Summer is Knocking, Greet it With Iced Coffee

So you wanna brew iced coffee? You’re in the right place. Summers can get hot. Real hot. As a result, the scene of sitting by the fire drinking a warm cup of coffee begins to lose its romantic appeal. That’s okay. It’ll be back in the Fall.
For now, a new scene should be entering your mind: You are reading a book or newspaper on the porch. It’s warm, but not yet hot this morning. Instead of steam rolling off the top of your mug, ice floats to the top of the mason jar. You take a sip in between pages and can feel the sweet elixir cooling down your body. Bliss.
Of course, this is only possible if you know how to brew a good cup of iced coffee. Thus, I give you three iced coffee recipes that I personally enjoy and will be sporting many times throughout the summer.

1. The Basic Pour Over

Let’s start simple. This iced coffee recipe is very basic and can be built upon once you’re comfortable manipulating variables. This simple recipe can be used with any pour over brewer. I typically use the Hario V60.
  • Coffee: 20g – Medium
  • Water: 150g – 200°F
  • Ice: 150g
Boil your water, grind your coffee, and collect your ice in a tall glass. Since we’re using 150g of ice, we’re going to cut our water usage to only 150g. This may not seem like much water, but this ratio will create a good balance between the coffee and the melting ice.
Begin by pouring about 25g of water onto the bed of coffee grounds in your pour over device. Let it sit for about fifteen seconds, letting the grounds bloom and breathe. Continue pouring water slowly and evenly in a circle around the bed of the coffee. Don’t dump the water in quickly, but try to pour it in at the same right the coffee is dripping out of the bottom, producing a well-extracted cup.
After you have poured 150g of water into the coffee grounds, toss the filter, rinse the brewer, and enjoy.
Counter Culture produced an excellent video guide on this simple, adaptable method. Check it out.

Once you’ve done this several times, start experimenting with the ratios. Want more ice? Put more in. More water? Try that also!

Read, see more videos at : coffeebrewguides.com

How Coffee Can Power More Than Your Daily Wake Up

May 22 (Bloomberg) -- Arthur Kay, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder at Bio-Bean, explains his company’s process for using coffee grind waste to produce bio-fuels. He speaks on Bloomberg Television’s “The Pulse.”


Coffee drinkers eye benefits

For those who still suffer a twinge of guilt shelling out cash every morning for a cup of coffee might want to see this. An extract in coffee may prevent retinal degeneration.

Researchers at Cornell University knew that CGA (chlorogenic acid) has been associated with weight loss and lower blood pressure.

As if that's not enough justification for that morning cup or two, those researchers set out to see if CGA could prevent hypoxia (oxygen deprivation) in the retina. Their hunch turned out to be correct.

The findings were published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry not long after newspapers published articles about coffee prices having doubled in the past year.(A severe drought in Brazil ruined roughly a third of the world's coffee crop.)

At least as prices reach consumers, scientists are brewing some comfort. Coffee may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, increase energy, lower the risk of dementia, fight depression and extend people's lives.

And now we have reason to think that coffee might also ward off macular generation and glaucoma.

It's another good reason to wake up and smell the coffee.

Source: postandcourier.com

Keeping coffee on the table: Record Global Development Alliance announced to rebuild Central American coffee industry

COLLEGE STATION – A Texas A&M AgriLife project, the largest of its type awarded to date, aims to help reconstruct a Central American coffee industry still recovering from a coffee rust disease epidemic that has devastated the region.

The coffee rust epidemic in Central America

According to estimates, the coffee rust epidemic in the harvest season of late 2012 alone cost the coffee industry in Central America more than $1 billion.

The U.S. Agency for International Development has announced an almost $5 million partnership with Texas A&M University entities and others on a Global Development Alliance to focus on research efforts in coffee-producing regions of Central America, the Caribbean and Peru.

The alliance is led by World Coffee Research and the Norman Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture in College Station, both programs of Texas A&M AgriLife Research.

Project partners include coffee research and development institutions from Costa Rica, Honduras, Guatemala, Panama, Dominican Republic and Jamaica, the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center, the Feed the Future initiative of USAID, the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development and the Federal University of Vicosa.

The project seeks primarily to rebuild livelihoods and food security for smallholder farmers whose income was ravaged by the rust epidemic. As such, research will focus on establishing an improved Central American coffee sector through plantation renovation with high quality, disease resistant coffee varieties and a constant pipeline of newer, higher performing varieties.

The rust epidemic cost the Central American coffee industry $1 billion in the harvest season of late 2012 alone, according to Dr. Tim Schilling, executive director of World Coffee Research.

“We are confident in this alliance’s ability to turn things around for the Central American coffee producer who has been hit hard with a double-whammy of leaf rust and low prices,” Schilling said. “Central America must shoot for the higher end of the market and this alliance will allow that to happen by providing high-quality, rust-resistant varieties tailored for specific eco-geographic zones.”

Source: agrilife.org

The Declining Coffee Harvest

A fungus called “coffee rust” has caused declining harvests of Guatemalan coffee in the last two years. Luis Antonio, a coffee bean farmer, says the spread of the fungus is threatening his livelihood.

Source: nytimes.com

Coming soon, a College Degree in Coffee

The University of California, Davis, has launched a coffee research center, and hopes to offer college degrees in coffee

The coffee export industry is a $20 billion affair, with money primarily flowing from rich nations to poor, where the beans are typically picked by hand. The's industry complex web might mix arabica beans from Brazil with robusta beans from Vietnam, as it creates different brews and blends to stave off booms and busts. Such a massive industry will eventually attract serious research—not just into the economics and agriculture of creating the product, but the science and subtlties of its consumption, too.  
To fill this niche, says Maanvi Singh for NPR's The Salt, the University of California, Davis, has launched a research center devoted to the study of coffee. It aims both to develop the science of brewing the perfect cup and to better understand what benefits there might be to our collective caffeine habit. The UC Davis Coffee Center says it's looking for industry partners on projects like these:
An analysis of the microbiota on coffee beans could lead to a new field of coffee terroir. A sensory perspective on coffee drinking would determine the optimal temperatures and conditions to ensure maximum flavor – at a personalized level. The natural fermentation of coffee berries could produce selective prebiotics that find their way to the consumer’s gut microbiota. And research could address the question:  why is coffee consumption associated with protection from metabolic diseases?
While they're starting with courses and conferences, “[i]f all goes well, Davis might start offering a major in coffee science within the next few years," Singh says.
Source: smithsonian.com