Coffee : Part 1

This week’s episode is the first in a two part series on coffee, a topic near and dear to my heart. In fact, I’m writing this post after coming from working the night shift, a feat I achieve each week almost exclusively with the help of a large Beano Buzz from Café Beano.

There are two kinds of people in this world : those who drink coffee, and those who don’t. On the surface I respect people who don’t need coffee to function, but secretly I judge them, because even if you are a well-rested and healthy person who doesn’t push the limits of youth by working all night long and don’t need caffeine to function, don’t you want coffee just to enjoy? It’s delicious and gives you super functioning powers! When someone tells me they don’t drink coffee I find myself immediately suspicious of them.

Amongst coffee drinkers there is another distinction between those who drink for caffeine, and those who drink for the coffee. While caffeine is my best friend and support system, I also drink coffee because it is social and delicious. Furthermore, coffee isn’t just about the buzz and the flavour, it’s also largely about the experience of drinking it. This idea led me to the amazing local organization YYC Disloyalty. I had the opportunity to interview two of the girls involved in the program, Chelsea Watson and Brieanne Biblow.

To listen to their perspective on being a Loyal Disloyal coffee drinker, listen to the episode on iTunes.

To learn more about their program, visit http://www.yycdisloyalty.com/

The website includes links to all the participating cafes, including my favorite, Café Beano.

Make sure to check back this weekend, as they’re announcing an exciting new initiative!

We also had the opportunity to speak to Ken Cutler, the owner of the Bean Stop in Eau Claire market. Anyone with imagination has at some point wandered past the eclectic displays of tea pots and wondered what kind of oddities are being offered. Well, this week we found out our curiousity was well founded. To learn more about Kopi Luwak coffee, or in Ken’s own words, the cat poop coffee, check out this great NYT article.

When I spoke to Chelsea and Brieanne the conversation quickly and frequently digressed to discussions on the merits of pastries from their participating cafes.  This week I’m foregoing a coffee related recipe since apparently the people at Deville can bake better than I can. Instead, I chose something to take advantage of the amazing seasonal produce. During a recent visit to the Calgary Farmer’s Market I bought a bag of 4 big beautiful bell peppers for $5.00! Unheard of! Should you wonder how to make use of pounds of bell peppers, as I did once I got home, here is a good starting point.

Black Bean Confetti Salad (From Smitten Kitchen)

This works equally well as a small salad–even tossed with salad greens for more bulk–or alongside salsa fresca for scooping up with a tortilla chip.

2 15-ounce cans black beans, drained and well-rinsed
4 bell peppers, a mix of colors, chopped into a small dice

1/2 super-large or 1 medium white onion, chopped into a small dice

Juice of one lime

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon ground cumin

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon honey

1/8 teaspoon cayenne

Optional: If you’re the kind of person who loves cilantro, it’s a great match for this salad.
Mix beans, bell peppers and white onion in a large bowl. In a separate, smaller bowl, whisk remaining ingredients into a vinaigrette. Ideally, you’ll have a 1/2 cup of dressing. Pour it over the bean mixture, toss it well and adjust seasonings to taste.


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  • Mike

    Awesome issue Amanda!

    • admin