We love our coffee program here. In fact, we couldn't imagine starting off our day with anything other than a cup of coffee. A few months ago we decided to take a week off from coffee. Yerba mate, Camille's mom's famous Red Tea, and of course chaga made for perfect alternatives yet after 1 day we were back sipping on our butter brew. You can say we are addicted to the caffeine, but quite frankly, it is the morning ritual and damn good flavor that keeps us coming back for more of this sacred drink.
Coffee runs deep in our family. Camille's Louisiana roots has her craving that delicious dark brew day in and day out. One visit with any of her family members and you will know exactly what we mean. Coffee is more then a jolt of caffeine in the morning, which trust us, being a hard working entrepreneurs and parents means being on call 24 hours a day. But it's the celebration and the sense of community that is formed around the ritual of coffee.
Coffee is unique because of the multiple varieties of brewing methods and quality that is available to us. From drive-thru windows to pour over coffee made to order by a hipster with a mustache and a tie. Some folks thrive on several packets of sugar, while folks like us stick to zero glycemic sweeteners like stevia. Soy, rice, almond or straight up cow's milk, cream, or half and half cut the bitter and sweetness to make the perfect cup of coffee. Coffee is all a matter of personal preference and for the last several months, we have been on the Bulletproof Coffee regime.
I would have never thought that blending butter into a cup of black coffee would be so amazingly delicious and satiating as it is. The protocol comes from Dave Asprey, the founder of the Bulletproof Diet. Years ago we noticed a tweet talking about buttered coffee. Although slightly taken off guard by the post, it was intriguing enough to give it a try. Rich, creamy, and frothy, it had all the characteristics of a cappuccino, but without the carb rich dairy. At first it was challenging to give up our fresh Jersey cow cream from our Amish neighbors, but in time, we have become hooked on the buttered brew!
So, how do we make a banging cup of coffee?
Before we approach the process of brewing coffee, we have to look at the beans we want to brew. While Camille is a dark roast fan (less acidity, less caffeine, more body), Franky boy prefers lighter roasts (better distinction between beans origins~FLAVOR). It is the process of harvesting, drying, and roasting, that can determine your coffee experience.
Mycotoxins are molds that grow on coffee during the drying process. Environmental conditions or lack of attention to detail can infiltrate coffee beans and carry into the brewing process. This is a great podcast transcript to check out between Dave Asprey, the creator of Bulletproof Coffee and Dan Cox all about the coffee industry and mycotoxins in coffee.
I am told roasted coffee beans begin to oxidize 2 weeks after roasting. Even quicker when purchasing pre-ground coffee. That's we purchase 5 pound bags of coffee that are roasted just a day or two before they are shipped to our home from a nearby coastal town. Our favorite, as seen below, is from a small artisan coffee company called 44 North. In our eyes, their coffee is the best in Maine and little personalized notes on our coffee bags is a well embraced touch of class. We've been fortunate enough to visit their shop, meet the owners, and seeing their roasting facility.
The next step in the brewing process is grinding of the beans. While we snuck by for years with an electric spice/coffee grinder, the consistency of the grind was never even, leaving us with an uneven grind, leaving whole beans in the coffee grounds and sediment in the actual coffee. Over or underground beans made for inefficient brews, which in time, resulting in a waste of both quality product in money. After a friend's recommendation, we upgraded to a Burr grinder, which has been a well received addition to our coffee program. Burr grinders, even if electric, do not heat up the product through friction as a typical blade grinder would. The result is less oxidation and even grinding throughout the product. Settings on the machine allow us to adjust the grind according to whatever brewing method we are using that day.
Brew It Up!
The French Press has been our go-to coffee brewing apparatus for years. Our 2 quart press has been all over the country with us and has kept us warm for many cold New England winters. That is, until it broke! Although, slightly devastated, we knew our time with the French Press has run its course and it was time to upgrade our system again. We also love using the Aeropress from time to time (pictured above) as it makes for an easy travel coffee maker, and you can also make an easy Espresso or Americano when desired. The Aeropress uses a filter as well, so it's important to upgrade to the stainless steel filter option if you're going to be using it often.
Along comes the Chemex.
Originally made in 1941, the Chemex looks more like a tool for science experiments, but makes such great pour over coffee. Rather then continue dealing with the paper filters, we upgraded to the stainless steel cone for it's durability and of course less waste. Our Chemex makes enough coffee in one go to make two batches of coffee for the both of us. A towel around the base and a glass top keeps the heat in a tad bit longer, but we still end up warming up our second cup on the stove top. To get the official pour over action, we use this Hario kettle.
When Frank is feeling the barista vibe, he busts out his scale and weighs the beans and water. A ratio of 15 grams of water to every 1 gram of coffee makes a delicious and more importantly, consistent cup of coffee.
Once we have a pot of coffee ready, it's time to break out the unsalted block of grass fed butter. 2 tablespoons of butter for every 12 ounces of coffee go into the Mason jar along with a few drops of stevia, and at times MCT oil. In our Butter Book, we shared our recipe for using hot Chaga Tea as the liquid to pour over our coffee, upgrading the coffee even more.
Next, we plug in the immersion blender and give the coffee a whirl, until the black brew becomes a creamy and frothy blend of butter + oil. You could also use a blender for this part. The results are heavenly and allow us to feel completely satiated, working diligently until our first meal of the day around 1-2 pm.
By upping the fats and lowering the carbs, we are able to feel grounded and focused, without the crash often associated with coffee or carb rich meals. We'll spring for a dash of fresh cream in our coffee every so often, usually during a family gathering or holiday.