

Dave Asprey & Bulletproof Coffee

Dave Asprey is the founder of The Bulletproof Executive and later Bulletproof Coffee. To say the guy has an incredible track record would be a terrible understatement. He’s a silicon valley guy, and from what I hear guys successful in that area of the world are usually really smart.

He reportedly spent $300,000 unlocking his biology. I don’t know what that means, but I do know it’s a lot of money and since then he’s begun building a brand. A brand which has seen celebrities and athletes a like take to “Bullet Proof Coffee”.

The LA Lakers have employed Dr. Cate Shanahan to overhaul their diets. It’s all outlined in this article and it’s pretty compelling stuff. She talks in depth about how Dwight Howard was addicted to sugar to the point where his motor skills fell off. (Maybe that’s why he had such a terrible year?).

An excerpt from that article “Not only are the Lakers unafraid of healthy fats, they practically freebase them. The pregame beverage of choice is something the players call “bullet-proof coffee” — coffee seasoned with two teaspoons of pastured butter and heavy, grass-fed cream.”

And make no mistake it’s not just the Laker’s who are interested in the secret sauce (hint it’s not that secretive at all). I think Dave is onto something here.

So What Is BulletProof Coffee?

Bulletproof coffee is the brand name, it’s supposedly the finest (nutritionally speaking here) coffee in the world. Some folks focus on the taste of the coffee, Dave was interested in the health benefits and toxins found in coffee. With this he spent ten years sourcing the healthiest coffee bean in the world.

So that’s it?

Well not exactly. To make BulletProof the recipe goes something like this.

Bulletproof Coffee (I know, we’re making bulletproof coffee with the brand bulletproof coffee. It’s either ingenious marketing or the silliest thing I’ve come across. I haven’t decided yet).

Bulletproof Brain Octane. This is essentially MCT Oil. MCT oil stands for medium-chain triglyceride. It basically boosts energy over the long haul by releasing slower.

Grassfed Unsalted Butter

Once you’ve got all the ingredients and the coffee is brewed you throw everything in a blender and blend it all up. It honestly creates the world’s best coffee. Personally I drink LULORA coffee. It’s a spinoff of Bulletproof Coffee that doesn’t require bulletproof coffee beans and I use coconut oil instead of grass fed butter.

The idea behind it is a healthier coffee. I like to think of the energy being drip fed into my body as opposed to it being dumped on all at once only to crash twenty minutes later. I personally like the taste better and I feel better as a result.

Give it a try, you won’t regret it.

 

 

Coffee, Caffeine & Sleep

by admin - November 14th, 2013

Coffee & Caffeine

If you’re like 54% of Americans, one of the first things you do every day is get a coffee, or a latte, or an espresso. Some people can’t even function in the mornings without their cup of joe. Americans spend $18 billion a year on coffee. There’s nothing quite like the caffeine in coffee to give you that jolt you need in the morning so you can be alert and responsive. Caffeine has become an integral component of our modern lives. And coffee is just barely scratching the surface. Americans also drink over 13 billion gallons of soft drinks every year, which contain large amounts of caffeine and sugar. Caffeine is a pretty big deal, and it’s also one of the biggest roadblocks to getting a good night’s sleep.

More than 30% of the population suffers from insomnia. There are over 10 million people in the US alone who use sleep aids, like pills or binaural beats to try and solve this problem.  And in most cases, this is treating the symptoms of the problem, and not the problem itself. What people fail to realize about the caffeine that wakes them up in the morning, is that that very same caffeine is in large part responsible for keeping them from sleeping.

What happens when you drink a cup of coffee or a soda is that it makes its way into your stomach, is absorbed into your bloodstream somewhere between there and the small intestine, and begins stimulating your central nervous system within 15 minutes. Now, this heightened state of alertness keeps your brain from shutting down and going back to sleep. It also elevates your heart rate, raises your body temperature, and increases your blood flow. All of this is well and good when you have to get that report done by lunchtime, but the downside is that after the initial boost, which your  body gets used to, it takes your body over six hours to to eliminate half of that caffeine. Not the whole amount, just half of it. Caffeine can stay in your body for over eight hours.

So, after drinking coffee and soda all day, most people go to bed with all this caffeine still floating around in their system, which causes them to be unable to get a good sleep, or even possibly develop sleep apnea, and then wake up the next day feeling tired and groggy, needing even more caffeine to give themselves a head start on the day. One thing I changed recently, was instead of downing 2 or 3 or sometimes even 4 cups of coffee in the morning I swapped one or two of those cups out for a Green Smoothie. It’s done wonders, it provides a nice burst of energy and I’m not depriving my body of essential nutrients.

You can avoid these negative side effects and improve the quality of your sleep by following these simple tips:

  • Don’t drink coffee for eight hours before you go to bed
  • Don’t drink more than 400mg of caffeine in a day (that’s about four 8oz. cups of coffee)
  • Drink lots of water a couple of hours before bedtime to help flush your system

So if you’ve been having problems sleeping, then try making these changes for one week and see if your sleep improves.

Coffee: A world of roasts

by admin - November 12th, 2013

Most of us are grinding coffee beans ourselves but only few are actually roasting them from scratch. It could take years of training and experience in order to be a good roaster, and the difference between a perfect quality roast and one that completely goes straight to the trashcan is only a matter of split seconds. Therefore, you may not really want to plan roasting coffee beans yourself, unless you are planning to sell one. However, does that mean you don’t need to know the difference and types of coffee roasting? No, and being able to understand and know these differences can help you in choosing the best coffee beans to brew.

Roasts

The Roasts

There are four major types of roasting names in the market, but there is still no formal or standardized naming implemented, and this can lead to consumer confusion. The four major types are named depending on their color change from the original bean, which are light, medium, full roast and double roast. Lighter roasts are sharper and more acidic than darker ones, but the latter have a fuller flavor and less caffeine. Over roasted beans will have smoky or charcoal flavor. However, the roast alone isn’t enough to judge the out coming quality; you must also consider the bean source.

Light Roasts

They are light brown in color and it is generally preferred for milder coffee varieties. There is no oil present on the bean surface because the roasting time is not enough for these oils to break to the surface. The have a lighter bodied flavor, higher acidity, and no obvious roast flavor.

  • Light City
  • Half City
  • Cinnamon Roast
  • New England

Medium Roast

They are medium brown in color with a stronger flavor and still no oil present on the surface. This roast is often referred to as the American roast because US folks generally prefer it. It is sweeter than light roast, more body exhibiting, more balanced acidic levels, better aroma and complexity.

  • City
  • American
  • Breakfast
  • Brown

Full Roast or Medium-Dark Roast

They are rich, dark colored with some oil on the surface, which makes them shiny. They have a slight bittersweet aftertaste. The aroma and flavor of roasting becomes more evident than the other two. They can be somewhat spicy and complexity is traded for heavier mouth and body feeling.

  • Full City
  • High
  • Viennese
  • Continental

Double or Dark Roasts

They are shiny and black beans, and a noticeable oily surface. They have lesser acidity, in fact the darker the color, the lesser the acidity level. Dark roast coffees vary from slightly dark to charred and their names are often interchangeably used, even with the latter (full roast/medium-dark roast) which can be very confusing. They are Smokey-sweet, light bodied but quite intense.

  • High
  • Continental
  • New Orleans
  • European
  • Espresso
  • Viennese
  • Italian
  • French

These names are often interchangeably used, but knowing the bean appearance can be of great difference. Enjoy your coffee!

Espresso Machine Basics

by admin - November 7th, 2013

Fundamentally espresso machines have a simple concept and a singular purpose. Heat water to just below 100C and push it through a puck of ground coffee at a certain pressure. Any more then 10 BARS of pressure is usually hype and should be ignored as that.

The tricky part is purchasing an espresso machine which consistently produces the same results. From experience, I can tell you that you likely won’t find that feature in any of the cheaper models. If you’re looking at buying an espresso machine, you’ll need to consider which type of machine you’re looking for (they’re classified by how they produce the heat and the pressure), life of ownership or whether your want a manual, automatic or semi automatic espresso machine. It’s a lot to consider!

Types of Espresso Machines

Heating Methods

Single Boiler Machines are going to be the cheapest of the bunch. They have one boiler and two thermostats. One which controls the temperature of the water and the other which controls steaming the milk. These will be the cheap machines you find on amazon and will run up to $900-$1000 dollars.

Heat Exchanges: This type of machine makes use of a heat exchange, which allows you to steam and brew at the same time. The issue here is the temperature consistency. These start at around $1000.

Dual Boiler Machines: You guessed it, this contains two boilers which allow you to steam and brew at the same time. Since the boilers are separate you’ll have more precise temperatures, for a more precise espresso.

Manual, Semi Automatic or Automatic

Manual machines can produce some of the best espresso shots in the right hands and the absolute worst espresso shots in the wrong hands. The operator has a lot of control over the process, which leads to some highly inconsistent espresso shots. The manual espresso machines fall into two camps; direct lever machines and spring piston lever machines

Manual Espresso Machine

Manual Espresso Machine

Semi Automatic Machines are the type of machines you’ll generally see. Semi automatic machines give you control over how long to leave the pump on. That is on, how water flows.

Automatic Machines are fully automatic and take all of the brewing out of the operators hands.

What To Look For In A Good Espresso Machine

Pay close attention to how complex a machine is. Will it be easy to use and easy to clean?  You’re probably thinking of course, but you’d be surprised. I always look for a clean design, such as this Saeco Aroma

Brewing espresso is somewhat of an art and if a machine is lacking a clean design everything else has usually be brushed over as well. This leads to an inferior espresso shot.

Raw Green Coffee Beans

by admin - October 29th, 2013

Raw Green Coffee Beans

Green coffee beans are the un-roasted version of coffee beans we use for creating our favorite morning cup of coffee. This is the purest and rawest form of a coffee bean. Lots of news is arising about raw green coffee beans, particularly about its potential impacts on weight loss. Some experts doubt its effectiveness, but small-scale studies have been conducted and all of them have yielded positive results.

The Health Benefits of Raw Green Coffee Beans

One advantage of raw green coffee beans over regular coffee beans is that it has higher levels of chlorogenic acid, which is lost when the bean is roasted. Roasted beans do have higher levels of antioxidants, but they lose out with regards to chlorogenic acids, which is beneficial in weight loss.

In 2012, a study was conducted with 16 participants. They consumed either 1050 mg or 700 mg dose and they lost 16-pounds within six weeks compared to a placebo group. Another independent analysis from randomized clinics that includes 142 participants concluded that it has moderate effects, but the study was poorly conducted. The studies were too small, so the results are not reliable. However, it seems that green coffee beans do have some positive effects to provide to us.

Green coffee beans also have the ability to reduce high blood pressure. In 2005 from a study published in the journal “Hypertensions Research”, male volunteers were given various doses of raw green coffee bean extract. The results were promising as it showed significant reductions in both diastolic and systolic blood pressure. The participants took either 46 mg, 93 mg or 185 mg extract once a day within 28 days. Inn 2007, a similar study revealed that green coffee is superior to roasted coffee in reducing blood pressure due to its low hydroxyhydroquinone content, which is a by-product of roasting.

Type 2 diabetes patients may also find green coffee bean to be beneficial. The chlorogenic acid found in the bean, which helps in fat loss, may also help alleviate people suffering from diabetes type 2. The chlorogenic acid is known to increase glucose absorption.

The Rise of the Green Coffee Bean

It became very popular, especially for weight loss, when it was featured on the Doctor Oz show in 2012. The show stated it as “the green coffee bean that burns fat fast” with no diet or exercise required or needed. And while this clearly is an exaggeration, the fact remains there is no magic pill for getting fit or losing weight; it should be noted that a number of studies have suggested that green coffee extract is beneficial for weight loss.

Where to Buy

For Green Coffee you can either buy it in a capsule, or as raw green beans. I prefer the raw form, but if you don’t have a high quality blender or grinder trying to chew up green coffee is a surefire way to blow your cheap grinders motor. A solid Burr Grinder does the trick.

My favorite brand of raw green coffee is Brazil Santos

For capsules I recommend nutri-gold.