I was making coffee the other morning and thought that I might show y'all the beautiful coffee grinder that Wonder Sweetie made for me.
It is mostly cast iron with a guamanian ironwood (whatever that is) base. You cannot see the details very well, but the wood is very pretty--good grain with speckles.
The part of the grinder with the pretty flower on it pivots and you place the beans in there. A few turns of the crank and .....
VOILA! Ground coffee! Wonder Sweetie actually buys green coffee beans and roasts his own, but he and I have different coffee tastes. I like mine medium roast, and he wants to be able to be able to taste char ;). Really, when what you brews smells like "grill" instead of "coffee", then you KNOW that the coffee is going to be strong and probably bitter. :)
I got into coffee late, which is surprising considering my family. I do not know if it is a Louisiana thing entirely, or just a region of Louisiana, but our family drinks a tremendous amount of coffee. We drink it morning, noon, and night. If someone calls to come over, we say "I'll put a pot on.". Or they might not ask to be invited, but say something like "Make sure the coffee is ready." hee hee! I love that.
Our family never really seems to get too jittery with coffee (I have on occasion, but not often). If I make instant (ew) or use the carafe, I use french onion soup bowls as my coffee mug. My favorite coffee is black with a fair bit of sugar :). It is like a dessert to me.!
Anyway, when I was a wee bairn, I got a hold of my mother's coffee cup that only had some grounds and about a tsp of cold coffee in the bottom and downed it. EEWWWW!!!! I was VERY VERY young, but I can see that whole moment clearly in my head. I think it is probably my earliest memory.
So I did not touch coffee until I was about 30. Then we moved to Alaska. Now, when I say that people here are bonkers for coffee, I do not think I can adequately convey the DEPTH of their bonker-ocity. Here they have little shacks (that generally do not even have running water) that they sell coffee out of. And they have them EVERYWHERE. You cannot swing a soggy teabag without hitting one. There are at least three in two miles just from my house and I do not live in a highly populated place. If you are lost in the tundra, hours away from the nearst town, somewhere a satellite phone will not even work, just look for a coffee hut--chances are you are only a stones throw away. They are manned by adorable young women with big eyes, open smiles, and infinite patience for those of us who have trouble remembering if we liked whipped cream or not in our mocha. I had one girl even put together a special type of mocha for Precious.
Oh, yes, that is right. Precious will enjoy a bit of coffee. Again, down in La, they have "cafe au lait" that they sometimes give to the children, so we occasionally give her a bit of mocha, just to keep a bit of Louisiana with us, especially when we have beignets. :)
(honestly, I think the people here are so crazy for coffee because not enough of us have auto start on our cars....so we buy or bring coffee on the way to town to keep us alive until the heater kicks in!)
Wonder Sweetie, who is a man with an eye for gadgets, found these press mugs for us. We also have a pot made by this same company. I use mine every day and love it!
Chicory is an additive to coffee, especially in Louisiana. Cafe du Monde (one of the tourist hot spots for beignets) sells coffee with chicory. It's pretty good, try some.
The part of chicory used in coffee (either as an additive or a substitute) is the root. You can also eat the leaves, apparently.
Chicory is closely related to dandelion, which has also been used as a coffee substitute (and is one of my favorite plants--one of the most useful that the Lord placed on the earth, IMO).
Coffee is increasingly being found to be good for various things: reduce parkinsons, diabetes, cirrhosis, help with asthma, mood, and we were told to give Precious caffeine if she gets a migraine. http://men.webmd.com/features/coffee-new-health-food
If you want REALLY good coffee get Community Coffee. I am not sure what they do to it, but it is nummy. I do find that Eight O'clock will do when I do not have CC.
So how do you take your coffee? Constantly or not at all? Dark enough to use as road tar or light enough to read the newspaper through? Sugar, cream, sweet stuff, black?