Today is the second in a two part series on coffee. Even after 6 interviews, a tour of a roasting plant, and endless cups of coffee prepared from clovers, pour over bars, French presses, and any other possible way of extracting caffeine and flavour from beans, there still seems to be more to know! But, eventually I had to rein myself in and remember that despite my best efforts, there are still many people who don’t drink coffee.
(As an aside, a friend of mine pointed out that I was unfairly discriminating on last week’s blog and some people simply don’t like the taste of coffee. I tried to convince him that good coffee knows no taste preferences, and maybe people who don’t like coffee have only had the unfortunate experience of drinking bad coffee? But, I let it go, I’m here to teach, not preach.)
If you missed the episode, listen on iTunes!
Last week we learned all about third wave coffee, a movement that is being promoted by the organization YYC Coffee Disloyalty. In addition to creating awareness, through their card program, of all the amazing cafes we have in town, they are launching a new initiative today! Check out their website for more information http://www.yycdisloyalty.com/p/develop-photography-project.html
We were so interested by what happens to the beans in the cafes that we wanted to know where these beans came from! By now Fair Trade regulation is recognizable to many consumers, however if you’re interested in learning about what this means go to http://www.fairtrade.net/
For those familiar with the label, it can signify a level of consumer responsibility to a better product and ideally better quality of life for those producing it. However, two Calgary roasters are going further by embracing direct trade policies. Phil and Sebestian, as well as Fratello, source their coffee beans directly from farmers and roast the beans themselves. At the moment, direct trade is not regulated, so what it means is different for everyone. To learn more about how these local companies work with farmers to produce the best possible coffee in Calgary, go to https://www.philsebastian.com/ and http://www.fratellocoffee.com/ .
As Ken pointed out in last week’s episode, a sticker on a bag only signifies so much. Thankfully, every business we spoke to in Calgary and Vancouer was more than eager to outline every step of their buying, roasting and brewing process. If you’re curious about how your beans get in the bag, just ask! Many baristas at third wave cafes know just as much as the owners about every step of the process, and are happy to share.
Thanks for joining us to learn all about coffee! Anything we didn’t cover? Email us!
We’d love to hear all about your coffee drinking experiences in the city and abroad.
Now, for this week’s recipe pick I was inspired by something Brieanne and Chelsea said during their interview for YYC Coffee Disloyalty. Their excitement for Calgary’s food scene was based on it’s malleability, with such a new community we have the power to shape it into whatever we want it to be! I thought a desert that perfectly embodies this is a crumble. A classic dish that showcases whatever fruit is in season and has liberal use of all things delicious, such as butter and cinnamon. But, you’re only limited by your creativity! Anything can be used in a crumble, and because of the basic butter to fruit ratio, it’s always going to be amazing. It’s also the perfect companion a cup of coffee.
This is for a strawberry-rhubarb crumble, but you can crumble anything. Apples in the fall with extra extra extra cinnamon and some nutmeg, blueberries with lavender whipped cream, bananas with chocolate ice cream… see how that works? Everything would be delicious crumbled.
Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp (Taken from Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver)
3 cups strawberries halved
3 cups rhubarb chopped
½ cup honey
Mix together thoroughly and place in an 8-by-8-inch ungreased pan
½ cup flour
½ cup rolled outs
¾ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon allspice
½ cup butter
Mix until crumbly, sprinkle over fruit mixture, and bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes until golden (I use ramekins to make individual servings for guests and find 30 minutes to be the right amount of time for this smaller portion.)