Drink three cups a day and you could live longer. 🙌 You pour it without thinking (or more likely to help you start thinking) but there’s a fascinating backstory behind your morning cup of coffee. Here’s what goes into each cup of brewed beans — err, seeds.
Legend has it that 9th-century goat herders noticed the effect caffeine had on their goats, who appeared to “dance” after eating the fruit of the Coffea plant. A local monk then made a drink with the produce and found that it kept him awake at night, thus the original cup of coffee was born.
They’re the pits of the cherry-like berries found on the flowering shrubs, but we call them “beans” because of the resemblance to legumes.
Early on, people mixed coffee berries with fat to create an energy-rich snack ball, according to PBS. They would also ferment the pulp to make a wine-like drink (yum!?).
Growers predominantly plant the Arabica species. Although less popular, Robusta tastes slightly more bitter and contains more caffeine.
Today, Brazil produces about third of the world’s supply, according to the International Coffee Organization, about twice as much as the second place holder, Vietnam.
Kona coffee is the United States’ gift to the coffee world. Because coffee traditionally grows best in climates along the equator, Hawaii’s weather is optimal for harvesting beans. California also recently got into the coffee game with dozens of farms now churning out pricey premium bags.
This refers to the way espresso is made — forcing boiling water through pressed coffee grounds. And although espresso has more caffeine per volume than coffee, it would take three shots to equal the amount in a regular cup of joe.
One of the most coveted varieties comes from the feces of an Asian palm civet. The cat-like creature eats fruit including coffee cherries, but is unable to digest the beans. The excreted seeds produce a smooth, less acidic brew called kopi luwak, but the means of production has drawn criticism from animal welfare activists.
Back in 1511, leaders in Mecca believed it stimulated radical thinking and outlawed the drink. Some 16th-century Italian clergymen also tried to ban coffee because they believed it to be “satanic.” However, Pope Clement VII loved coffee so much that he lifted the ban and had coffee baptized in 1600.
Even as recently as the 18th century, the Swedish government made both coffee and coffee paraphernalia (including cups and dishes) illegal for its supposed ties to rebellious sentiment.
Don’t worry, you would need to drink about 30 cups in a very short period time to get close to a lethal dose of caffeine, Vox reports.
The average adult Finn goes through 27.5 pounds of coffee each year, according to the International Coffee Organization. Compare that to a measly 11 pounds per American.
Research has linking moderate consumption (about three to four cups per day) with a longer life span, plus a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s, according to Harvard Health Publishing.
The 3,487-gallon serving earned a Guiness World Record in 2012.
In the lead up to the Revolutionary War, it became patriotic to sip java in lieu tea, of PBS reveals. The Civil War also made the drink more pervasive because it helped energize tired troops.
An eight-ounce brewed cup of decaf coffee actually contains two to 12 milligrams of caffeine, the Mayo Clinic states. In comparison, a regular cup of coffee supplies between 95 to 200 milligrams, while one can of cola has aout 23 to 35 milligrams of caffeine.
Qahwah later became kahveh in Turkish, and then koffie in Dutch, which is where we get the English word coffee.
You can now order grande lattés at more than 29,000 locations around the globe, 47 years after the first store launched in Seattle.
Adding sweeteners, cream, and other mix-ins can quickly jack up the total. A venti Java Chip Frappuccino from Starbucks contains 88 grams of sugar and 600 calories — more than a McDonald’s Big Mac!
Our nation’s 26th president loved coffee so much that one of his son’s described his custom cup as “more in the nature of a bathtub,” according to Smithsonian.com. On a 1907 visit to Andrew Jackson’s former estate, the commander in chief supposedly dubbed a cup of Maxwell House joe “good to the last drop,” a catchphrase still used today.
The recently renamed doughnut chain did the math on its customizable java drinks. It sells 2 billion cups globally per year, enough for customers to pick each option 80,000 times.
Save your leftover beans for a DIY scrub. “Coffee grounds are physical exfoliators that can lift off dead skin cells, making skin feel smooth and look brighter,” says Good Housekeeping Beauty Lab chemist Danusia Wnek. “And caffeine is thought to improve blood circulation in skin, but there isn’t yet sufficient clinical data on its use in topical products.”
If you learn one thing from us let it be this: coffee knowledge is not useless knowledge. It can be used for many things. For instance, telling someone that in fact, coffee is not dehydrating when they’re explaining their detox to you is a great party trick. Or how about when you’re standing at the coffee machine in your office and someone walks over and you mention to them that the first web cam was invented to watch the coffee machine and make sure it was never empty. BAM. Below read some of the top things you should know about coffee but you may have never heard before.
While many people think that coffee is a diuretic, recent studies have shown that this isn’t the case. Unless you are consuming over 700 mg of caffeine per day, the bodies liquid output is as same as the input.
A coffee belt probably exists somewhere in the world (let us know), the coffee belt actually refers to the area near the equator where coffee can be grown. It’s basically an imaginary line that shows the regions in each continent in which coffee is grown.
Death Wish Coffee is a dark roast and it is the World’s Strongest, but one doesn’t beget the other. You will get more caffeine in your brew because of the types of beans and the coffee to water ratio.
Coffee is grown on a bush, inside of a berry. Go ahead and count it as fruit.
Letting your coffee bloom is one of the biggest secrets in creating the perfect cup. Coffee retains carbon dioxide when it is roasted. When it is ground, the beans release the gas and when hot water is poured on it the gasses release even quicker. The bloom is the result of this and is important because the flavor is trapped in the carbon dioxide gasses.
Cold brew coffee is made using fresh, filtered cold water under 40 degrees. Because there is no hot water, the oils that make the coffee acidic are not pulled through.
While it is a fact that you can overdose on caffeine, it would take about 100 cups of coffee for this to happen.
Coffee is a brewed beverage made from the roasted seeds, or “beans,” of the coffee plant. The coffee plant is a shrub native to subtropical regions of Africa and Asia, although the plant is now cultivated throughout Central and South America as well.
Once the berries of the coffee plant are harvested, the flesh is removed and discarded, leaving only the seed. Prior to roasting the beans have a grey-green color and are referred to as green coffee; because the beans are shelf stable at this point, they are sold and shipped green.
Coffee beans vary in their size, shape, color, and flavor depending on the region and conditions in which they were grown. The range of unique flavors and aromas between regional varietals is as expansive as the variety of wine available from different vineyards. It is well worth experimenting with different varietals to discover a bean perfect for your palate.
Most regional varietals will fall into two main categories, Robusta or Arabica.
Arabica coffee is considered superior to Robusta because of its delicate flavor and low acidity. This variety is grown at higher altitudes and can be more difficult and costly to grow. These labor-intensive, low-yield plants produce a high-demand bean that sells for a higher price.
Robusta coffee tends to have a more acidic and harsh flavor than Arabica as well as higher levels of caffeine. Robusta can be grown at lower altitudes, in hotter climates, and with less moisture. Since Robusta has fewer growing restrictions and has a generally less desirable flavor, it is usually sold for a lower price than Arabica beans. Most mass-market commercial beans are of the Robusta variety.
To prepare the green coffee bean for brewing, it must first be roasted. Coffee beans are roasted with dry heat and with constant agitation to ensure even heating. The range of roasts varies from light golden brown all the way to a dark, almost black appearance. Varying the roasting time has a significant effect on the flavor, aroma, and color of the brewed coffee. Although there are several levels of roasting, they can be grouped into three main categories: light, medium, and dark.
Light roasts provide the lightest, most delicate flavors and can often be more acidic. Because there is less of a roasted flavor, the original flavor of the bean is allowed to shine through. High-quality beans or varietals with very distinct flavors are often roasted light to allow the original flavor to remain prominent. These beans will appear dry, as the bean has not been heated to the point where the oil is extracted. Light roasts include: Cinnamon, American, Half-City, and New England Roasts.
Medium-roasted beans will have a chocolate brown color, dry surface, and a full flavor. These beans will have less acidity than lightly roasted beans and a slightly sweet, toasty flavor. Due to the balanced flavor and acidity, this is the most popular roast within the major commercial coffee market. Medium roasts are also known as Full City, Breakfast, or Regular Roast.
Dark-roasted coffee is roasted until the sugars begin to caramelize and the oils begin to rise to the surface of the bean. Depending on the darkness of the roast, the bean may have a slight sheen or an oily appearance. The flavor of dark-roasted beans is strong, smoky, and sometimes spicy. The original flavor of the bean is overpowered by the roasted flavor and therefore lower quality beans are often used for darker roasts. Although these roasts have a low acidity, they are often described as bitter. Roasts that fall within the dark category include French, Viennese, Italian, and Espresso.
Blends: To achieve unique flavor profiles, many roasters will create custom blends of beans with two or more roasting levels. This provides a depth of flavor and complexity that cannot be achieved with a single roast.
Coffee is perhaps most prized for its caffeine content. The caffeine content in a cup of coffee varies widely depending on the type of bean used and the brewing method. While most of the caffeine is removed during the decaffeination process, trace amounts may still remain. The international standard for decaffeination requires that 97% of the caffeine be removed from decaffeinated coffee while the European Union’s standards require no less than 99.9% to be removed.
Most methods of decaffeination follow the same basic principle: the beans are soaked in water, which allows the caffeine (and other chemicals responsible for flavor) to leach out of the beans. The extracted liquid is then either passed through a filter or mixed with a solvent to remove only the caffeine and leave the other beneficial compounds. The flavor-rich, caffeine deficient solution is then re-introduced to the beans to allow the flavor to be reabsorbed.
The Swiss Water Method has gained popularity in recent years because it uses only water to remove caffeine but the process is long and laborious. Other solvents used in the decaffeinating process include carbon dioxide, ethyl acetate, or triglycerides. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages including cost, time, labor, and effect on the final flavor.
Research is being conducted to produce coffee plants that are deficient in the caffeine synthase gene and therefore do not produce caffeine. This would eliminate the need for the decaffeination process and would not only reduce costs but it would also keep the original flavor of the bean completely intact.
Proper storage of coffee has a great impact on the flavor of the brewed cup. Enemies to coffee’s flavor include heat, oxygen, light, and moisture. Most commercial coffee today is sold in vacuum-sealed bags with one-way valves to allow gasses to escape while keeping oxygen out. Once the seal on the bag is broken, extra care must be taken to keep the beans fresh.
At home, coffee beans should be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark, and dry place. Although some people advocate keeping coffee beans in either the refrigerator or freezer, this can present issues with exposure to circulating air, excess humidity, and absorption of rogue flavors.
After roasting or once the seal is broken on a vacuum-sealed bag, it is best to use the beans within two weeks. For this reason, buy only the quantity of coffee that will be used within two weeks to maintain freshness and flavor.
Can these toys actually help improve our children’s attention, and what’s behind the sudden fidget toy craze?
A short time ago, fidget spinners were the most popular toy worldwide. An absolute trend.
If you never saw them before, here’s what they look like. These are usually small triangular toys with a ball bearing in the middle that enables it to spin. The user holds the center, and balances, spins, or twirls the toy in their hands.
However, the time of fidget spinners has gone. A new toy is here to take their place – the squishy. Some think that these are typical stress balls that you can squeeze, but they really aren’t.
Squishies are the next big thing in the world of toys. Adrienne Appell, the director of strategic communications for the Toy Association, says that we can expect a squishy craze in the next year.
But, why are these fidget toys on the rise? Some say that it is because they increase a child’s attention span, but is there any proof?
According to Adrienne, it is because it’s a lot easier for toys to go viral.
Kids are learning about interesting new toys on social media, and luckily, most of these new toys are collectible and inexpensive.
According to psychologists, these toys do have a beneficial effect. They can help a child’s attention. In the world where everything is readily available, and two-year-olds can use iPads, kids experience a lot of boredom, and it happens quickly. Telling your kid to sit still and focus just won’t work, but if you give them a background stimuli, like a squishy toy, they might focus more on the task at hand.
According to a 2006 study, this works perfectly. Children who got stress balls paid more attention in class, their attitude was better, and they were spending more time interacting with their peers.
According to psychologists, these toys help people be ”on” – they make your brain perform an action repetitively, which leads to you being able to focus the rest of your attention elsewhere.
While these toys were primarily designed for children, many parents and students tend to start using them. Repetitive, rhythmic actions these toys provide promote dopamine production in our brains, which, in turn, stimulates pleasure and reward centers.
The only challenge here is making sure that these fidget toys won’t become a distraction with their multitude of colors, shapes, and scents.
If these toys can allow us to stimulate our minds quietly, that’s one thing, but if they start distracting everyone around us, then they aren’t doing their job correctly.
*Beanie Babies – these PVC-pellet filled animal-shaped bean bags swept the world in the 90s.
*GAK – Nickelodeon and Matel worked together to create this one. This slimy toy was an absolute hit. There was a version that glows in the dark, as well as those with scents, and bubble ones. A must-have during the 90s.
*Stress balls – When the first stress ball came out in 1988, it wasn’t that popular, because it released a glass breaking sound upon impact. When they started making them out of polyurethane foam, their popularity grew.
*Hulahoops – the first worldwide toy craze was in the 1950s, and the hula hoop was to blame. Children were able to release extra energy through rhythmic motions of the hoop. Soon enough, the adults started playing with these as well.
953 E Grand St,
Contact: +1 908-469-4626