Working from home and being on lockdown has made all our days quite mundane. Some have managed to escape the boredom by baking banana bread, while others have become expert gamers. I, on the other hand, dedicated my time to perfecting brewing speciality coffee at home.
There's an infinite number of options in speciality coffee. It's not about strong or weak, black or white, and sugar or no sugar. It's more of 'I want today's cup to be light, clean and taste like berries' or 'I am in the mood for a rich, strong bodied cup that tastes like chocolate!'.
You decide the sweetness, acidity, flavour and body of your cup every morning.
You can find locally roasted speciality beans all around UAE at various cafes and if you're on the lookout for a one-stop shop for all things speciality delivered to your door, head on over to www.sippybeans.com. It's got the largest variety of local and international roasters under one roof and is a great starting point to find your prefered taste to brew at home.
Once you've got the beans sorted through, the easier part begins: Here are five ways to brew speciality coffee at home:
FRENCH PRESS -Â For a full bodied and strong cup
Put in roughly 2-3 tablespoons of coarse ground coffee
Top it up with approximately 300ml of hot water
Wait for 3 minutes and plunge
This method is by far the easiest and requires the least amount of effort. It's my go-to for those early no-nonsense mornings.
COLD BREW -Â For a chilled, intense, long lasting cup
Grab any jar and add 5 tablespoons of coarsely ground coffee
Add about 300ml of room temperature water, stir and let it steep overnight
The next day strain the coffee concentrate and voila! You've got iced coffee for almost a week
Always serve it half and half - part coffee concentrate, part ice. This is a strong one!
This one takes about 12-18 hours to brew. However, you can create it in big batches and store it in your fridge for at least a few weeks. It also has relatively low acidity so it's good if you have a sensitive stomach.
LATTE -Â For a comforting, indulgent cup
Finely grind 18-21g of coffee
Tamp (this is the process to pack your grounds and ensure an even extraction)
Lock the portafilter into your machine and let the machine do its work to extract the perfect espresso
On the side, froth around 200-300ml of milk
Pour the milk into the espresso you've extracted. Give a shot at latte art while you're at it
And done! Give yourself a pat on the back, you're now a full blown barista. Make sure to get a reliable espresso machine as it'll be worth it. This method needs a bit of experience and time so this is more of a weekend cup next to some scrambled eggs and avocado on toast.
V60 - For a clear, crisp flavourful cup
Pre-wet the filter paper to get rid of any papery taste
Add 17-20g of medium coarse ground coffee
Go for the first pour: 50-60ml of hot water and wait for 30 seconds
Time for the second pour: 200ml of hot water in a circling motion
Wait until all the water has passed through the filter (ideally 2-3minutes)
This is best for when you're trying out new beans and really want those tasting notes to pop. I'd typically go for this late afternoon right after lunch as a nice pick me up.
COFFEE DRIP BAGS -Â For a light, convenient cup
Rip the bag open
Place it in any cup lying around
Pour water in and just wait for it to drain through
You'll be surprised how good these taste despite their simplicity
If you're ever travelling - which hopefully will be soon - then this is your go to! It's like tea bags but with speciality coffee. I always have a bag or two in my purse as emergency coffee. You always gotta be prepared!
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