We at Kitchabes strive to provide the best experience for coffee and tea aficionados. We have developed coffee and tea essentials over the past few years which people love to buy for themselves or as gifts for their loved ones.
And now we are turning it up a notch by offering a coffee or tea subscription box specifically made for the subscriber’s lifestyle.
We curate coffee and tea blends from around the world with the subscriber’s preferences in mind. Our coffee and tea products are made with love – by upholding fair trade and environmental sustainability practices. Every box is filled with love and offers you a great farm to cup experience.
WHAT IS A KITCHABOX
The Kitchabox is a subscription box filled with fresh, delicious and ethically sourced coffee beans and loose leaf teas delivered to you (or someone else you want it to be sent to) every month. You have the option to subscribe for one, three, six or twelve months.
Your sign up process starts with a simple quiz which takes note of your preferences for coffee or tea. We will then curate coffee beans or loose leaf teas which suit your tastes. There will also be information pamphlets included in the Kitchabox for you to know more about where the coffee beans or loose leaf teas come from. There are also brewing guides included to help you make the perfect cup of coffee or tea.
HOW TO GET A KITCHABOX
Start your adventure of getting a Kitchabox by clicking here! http://box.kitchables.com/
Here’s how you can make the most out of your profiling quiz:
IF YOU CHOOSE TO GET A COFFEE SUBSCRIPTION BOX:
- There will be an option to choose between DRIP or ESPRESSO types of coffee. Choose the DRIP option If you are using drip coffee makers such as pour over, automatic drip machine, or coffee filter. Choose the ESPRESSO option if you use an espresso machine, aeropress, or French press.
- You will also be asked how many coffee bean bags you want delivered every month. Try estimating how many cups of coffee you make at home in a month. The “1 x 300 g” option is enough for 30 cups and the “2 x 300g” option gives you 60 cups.
- You have the option to choose how many months you want to get a Kitchabox. There’s a month-to-month, 3-month, 6-month, and yearly subscription plan.
- You’ll also be asked what your usual day is like – Easy going and relaxed? Busy but productive? Or non-stop hectic?
- Take note of what kind of coffee you like or what your taste buds usually crave. Do you like something sweet and savory? How about fruity and citrusy? Do you like chocolate notes with a nutty and bold flavor?
IF YOU CHOOSE TO GET A TEA SUBSCRIPTION BOX:
- You’ll be asked which teas you prefer – black, green, mixed, or fusion teas. Black and green teas are basic offerings, while mixed and fusion teas are a blend of complementary flavors.
- There’s also an option to choose how much tea you want – the “2 x 30g” option makes 30 cups of tea while the “4 x 30g” option makes 60 cups of tea.
- You have the option to choose how many months you want to get a Kitchabox tea subscription. There’s a month-to-month, 3-month, 6-month, and yearly subscription plan.
- You’ll also be asked what your usual day is like – Easy going and relaxed? Busy but productive? Or non-stop hectic?
- You’ll also get the chance to choose which particular benefits you want to get from you cup of tea. Choose among beauty, energy boosting, relaxation, or holistic health benefits.
HOW TO GET MORE OUT OF YOUR KITCHABOX
We offer Kitchables Starter Kits (for coffee and tea) which you have the option to add to cart upon check out. The coffee subscription starter kits include a pour over coffee maker, gooseneck kettle, and double-walled glasses. The tea subscription starter kits include an imperial teapot, gooseneck kettle, and a set of teacups.
WAITING FOR YOUR MONTHLY GOODIES
Your monthly Kitchabox delivery would definitely be something to look forward to! It’s like getting a coffee or tea gift set for yourself or a loved one every month, for as long as you want. The Kitchabox is perfect for those who can’t get enough of coffee or tea, and would like to get surprised with awesome goodies every month. The subscription box is also perfect as a gift to impress your family members or friends.
Start your journey for the love of coffee and tea here — http://box.kitchables.com/
Everyone is looking forward to this time of the year, with good food on Christmas Eve, parties here and there, and people showing their love through gifts. We’ll help you choose the perfect Christmas gifts for your loved ones, especially when they are coffee and tea enthusiasts.
Are you ready for a curated list of the best coffee and tea Christmas gifts for your loved ones? Here we go…
FOR TEA LOVERS
TEA GIFT SETS
Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder (Culinary Grade) – Have your own mini (or perhaps informal) tea ceremony at home with this all-natural matcha powder. It’s an excellent source of antioxidants and amino acids. Matcha is a powerhouse of health benefits that boosts your well-being. Learn more about matcha in our feature article here.
Numi Organic Tea, Tea By Mood Gift Set – Bless your loved one with a tea gift set that uplifts their mood every single time. If they need healing, inspiration, motivation and focus, this tea gift set is their go-to mood booster for any purpose. Numi organic tea gift set has a whole lot of heart as it is made with fair trade practices and environmental-social sustainability.
Tea Forte SINGLE STEEPS Loose Tea Sampler – Give your loved one an assorted variety of teas with this gift set. The box contains a variety of high-quality teas from around the world. We recommend using the Kitchables Ceylon Glass Teapot to brew these teas.
Ceylon Glass Teapot – More and more people are loving this modern twist on a teapot that is your best friend in making fresh tea every single day. It has a fine mesh stainless steel diffuser for an even drink and glass material that withstands high heat temperatures. It’s the perfect tea essential that goes great with any kitchen.
Tea Cups (Set of 4) – Be the zen master as you serve these tea cups for your family and friends. Forget outdated porcelain saucers with our simple, elegant design made of borosilicate glass that’s light for easy maintenance and handling. Use your teacups how you want to – our glasses are mouth-blown, dishwasher and microwave safe and great with your favorite tea.
Hexagon Cork Coaster (Set of 12) – These coasters are the perfect addition to your tea rituals or your tea station at home. No more water rings, damaged wood or annoying drip and spill marks on your kitchen, office or dining table tops. Protect wood, glass and even marble furniture surfaces from liquids while adding a modern rustic touch to your home.
FOR COFFEE LOVERS
Driven Coffee – What we love about Driven Coffee is that their team of expert roasters are passionate about the art and science of making the perfect blend of coffee. They are currently offering free shipping on all orders, so it’s something you can’t miss! Check out our full review of Driven Coffee here.
Atlas Coffee Club – Atlas Coffee Club offers coffee sourced from all around the world. They are also passionate about teaching people about coffee with their clever brewing guides. Get curated coffee from around the world delivered to you or your loved one through this coffee subscription service.
Kitchabox Coffee and Tea Subscription – There’s an exciting surprise coming up as we are launching our coffee and tea subscription service. The Kitchabox is a personalized coffee and tea monthly subscription that takes into mind the personal preferences of the subscriber. Spoil your loved one with awesome coffee or tea packages every month, and help them get to know more about coffees and teas from around the world. Sign up now for you or your loved one for one coffee-and-tea fantastic year.
More coffee subscriptions – If you would like to know more coffee subscription options, check out our post on the top coffee subscription services in North America.
Love espressos like we do, but always burn your fingers on the glass? Our Espresso glasses fit under most machines and hold up to a double shot of espresso (2.7 or 80ml) and have a unique double-walled design. This is the perfect gift for your espresso-loving friends.
If you’re looking for the perfect pour over coffee maker, you’ll find it at Kitchables. Personalize your coffee to exactly how you want it and control every aspect of the brewing process. Give the gift of love to a family member or friend and bless their mornings with awesome dripped coffee
These permanent filters are the perfect upgrade for any pour over coffee maker. Made with 18/8 stainless steel with dual filter micro-mesh technology ensuring absolutely no clogging. Your loved one will thank you with this fuss-free, no paper filter way of brewing coffee.
Help your loved one have the freshest coffee beans in every single brew. It has a built-in Co2 AirFresh valve, which allows Co2 to escape one-way and with an airtight seal keeping oxygen out. It comes in 7 beautiful colors to choose from.
These Kitchables signature coasters are lovely and functional, perfect for any kitchen or coffee station at home. It’s the perfect fit under or over your cup or mug. Keep your furnishings water stain free, or use as a cover for fun outdoor summer drinks! Each coaster measure 3.34 inch and are compatible with all Kitchables double walled glasses
Here at Kitchables, we strive to fulfill the needs of coffee enthusiasts the world over. So we made a series of infographics that are fun to learn for people of all ages. In this series of infographics you’ll learn what to do and what not to do in a coffee shop, the healthy benefits of coffee, top cities to travel for coffee lovers, coffee versus wine, and awesome coffee drinks you need to try.
Coffee Shop Etiquette 101
Do you know what makes baristas cringe or what makes them appreciate you more as a customer? Take a look at these do’s and don’ts.
The Health Benefits of Coffee
This is a no-fuss guide on the holistic benefits of drinking coffee. In other words – more reasons to drink coffee and all the answers you need to say when someone asks you about your coffee habit.
Top Cities to Visit for a Great Cup of Coffee
Here are some travel recommendations from our insiders who have been there and done that! Where would you like to drink your next cup of coffee?
Cold Brew vs. Iced Coffee
As a coffee lover, it’s about time that you know the difference between the two. There are main differences in brewing method and flavor profile, and each type of coffee drink caters to different taste buds.
Coffee vs. Wine
From this infographic you’ll learn that it’s okay to have both – as long as you drink in moderation.
5 Awesome Brew Recipes
We recommend that you try these recipes out. You can make your own version of these drinks or check these popular recipes online.
It’s that time of the year again when everything smells like pumpkin spice. This is just the beginning of the festive season (Christmas and New Year coming soon!), and that much awaited Thanksgiving Dinner is the start of how we will end the year with grace and gratitude.
We did some digging around and looked for the best recipes you could easily make for Thanksgiving. The following are highly recommended cocktail, coffee, and dessert recipes which will fill you with joy over Thanksgiving weekend.
THANKSGIVING PARTY COCKTAILS
Pumpkin Spice Martini – You’ll love how fun and delicious this holiday cocktail is. It’s easy to make and leaves a great impression to your guests.
Holiday Punch II – Looking for a delicious non-alcoholic drink? All it takes to make this punch is cranberry juice, unsweetened pineapple juice, ginger ale, and some sweetness.
Apple Pie Shot – Nothing celebrates Thanksgiving better than a cocktail version of an apple pie. Get some vodka, apple cider, whipped cream, and cinnamon to concoct this superb cocktail.
Cranberry Champagne Cocktail – This classy drink tops off any Thanksgiving dinner with flair. All you need are four ingredients that add up to a flavorful mix.
Thanksgiving’s a Breeze Seabreezes – The name of this drink seems promising, but this is definitely a great reward for all your hard work in preparing a Thanksgiving dinner. You just need three ingredients to make this one, plus some mint sprigs for garnish.
Cranberry Sangria – This Spanish summertime favorite is also perfect for the fall and winter months. Use seasonal fruits with red or white wine. This complex mix makes Thanksgiving more special.
THANKSGIVING COFFEE RECIPES
Coffee Liqueur – This is a no-fuss coffee liqueur recipe which you can use for food and drinks that require a flavored liqueur. We love how it mixes well with milk or vodka.
Easy Cinnamon Dolce Latte – This can easily be your favorite alternative to the usual Starbucks drink. The recipe requires a love for cinnamon and some strong brewed coffee.
Salted Caramel Mocha – This lush mocha recipe does justice to the mix of coffee, cocoa, milk and caramel sauce. You can’t go wrong with a little kosher salt, sugar, whipped cream, and caramel on top.
Coffee S’more Milkshake, Pumpkin Pie Frappuccino, and Easy Peppermint Syrup – Mr. Coffee made a list of top 3 coffee recipes to serve after thanksgiving dinner, which we definitely agree as awesome nightcap recipes. We recommend the Pumpkin Pie Frappuccino for those who can’t get enough of this season’s favorite.
If you’re looking for the perfect cups to serve your coffee and cocktails this Thanksgiving, check out our shop for great deals this season.
THANKSGIVING PARTY DESSERTS
No Bake Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes – This is the perfect dessert for fall, no baking required. You’ll need gingersnap cookies, Greek yogurt, cream cheese, pumpkin puree, vanilla extract – plus some sugar, spice and everything nice.
Pumpkin Pie in a Jar – We love this idea as take-home party favors for guests. You’ll need some graham crackers and whip up some pumpkin mousse.
Salted Caramel Apple Parfaits – This gluten-free, nut free, and dairy free dessert is perfect for any health buff who still wants to enjoy something delicious for Thanksgiving. You’ll definitely enjoy the delectable layers of apple filling, coconut salted caramel, and coconut crumble.
Caramel Apple Trifles – We love desserts in shot glasses (but you can serve them on espresso cups too). You’ll be preparing some caramel mousse, caramel sauce, and apple crumble. But these ingredients go a long way as you serve them in small portions.
Butterscotch Pudding Shooters – This is another shot glass dessert that packs a flavorful punch. The layers of butterscotch pudding, gingersnap crumb crust, and cinnamon spiced whipped cream are quite lush. We recommend these trendy glass cups for the perfect dessert servings.
PARTY FAVORS, ANYONE?
Looking for the perfect tools to stock your coffee, tea or dessert station this Thanksgiving? How about party favors to give as gifts to your guests? Check out these highly recommended Kitchables products that bring a modern touch to any home!
To make a simple tea garden at home is surprisingly easy. It’s easy in a way that you don’t need fancy materials and equipment. There are certain factors to consider though such as the regular climate in your area, the type of soil, and your patience. Even if you don’t have a garden, you can still plant tea or herbs on patios, windowsills, and planters in your balcony.
Growing Camellia sinensis a.k.a Real Tea Plant
At the minimum, tea plant is “hardy to zone 8” while other resources say anywhere between zone 7-9 as weather and climate changes can vary largely in different places. Zone 8 has a typical temperate climate with mild winters. The average temperatures range from 10 degrees Fahrenheit (-12.2 degrees Celsius) to 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-6.7 degrees Celsius). If you live in zone 8, summers are generally warm but nights are cooler. This zone is usually ideal for gardening. Find more about zones here.
The tea plant grows to about 1-2 meters in height but may be taller when not pruned. When you are ready to plant, you have to choose well-drained and sandy acidic soil. Note that it takes around three years before you can finally harvest your tea leaves. This is where patience comes in.
When it’s time to harvest, you still have to process the leaves based on your desired type of tea. During the fall season, small white flowers also appear, and you can harvest and dry them to add more flavor to your tea. The processing can make a huge difference because it determines when a tea plant becomes black, green, or oolong tea.
For black tea
1. Pluck the youngest leaves and buds
2. Roll the leaves; crush them until they become dark and red.
3. Spread the leaves on a tray. Leave the tray in a cool place for 2-3 days.
4. Dry the leaves in the oven at 250 F. Wait for 20 minutes.
5. Store in an air-tight container.
6. Enjoy your tea!
For green tea
1. Pluck the youngest leaves and buds.
2. Steam the leaves on your stove for about 1-2 minutes and run cold water immediately to stop the heating process. You can also try roasting them in a skillet for 2 minutes to achieve a different flavor.
3. Roll the leaves into tubes using your hands.
4. Spread the leaves in a dish then place in an oven preheated to 212-230 F for 10-12 minutes (or heat them at 250 F for 20 minutes).
5. When the leaves are dry and crispy, store in an air-tight container.
For oolong tea
1. Pluck the youngest leaves and buds.
2. Spread the leaves on a towel and let them wilt under the sun for 45 minutes.
3. Once done, let the leaves sit at room temperature for a few hours.
4. Stir the leaves up every hour.
5. Spread the leaves on a baking sheet.
6. Dry the leaves in the oven at 250 F for 20 minutes.
7. Store in air-tight container.
If you can’t get hold of real tea plant seedlings, you can also try growing herbal teas or tisanes such as chamomile, lavender, and peppermint. This is also great if you want to harvest tea faster or no longer want to wait for three years anymore. Come to think of it, when you buy from the store, you don’t exactly know how long the dried leaves have been there. But when you plant and harvest your own, you know you have something fresh that will create a stronger brew.
Take a look at this cool infographic from Fix.com.
Source: Fix.com Blog
Ready to make your own tea garden? Good luck and enjoy it!
Did you know? The herbal tea you’ve been drinking is not really tea. It’s called a tisane (pronounced ti-zahn). Herbal teas or tisanes do not come from Camellia sinensis or tea plant. “Real teas” or those that come from the tea plant are white, black, green, and oolong tea. Tisanes, on the other hand, are infusions from leaves, barks, roots, flowers, seeds, fruits, and spices.
There are many different types of tisanes which are usually derived from the parts of the plant they come from. Some of the few examples are the following.
• Leaves – lemongrass, peppermint, rooibos
• Roots – ginger, turmeric, echinacea
• Fruits – peach, apples, berries
• Seeds/spices – anise, cardamom, fennel
• Flowers – hibiscus, chamomile, rose, lavender
• Barks – cinnamon, black cherry
At this point, it’s already established that a tisane is not tea, although you’ll most likely hear everyone call it a tea. Don’t worry, that doesn’t make tisane any less worthy because it actually tastes good when steeped properly. A lot of tisanes are known to have amazing health benefits too! There’s probably a herbal tea for every ailment. Just be sure to check with your doctor if you are taking any medications that might react negatively with the tisanes.
Here are some benefits of tisanes.
Peppermint – decongestant, anti-inflammatory, helps suppress appetite
Dried Ginger – has antihistamine properties, anti-inflammatory, eases motion sickness, flavor booster
Lemon balm – has calming effects, alleviates digestive problems, helps ease common colds, helps treat headaches and toothaches
Chamomile – helps treat sleep and stomach troubles, antibacterial
Hibiscus – helps lower blood pressure, high in vitamins, diuretic
Cinnamon – lowers cholesterol, fights viruses, increases antioxidants,
Rooibos – helps with skin irritations, contains cancer-fighting properties
Fennel – relieves indigestion, soothes stomach
Lavender – promotes calmness
Echinacea – improves cold, flu, and sinusitis symptoms
Lemongrass – relieves indigestion, bloating, flatulence, headaches, nervous exhaustion
There are also significant differences between tea and tisane. For one, all teas have caffeine while tisanes don’t. The preparations are also something to take note of. The steeping time for tea is generally shorter than that of tisane.
How to Prepare Tisanes
For lightweight plant materials like leaves, flowers, and fruits, infusion is usually done. The preparation can be done in a variety of tools such as using a French press, ceramic or glass teapot, stainless steel pot, or bamboo infuser. Using an aluminum pot is never recommended because aluminum is a reactive metal. It can react with some types of plants, and may produce toxins in your drink.
To start the infusion, bring water to a boil then pour it into the herbs or tisanes. Let it sit covered for twenty minutes. Strain the herb, and choose to drink tea immediately or let it cool to room temperature or refrigerate. It’s pretty much the same with how you steep tea but with tisanes, it will take longer.
For thick or hard plant materials such as barks and roots, decoction is the process. In this case, the tisanes are simmered (not steeped) in longer periods of time. The method is to place the plant materials in boiling water for 15-20 minutes to release more essential oils and flavors. Sometimes the barks and roots are smashed into pieces first to make it quicker and easier to simmer.
After infusion or decoction, you can still do the process again given that the plant materials still give off strong tasting tea. The brewing times and proportion vary because plants have different surfaces and densities. A general rule of thumb is: 1 teaspoon of dried, cut, and sifted herb, or 2 tablespoons of fresh herb per 8 ounces of water. If you’re keen in using the weight method, you can have .5-5 grams of dried herb, or herbal combination for every 1 cup of water.
Source: Preparing Medicinal Teas | Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine
Tisanes have several variety and types that the choices can be overwhelming. If you don’t know where to start, you can look at the most common types listed above. If you decide to purchase, most manufacturers include instructions for infusion or decoction.
A word of caution – Although there are so many claims about the health benefits of herbal teas, be proactive in doing your own research and asking the experts especially if you are trying to treat an ailment. It’s best to avoid teas with artificial flavorings. Organic ones are still better.
There’s a bunch of super creative uses for matcha green tea. Yup, we hear matcha lovers rejoice! The popular powdered green tea has entered the mainstream for all good reasons. It’s been loved by many because of its earthy sweet taste, as well as the good things it does for the body.
Unsweetened matcha green tea drink is best because there’s no added sugar. Some people are put off by its grassy taste though, so if you want something sweeter, you can opt to use natural sweeteners and add moderate amounts only. That’s if you really want to reap the potential benefits of green tea.
Now if you are feeling a little more experimental or if you want to try something new, not to mention score an extra dose of anti-oxidants, there are several food recipes that make good use of matcha! You already know about matcha latte or smoothie. Take a look at these ideas. For sure, you will love at least one or two of these.
1. Seasoning for side dishes – If you are fond of side dishes, sprinkle matcha powder instead of salt, pepper, or other spices. You can also experiment and mix it with other spices and see if it comes out tasty for you.
2. Miso soup – This traditional Japanese soup can be prepared in many ways depending on the chef. Usually, there are vegetables and meat. The soup can be salty. Try adding matcha powder to counter the saltiness.
3. Chicken tenders – Mix matcha powder with panko (in Japanese cooking) or breadcrumbs that have light and flaky texture. Just do the usual routine of drenching the chicken tender in seasoned flour, then egg, then the matcha + panko mixture. Delicious when baked!
4. Chicken or pork curry – Easy! Just add matcha powder to your spices, and cook as usual.
5. Matcha Granola Bars – If you want a new kind of boost before doing your daily activities, start preparing your matcha granola bars. These will be a runner’s delight for sure.
6. Matcha Oatmeal – We mean yes! Matcha might have a strange taste for some, and you might not like it at all in your oatmeal but just try and see how it goes out. Add a sweetener if you must!
7. Matcha Chia Seeds Pudding – This one’s famous. No need for fancy equipment; just a little patience to wait it out while it’s sitting in the fridge to achieve its creamy and thick texture. This is perfect for breakfast or snacks.
8. Homemade Ice Cream & Ice Pops – This one’s even more famous! You will see matcha-flavored ice cream and ice pops in most stores nowadays. When you chance upon really good ones, you’re in for a never-ending adventure. You’d want to recreate and make your own for daily consumption. LOL
9. Sandwich Spread – So have you heard of this? This certainly exists! Think matcha milk jam, matcha milk peanut spread, and matcha cream cheese spread. Go ahead and google those!
10. Guacamole – Two very trendy foods today: matcha and avocado. What more can you ask for? Yup, quick and easy. Best for dips and salads. Holy guacamole!
11. Matcha Rice – Are you a rice person? This might interest you! It’s pretty much like adding matcha flavor to your rice. Go try it!
12. Matcha Jello – Perfect snacks for kids and kids at heart. Matcha Jello or jell-o makes a good dessert in your home.
13. Matcha Popcorn – Love popcorn? Now you can have a healthier version of your movie marathon snack. Add matcha powder instead of cheese for a change.
14. Ice cubes – Yes to matcha ice cubes! You’re probably familiar of coffee ice cubes, milk, or whatnot. Add matcha to the list. It’s a perfect addition to your cocktail drinks, lemonades, or juices.
15. Sweet treats & baked goods – There are a ton of these that you can make. Thanks to the ever versatile matcha. If you’re tired of your usual ingredients, spice up your baking life by having matcha as your new staple. Here are some ideas.
Ice cream sandwich
Yey, are you ready to make your own matcha-infused recipe? Now go and enjoy!
Cold brew coffee is not new. It has been around for many years, and although its real origin is still unknown, there are already a lot of coffee companies or shops that have created their own version. If you remember from our previous post – Coffee Trends for 2017 – cold brew was rightfully included in the list. As many coffee experts and enthusiasts have predicted, it has become mainstream for all the good reasons!
Cold brew is not your usual iced coffee. Although the process is quite easy, it can get complicated because it involves a much longer or slower brewing time, and the resulting taste depends on several factors. The good thing is that it’s not limited to coffee shops or skilled baristas only. You can make your own cold brew coffee at home as long as you have the ingredients, and the tools.
Before learning how to make a DIY cold brew, take some time to know more about it first, and see if it is something you want to do.
Cold brew coffee is brewed with room temperature water or cold water for 12-24 hours.
You are free to choose how long you want to steep the coffee. The rule of thumb is that the longer you steep, the stronger and more flavorful the concentrate will be. With cold brew, coffee is not subjected to any type of heat at all. The water temperature impacts the extraction rate which is why cold brew takes a much longer time to steep.
Cold brew usually has more caffeine content.
Generally, cold brew is more caffeinated than a hot-brewed coffee. It is said to have 67% less acidity, but it also depends on so many factors such as the water temperature, ratio of grounds to water, brewing time, type of coffee beans, as well as its grind size.
Although not a guarantee that it’s always effective, it has been offered to people who have sensitive stomach or acid reflux. It may have worked for some people but it’s also not true for all cold brews. Since there are no heating elements involved during the cold brew process, the oils that contain acid in the coffee beans aren’t extracted as much as it is when the coffee is brewed hot.
If you badly need caffeine but find it hard to drink hot brew, then perhaps you can give cold brew a try to see if it fits your need.
Cold brew’s flavor profile depends on the brewing method.
As to whether it tastes better than hot brew or not is a matter of personal opinion. The general opinion of the drinking public is that cold brew tastes smoother and sweeter because of lower extraction rate. You may also hear others say that it’s dull, dead, and flat. But it is also important to note that the flavors of your cold brew depend on how you brew it.
There are two basic or common methods to cold brew, and each has its own impact to the resulting flavor.
With immersion method, you just need to combine water and course coffee grounds in a container or a jar, let it sit for 12 up to 24 hours, whichever you please. Once time’s up, you can start straining the grounds. Easy peasy, right?
Because it’s simple, a lot of coffee enthusiasts prefer the immersion process. Just set it, then forget it. Also, you don’t need fancy tools or materials for this process. So how’s the flavor? The immersion method gives you a balanced flavor, which means that it isn’t too bitter or acidic. It also produces a full-bodied flavor and great mouth feel.
Since the method saturates the coffee grounds for a long period of time, the result is a smooth and low acidity coffee with lower flavor notes. Just a note – if you’re looking for brighter notes, and more pleasant coffee flavor, the immersion method is not for you.
Ice Drip Method
This method requires special equipment which is an ice drip cold brew tower found oftentimes in coffee shops. Cold water just drips into the coffee and the grounds absorb it. The coffee then drips into a jar or container underneath. It’s pretty much like making a pour-over coffee but this one needs an equipment since you have to keep the drip going for the entire day or up to 24 hours as desired.
With the drip method, you get a wide range of flavors – clean, floral, and fruity notes. It has higher acidity than the cold brew that’s made from immersion, but if you are willing to give that up for a cleaner cup of brews, then this one’s for you.
One thing that might make this challenging for you is the equipment especially if you plan to do it at home. You may need to have your own dripper, or build one yourself. Also, if you are fond of making large batches, it can be time-consuming because you can only generate a small batch of cold brew at one time.
Save your fresh coffee beans for hot-brewed coffee.
Yes, you read that right! With cold brew, a lot of the solubles from the beans do not get extracted so there’s really no need to whip your fresh coffee beans at all. Your two-week old beans can still produce sweet and quality cold brew. Don’t get too far out though! Coffee beans that have been lying around for months or so won’t give you good cold brew anymore.
Also, cold brew uses course coffee grounds because the steeping process lasts longer. If the grounds are too fine, then over-extraction may occur which will result to bitter-tasting coffee.
Basic formula for DIY cold brew
Cold brew can be expensive in coffee shops so if you want to make your own, you can certainly do so. You can follow this basic formula: 1 pound of ground beans to one gallon of water. You can even reduce it to a quarter pound beans to 4 cups of water if you like.
If you just want to make your own at home, here are the basic steps you can follow for the immersion method.
1. Put the course ground coffee beans in the jar or container, add cold or room temperature water, and then stir. Some people go against stirring because it oxidizes the coffee. They just let the coffee grounds absorb the water. Other people tried stirring, and didn’t have complaints.
2. Stir the mixture properly using a wooden spoon until it looks like mud. Again, you can skip this if you don’t feel like stirring.
3. Let the mixture steep for 12-24 hours. It’s up to you how long you want it.
4. Once done with steeping, line a sieve with cheesecloth or paper towel, and strain the coffee grounds. Have another jar or container ready for your brew. Just wait for 1-2 minutes to complete.
5. Discard the coffee grounds and keep your coffee concentrate – a.k.a. cold brew – in the fridge, or pour right away to a glass. You can dilute it with water if you want to mellow down the strong flavor. Use one part brew, one part water.
You can even add milk, cream, or sweetener to counter the bitter flavor. The coffee concentrate can be kept in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Here’s a video of the immersion method from The Protein Chef. In this case, you will see that the coffee grounds were strained twice.
So, you ready now to make your own cold brew?
You know you’re a coffee lover, enthusiast, or even a die-hard coffee drinker when almost “everything” in your life is associated with coffee. You can’t survive your morning or your entire day without coffee. You can’t think creatively without coffee in your system. And everything just doesn’t seem right without your favorite beverage. Even your social media posts are all about coffee!
Of course we know it – you are already awesome! Given that you love coffee so much, it would also be nice to level up your coffee drinking game by taking part in little yet meaningful ways to make this world a better place. Here are some more ways to become an awesome coffee lover!
1. Support organic coffee.
A lot of the toxins, pesticides, and chemicals from conventional farming are harmful to the environment. Although these chemicals don’t necessarily get into your cup of coffee, they had such a huge impact during farming. They can pollute the waterways and can be hazardous to the farmers, workers, and animals.
It is also a great idea to support shade-grown coffee whenever you can. This kind of coffee comes from coffee plants that are grown under a canopy of trees. According to this article from Serious Eats, there is no significant difference in taste between shade-grown coffee and one that is not. This may not be the point-of-view of everyone as there are probably others who swear by the taste of organic coffee or of another variety.
Whatever the case is though and as long as coffee beans are cultivated and processed properly, shade-grown coffee plants will not only taste great but also positively impact the biodiversity of a landscape.
Fruit trees such as avocado, banana, orange, and lemon, as well as cedars, and some forest trees can provide a canopy or shade for coffee plants. Together, they all create a harmonious nitrogen balance. This kind of setup also promotes sustainability of more species.
In short, although shade-grown coffee may have little to no effect on the taste of the coffee you drink, it does have an important impact on the environment. And it is more fulfilling for you as a coffee lover if you are able to help in that kind of way.
2. Use a compostable coffee cup.
Using styrofoam coffee cups are common. In fact, almost all coffee shops employ this method because styrofoam is more sturdy, and such a great insulator. It helps keep the coffee warm for longer. However, it doesn’t help the environment at all. These coffee cups just fill up landfills, never degrade, and will forever be wastes.
Whenever you can, consider using compostable or biodegradable coffee cups, or choose coffee shops that support this environment-friendly cause. There are already coffee shops that are making a move to support positive change by replacing their plastic or styrofoam cups with compostable ones.
When hosting gatherings at home, you can serve your coffee or drinks using compostable cups too. Try looking for a set online that can also give value for your money.
This article mentioned that there’s a new packaging idea to support an environmental project. The company called Reuse, Reduce, Grow created coffee cups that have flowers and seeds embedded in the lining. These cups will degrade in less than 200 days and allow the seeds to grow. The idea is that they can plant the cups in the appropriate area in their community or give the cups to any coffee shop that supports this project.
3. Invest in a travel mug.
In relation to the second item, investing in a travel mug is also a meaningful way to help the environment because this avoids the use of disposable non-compostable coffee cups. If you order coffee frequently, or if your office serves free coffee, then bringing your own mug or cup is a great idea! For one, you eliminate waste, and also, you get to bring your favorite mug.
As a bonus, you might want to look for coffee shops near you that sell their own travel mug. Perhaps they give a discount or some sort of a reward if you use it when ordering your coffee. It’s a win-win situation.
4. Consider using a reusable filter.
If you love pour-over coffee, then it’s well worth it if you consider using a reusable filter. A lot of people invest in one-time use paper filters because they’re easy to dispose of and mess-free plus they might like the brighter, sweeter taste as a result.
However, in some cases, paper filters can also leave behind residues that can affect your coffee’s flavor. Also, although they are generally cheaper per piece, the costs can add up real quick especially if you brew coffee several times a day.
Stainless steel or metal coffee drip filters can be expensive depending on the type and brand, but it can save you money in the long run because you don’t have to purchase again and again. Metal filters usually result to a visually darker coffee and more robust or full-bodied taste.
Also, you might be thinking that metal filters are a pain to clean. That may be true in some instances which is why it’s important to look for filters that are easy to clean. Kitchables Pour-Over Coffee Drip Filter is a great option because it has dual filter micro-mesh technology that’s very easy to clean. This ensures absolutely no clogging as the mesh feels like silk to the touch. It’s also dishwasher safe.
Aside from that, its stainless steel material ensures permanence unlike glass or stoneware filters that easily break or paper filters that are for one-time use only. This can reduce your carbon footprint and help save the environment one coffee cup at a time.
5. Support local coffee shops.
There are several reasons why you should. First of all, it’s not guilt-tripping over you choosing the corporate businesses over the local ones. It’s just saying that local shops are worth visiting and knowing more.
As soon as these local shops put up their businesses, they know the need of the community, and they most likely have a vision. They choose to open their business despite the risks involved. They also most likely employ people from the locality, and so this gives way to more jobs in the community.
The profits stay local so it provides significant growth of revenue to the community too. Aside from that, it’s easier to reach out to the owners because they’re most likely locals. There’s a bigger chance that they will act upon your needs right away because they are reachable.
Thus, it creates a more harmonious relationship among the people in the community. Isn’t that a great way to build genuine connections? That certainly makes the world a better place!
Now, here’s to hoping you give these 5 meaningful ways a try, and help promote positive change in the society.
Have tasted enough or so much tea in your life? Or maybe you are still starting to explore the world of tea?
Whichever it is, don’t you think it would be fun to explore more tea flavors? If you’re feeling adventurous, you can amp up your tea-drinking game by learning how to blend your own tea. It’s like making different flavors of coffee, only that you’re doing it with tea now.
Tea blending requires skill, patience, effort, imagination, and creativity. It’s an art! And the more you practice, the more you get better at it. In this process, you will need to trust your palate to be able to achieve balance in flavors. But the good thing about it is that there are no rules and fixed recipes, so you’re free to create your own.
Thus, this post is not about rules at all, but rather guidelines when you start blending your own tea and for you to achieve a tea blend that you will enjoy. So if you’re ready, we’re ready!
1. Choose your base tea.
You have to start with something – which is a base tea or primary ingredient. Begin by knowing what kind of flavor you like. Would you go for strong and bold like black tea? Or subtle and sweet like white or green tea? It’s your preference. It’s important to familiarize the flavor/s of your primary ingredient so that it will be easier for you to begin the next time you decide to blend tea again.
2. Consider the taste of tea.
In relation to the first guideline, when you’re trying to determine the tea flavor you like, try to scrutinize the taste first. Your base tea should be the largest amount of ingredient in your tea blend. Do a taste test and taste different tea types separately. You have to be able to differentiate one flavor from the other.
This helps in knowing what flavor to highlight and what flavor to keep as add-ons or accents only. To know more about the different types of tea, you can read our previous post about it -> Four Types of Tea.
3. Know all your ingredients.
In tea blending, it will be a great advantage to you if you’re familiar with many flavors. Once you already have your base tea, you can start adding your secondary ingredients. But before you even add, make sure that you have already tasted all the ingredients separately so that you can estimate if they can be blended.
Again, you can have a taste test, or have someone you know help you with determining the flavors. Once you know which ingredient to add to your base tea, add them in small amounts and not all at once. It’s always easier to add more rather than to remove. You can add other types of tea or herbs, flowers, fruits, spices, and anything you can think of as long as it’s not toxic or bad for you.
Remember that the base tea should be the dominating flavor and the secondary ingredients are just accents so it’s best not to use those that may overpower the flavor of your base tea. After coming up with the right blend, you can either try to use it right away or package and store it for future use.
4. Be precise with your measurements of the ingredients.
To achieve the best tea blend, see to it that all ingredients are accounted for and that all are even. This means that the ingredients should be similar in size and density. This ensures that no parts will block new flavors added to the blend and that the tea will taste the same from one cup to another.
Instead of using fresh ingredients, it is best to use dried ones because they have more intense flavors. Dried fruits need to be chopped into same sizes while spices needs to be crushed then mixed with your base tea. For flowers, you can use the small buds or the individual petals. For iced tea, try blending the tea with ice first to see if it’s possible to be blended.
It’s also important to make sure that you have the proper ratio of ingredients. Use the same measuring tool for each ingredient and use kitchen scale for accurate measurements. This also helps a lot when you are creating bigger batches of blends.
5. Be bold in experimenting with flavors.
Tea blending involves a lot of trial by error until you get exactly what blend/s fits your taste. Be fearless and blend with a purpose. What flavor do you really want to achieve? Start from there.
But remember that less is still more. Too much ingredients may just ruin your blend. You would want to be able to determine the taste or flavor of each ingredient. Just try to keep things simple instead of cluttered. If you have other ingredients you want to try, you can always create another blend again.
Some of the blends you can try are the following:
1. Hibiscus base + strawberry & blueberry
2. Black tea + rooibos & fragrant spices
3. Black tea + either cinnamon, cardamom, vanilla beans, cacao, or rose petals
4. Green tea + either lemongrass, matcha, mint, or ginger
5. Rooibos + either saffron, coconut, rose petals, peppermint, or ginger
Are you ready to create your own tea blend? We hope you’ve learned something from this simple guide. Remember practice makes progress!
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