The story about where and how coffee spread around the world, has acquired many legends. Here is one of them. One day the Archangel Gabriel presented to Allah amazing plant. God cooked his beans divine drink that fights sleep and sharpening the mind. And called it "kahwa" — "exciting". One of the beans accidentally fell to the ground and sprouted. When a shepherd named Kaldi was tending his goats, animals found on a Bush with bright red fruit and devoured it. Then began an unusually vigorous and moving. And then the shepherd is struck: it's all in the extraordinary fruits! According to another version, it was in the Ethiopian province of Kaffa. That's where grazed those wonderful goats, which revealed to the world this magic drink. Anyway, the rumor about the miraculous tonic tool quickly spread throughout the East.

Centuries it was believed that drinking coffee is tempting, but a rather bad habit. However, the latest research suggests that if they do not abuse it (a valid dose of caffeine is considered to be 0.3 g per day — and it's not more than two or three cups), coffee is very useful: relieves fatigue, stimulates the brain and digestive system. It has been proven that people who usually drink two or three cups of coffee a day have a more stable mentality and less susceptible to depression.

Ripened coffee is harvested by hand. In the harvest time, the pickers are organised once a week throughout the plantation, tear the ripe red coffee berries and pour them on a cloth spread out under the bushes. The fruits are immediately sorted to remove unripe or overripe.

Collected coffee berries cannot be stored for a long time, it must be immediately clear. Two cleaning methods — wet and dry.

Dry purification method traditionally used in regions with distinct periods of rain and drought. Pre-separated from garbage, immature or overripe fruit, coffee berries spread in a thin layer on a large flat surface and leave in the sun to dry.

Several times a day they mix to dried evenly. During this time they ripen, they occur in chemical changes, by which coffee gets its flavor and strength. If there's coming a rain, and at night the fruit is harvested in heaps and cover with foil.

The drying process is considered complete when the water content of the collected berries is reduced to 13 percent. This happens after about 3 weeks. Then the fruits are cleaned from the husk and remove from the envelopes of the grain of the green.

Wet cleaning method is widespread in those regions where a lot of rain, and Sunny days are not enough in order to quickly and well-dried coffee.

Ripe coffee cherries immediately after harvest is dumped into large rotating drums, where under a strong stream of water removes a large part of the soft shell of the fruit. Then they are unloaded in a special container and leave it there for as long as remnants of the pulp is not completely melted, then wash them under running water.

Washed grain is poured on level ground and left to dry in the sun. To grain is dried evenly, they are constantly stirred.

Refined grains undergo several stages of treatment: peeling, polishing, sifting, sorting, and roasting.

Roasting is a very important stage in the processing of grains. The raw coffee beans to eat is not good. During the roasting of them evaporates moisture, they become solid, easy ground and change color — from green to light and dark brown. The taste and aroma of the coffee beverage is very much dependent on the degree of roasting: the stronger it is, the more pronounced coffee bitterness and less sourness; weak roast, on the contrary, strong acidic notes and almost no bitterness. There are four degrees of roast, each of which brings its touch of taste of the same coffee variety (see below, in the section about coffee). To preserve all the flavor and beneficial properties of the coffee immediately after roasting the beans need to cool down.

Packaging — the next stage of coffee production. Coffee beans cooling after roasting emit carbon dioxide, and packaging will explode if you do not release coffee from carbon dioxide. And whole grains gas is released more slowly than from the ground. Therefore, grain coffee is Packed in packages with a ventilation valve, which allows you to get carbon dioxide out but not let inside the oxygen. This package is called gas.

And ground coffee is placed in a vacuum packaging — briquettes, of which carbon dioxide is first pull the vacuum and then tightly sealed. Coffee printed package for a long time can not be stored, since under the influence of oxygen the fats in the coffee beans are oxidized, and made of them a drink loses taste and aroma.

Since coffee drinking in coffeehouses; in different Nations and different languages, these institutions have different names. The first coffeehouses were opened in Mecca in the 12th century. Very soon they had spread across the Arab world and turned into a lucrative place, where the visitors played chess, gossiped, sang and listened to music. They soon became centres of political activity, which caused dissatisfaction of the authorities. In the following decades, coffee houses were banned, then allowed again. The problem was resolved after the introduction of the tax on them.

For a long time the Arabs had a monopoly on coffee. To save her, they carefully made sure that not one grain was not taken to the "foreign land". To do this, they even specially "spoilt" — was scraping with the grain the outer shell, so they lost the germinating ability. However, in 1615, Venetian merchants still managed to bring coffee to Europe. At first it was sold as a medicine that relieves fatigue, increases mental alertness and sharpen your perception. And only in 1683 — all in the same Venice was the first European coffeehouses.

In Russia coffee was in two ways: from the East and from the West. "Eastern route" was through trade routes from the countries of the Middle East. However, advanced coffee on Russian soil with difficulty. Much more significant was the influence of the West, but rather decisive action of Peter I, inspired by European traditions. After returning from Holland, he simply commanded to drink coffee on his famous "assemblies".

In Russia the first coffee house was opened in 1740 in St. Petersburg by decree of Empress Anna Ioannovna. In Moscow the first coffee establishment is located on Tverskaya street, in the same building, where later was the famous filippovskaya bakery.

Working in the coffee shop of a specialist in coffee preparation in many countries is called a Barista.

Species and varieties

Today coffee is grown in South and Central America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia — about 80 countries located in the so-called "coffee belt". The largest suppliers are Brazil and Colombia, followed by Indonesia, Vietnam and Mexico. Some countries, such as Kenya, Jamaica and Yemen, put the coffee in small quantities, but of high quality.

Family of plants, which includes coffee, has about seventy species. However, the main only two — Arabica and Robusta. This evergreen shrub with oval dark green leaves. In the dry season they are covered with white flowers, flowering continues until the first rains. Then the flowers turn into dark red fruits — coffee cherries. Since flowering to fruit ripening Arabica is 5-7 months. Robusta coffee ripens a bit longer — up to 9-11 months.

Arabica (Arabian coffee tree) — the plant is very demanding. He needs a strong and regular rainfall, average temperature plus 15 to 24 C, deep fertile soil. The drink, brewed from Arabica beans, the flavor and aroma more delicate than drink from Robusta. Almost 80% of the produced today, the ground coffee is Arabica.

The word mild (Mild) refer to higher category of coffees, including the best varieties of Arabica; this designation is assigned only to high quality coffee, collected at an altitude of 1000-1500 meters above sea level; a more complete name of this category — "soft coffee, grown in highland plantations.

Coffee tree Robusta cafora fairly undemanding, grows in Equatorial forests and savannas of the Congo basin. It resists to high temperature and high humidity. Drink from his beans is more bitter, without the subtle flavor. Robusta is mainly used for the preparation of coffee blends/blends.

The third in importance and the number of the world's coffee variety after Arabica and Robusta) — liberica. Liberica is characterized by weak caffeine content, strong aroma and weak, unsaturated taste. Pure liberica is not intended for export, mainly used in the regions of growth. Used in the composition of coffee blends to enhance the flavor of the drink.

The fourth largest coffee — the excelsa, the least common, having no commercial value and are used primarily in the composition of coffee blends to enhance the flavor of the drink.

According to experts, the coffees not less than wines. Although until the early twentieth century the lovers of this drink was known only monosortovoy coffee made from beans picked from a single plantation.

Monosort usually called by the name of the country in which grown coffee ("Kenya", "Colombia"), or smaller administrative units (city, province, state, region or even a port, from which grain is exported, such as Brazilian Santos. There are varieties, named after the mountain peaks (Kilimanjaro) and ranges ("blue mountain").

Over time, coffee became more popular, and manufacturers began mixing the grains with different trees, plantations and crops. Did it to, highlighting the advantages of each class to create specific, characteristic only for this brand taste and aroma and support them during the whole period of production. The mixture, which is made from beans of different coffee varieties, usually referred to as blend or a blend.

In fact now known coffees are trademarks of the manufacturers.

Most known today for varieties are blends. Different coffee varieties get, mixing from two to fourteen varieties of coffee beans. Coffee certain varieties especially appreciated the variety of flavors with some fruity acidity dominates, others nutty tones, there is even a coffee wine flavor.

Coffees vary in the degree of roasting. When frying the first few minutes the bean remains light-yellowish and have a "grassy" smell, then the smoke appears with a more fragrant scent and soon you hear the "first crack" — a distinct sound signal, at what stage is roasting. Thereafter, the active caramelization of the sugars contained in the grains, and essential oils gradually come to light. The grains increase in size and become darker. At this point, usually you hear the "second crack", the color of the beans becomes darker and the smoke is thick and pungent in this phase are completely burned sugar. There are many types of coffee roasting, each of which gives your flavor same kind of coffee. In General, each type of roast can be attributed to one of the four basic levels of roasting — weak, medium, strong or higher.

  • cinnamon roast (Cinnamon Roast), the approximate temperature of 195°C, the light roasting, the grains turn a light brown color with a light rich flavor, noticeable acidity and a subtle aroma of bread, oil on the surface is absent;
  • light or new England roast (Light or New England Roast), the approximate temperature of 205°C, light roast, in which the grains have a light brown color, slightly darker than cinnamon roast. The taste still has a pronounced acidity, but without the cereal notes. Oil on the surface is still missing;
  • American roast (American Roast), the approximate temperature of 210°C, medium light brown color, immediately after "first crack", oil is still missing on the surface; the name of this roast was due to its popularity in the Eastern United States; often this roast (and cinnamon) is used during a professional tasting coffee;
  • city roast (City Roast), the approximate temperature of 220°C; dark roast; rich brown, still, dry surface; roasting is popular in the Western United States and is also well suited for coffee tastings;
  • full city roast (Full City Roast), the approximate temperature of 225°C; the oil droplets start appearing on the surface of the grains; the taste is dominated by caramel and chocolate notes; the beginning of the "second roll";
  • Vienna roast (Vienna Roast), the approximate temperature of 230°C; dark roast; moderate dark brown color with a slightly oily surface; the emergence of a sweetish-bitter, caramel notes on the palate; acidity is going to a minimum, giving way to saturation; in the middle of the "second roll"; sometimes this roast used for espresso;
  • French roast (French Roast), the approximate temperature of 240°C, dark brown color, shiny oily surface; acidity is virtually absent, on the palate there are burnt notes; at the end of the "second crack"; popular roast for espresso;
  • Italian roast (Italian Roast), the approximate temperature of 245°C, a very dark brown color, grain is covered with oil; roast similar to the French, only with a more pronounced taste; the common roast for espresso; roasting Spanish (Spanish Roast), the approximate temperature of 250°C, the dark roast; the beans are very dark, almost black and very oily surface; very few coffees kept the Spanish roast, without turning the taste to ashes.

Or sell coffee beans, either ground or instant. Ground coffee, i.e., ground coffee beans varies according to the type of grinding (see about this in the section about making coffee).

To instant coffee coffee drinkers are often taken lightly, but in terms of sales it is not inferior to coffee bean and molotow coffee. Instant coffee was first introduced to the public in 1901 — American exhibition in Buffalo and immediately caused a lively debate. Today, however, many can not imagine their day without this drink.

For the preparation of instant coffee almost never used the famous Arabica: fragrant but not too strong, in the "powder" she practically loses its characteristic taste. From Robusta — strong African varieties, which of caffeine in two times more than Arabica coffee is more intense.

For those who prefer instant coffee, you need to know that the intense pressure changes the molecular structure of grains and beneficial properties and wonderful aroma and taste of coffee are lost.

Depending on the production technology of instant coffee is of three types: powder, granulated and freeze-dried.

  1. Powdered coffee is the cheapest method of production of instant coffee. Roasted beans finely ground, then within a few hours is treated under pressure with hot water. The resulting infusion is filtered, and the extract is sprayed into chambers filled with hot inert gases. On-the-fly the droplets of the extract shrivel and dry into a powder..
  2. Granulated coffee. Its production is similar to production of powder. The only difference is that the finished coffee powder under pressure of steam down in small clumps, and the coffee is not as powder and as granules.
  3. Freeze-dried coffee. For the production of freeze-dried (also called freeze dry coffee coffee extract is frozen at very low temperatures. Then it was dehydrated in a vacuum at low pressure. Dehydrated mass is crushed and receive crystals irregular shapes that we see in coffee jars. This is the most expensive way of instant coffee production, but it allows to preserve the useful properties of coffee beans, their taste and aroma.

There are finally a variety of coffee drinks, such as carrot coffee or chicory. To this coffee, they are not related, although in its own way very interesting.

How to cook

Grinding. As roasting, milling the coffee beans is an important step for the manifestation of the flavor of the drink. To brew coffee immediately after grinding. For different methods of brewing coffee need a different grind.

  • Rude, or coarse grind (coarse grind) is suitable for brewing in a piston coffee maker (French press) or in any vessel-the pot.
  • Medium grind (medium grind) can be used for different methods of brewing.
  • Fine grinding (fine grind) good for preparing a beverage in coffee makers with filters.
  • Fine espresso grind (fine espresso grind) is essential for coffee machines-espresso, in which a jet of hot water passes through the milled grain.
  • A powdery-fine grind (pulverized) coffee powder similar to flour and used exclusively for cooking Turkish coffee in cezve.

Over the centuries coffee invented many variations of its preparation: once the balls from the pulp of crushed grains mixed with fat, dried brewed coffee leaves. Over time, began to appear cutting-edge coffee technology. Most popular today's five ways of obtaining flavored drink: espresso, coffee, Oriental, French press, coffee filter, coffee geyser.

Espresso is the youngest, most modern, fastest way. No wonder in their home country, in Italy, espresso is considered "coffee king". To prepare it you need coffee beans strong roast (then the drink will be characterized by a slight bitterness) and a very fine grind (fine espresso grind), preferably a mixture of Arabica and a small amount of Robusta. The drink is prepared literally in front of the espresso machine in seconds dispenses and grinds the beans, presses the coffee powder, making coffee and gives a Cup of delicious flavored drink. The presence of brown foam on the surface of the coffee — a sure sign that the espresso was excellent.

Have coffee in the Eastern, or Turkish, too, a lot of fans. Say, to properly prepare it, you need instinct: no instruction will outline the line that separates a great drink from a hopelessly ruined. You miss the moment of appearance of bubbles around the edge of the pots (aka, ibric, aka the Turk) and coffee will seethe, and so he failed.

Coffee in the East on a conventional stove Turku with water and sugar, put on a moderate fire. When the water boils, add coffee, very finely ground, stir again put on the stove and bring to a boil. Only in no case do not boil.

As soon as the edges of the "lid", formed from coffee grounds, go small bubbles, the boiling water from the fire should be removed. Then put back on the heat and again remove as soon as bubbles appear. And so two or three times (can be more). Before serving would be good to give the coffee a little to steep in boiling water under the lid.

For Turkish coffee usually take much roasted beans they give the drink a pleasant bitterness. However, the degree of roasting are not as important as for espresso, if you want you can take slightly, and sredneamgunsky coffee. But the "correct" grind (pulverized, "powdery", the most delicate of all the existing types of milling are very important. It is only when brewing coffee gives is not squeaky on the teeth the thick, thick, dense aromatic foam, which without coffee is just unthinkable. And finally, proportions. 200-250 ml of water four teaspoons (32 grams) of coffee powder.

Coffee under pressure. Making coffee in a French press piston coffee maker, invented in France in the twenties of the last century — like tea. Rinse coffee pot with boiling water, poured into his coffee coarse grind, pour boiling water and let steep for five minutes. Further, it should be lower on the piston, thus separating the grounds, and pour the finished drink cups.

Unlike the tiny cups that serve espresso and Turkish coffee, coffee from a French press, it is customary to pour in quite a large Cup (about 8-10 grams of coffee powder take approximately 120 ml of water).

Below the mesh filter is not clogged, it is better to use coffee flour. But to the bean — mixtures or specific grades, as well as to their roast — French press there are no requirements. So you can brew any coffee.

Advantages of this method are many: firstly, no need to stand over the stove, and secondly, in high-temperature flask of coffee pot, under a lid, the drink stays hot for a long time. Besides, it may be cooked in almost any conditions. Would be just water, heated to "white keys" or slightly cooled after boiling (heat the flask in the boiling water to continue boiling, which greatly impairs the taste of the drink).

Funnel for coffee. In recent times, by the time we got espresso machines, French presses and machines "sand coffee", filter coffee loses its popularity. However, cooking it is quite simple: in the funnel the coffee maker, put a paper filter and ground coffee is poured at the rate of 8-10 grams per Cup. A special ward in the water, it is heated to 100°C dripping on top of coffee powder, and a few seconds of brewed coffee drop by drop drains into the pitcher. The degree of grinding depends on the filtering time: the shorter the time during which the prepared coffee, the finer the grind needed. And Vice versa.

A coffee geyser. Machines Moka (geyser) preceded the appearance of espresso machines, and still this type of coffee maker is most widely used in Italy. The coffee pot consists of two svenciausios vessels. In the bottom pour fresh water. The built-in filter poured to the brim and lightly pressed coffee medium grind (roast — from medium to dark) at the rate of 5-7 grams per Cup. Then both halves of the pot is screwed, and depending on the model or put it on the stove, or you connect to the mains.

When heated in the bottom of the coffee it creates excess pressure and the hot water is displaced into the upper vessel through the layer of coffee powder. The problem is that the temperature of the water in such units is greater than 100° C, so drink the result is "overboiled". And, of course, he doesn't have the same creamy foam that crowns a true espresso.

Here's some of the terms associated with the preparation and supply of coffee:

  • glace (from lat. glacies "ice") — coffee with ice-cream: served in a tall conical beaker 250 ml with drinking straw for coffee and dessert spoon for ice cream;
  • demitas (from FR. demitasse "half a Cup") — a small Cup of coffee with a capacity of 60-70 ml, very thick walls hold the heat well; used mainly for espresso and for coffee in the East;
  • cappuccino — espresso with hot milk and thick milk foam in equal parts);
  • café-o-Le — coffee is weak roasted, mixed in equal proportions with very hot foamed milk;
  • Corto — variety espresso, very strong and full bodied coffee; it's made from the same amount of coffee powder as a standard espresso, but Corto is used much less water;
  • latte — a drink made from one part espresso and three parts hot milk with a small amount of milk foam, usually foam, sprinkle with grated chocolate or cocoa; sometimes add cinnamon and syrups, such as caramel, chocolate or vanilla; served in a tall glass;
  • mazbout — coffee is a medium degree of sweetness (sugar is added during the process of brewing: one teaspoon of coffee, teaspoon of sugar); a macchiato is a standard shot (30ml) with a small amount of hot frothed milk (15 ml);
  • melange (from the French. melange — "mixture") is a traditional coffee with milk (how much coffee and how much milk depends on your preferences);
  • ristretto — a very strong espresso, a portion not more than a mouthful;
  • Wes — foam, formed from ground to the powder state of coffee powder for brewing coffee in the East; laid her spoon on the Cup and then pour coffee; UES in the East is considered "a person coffee";
  • espresso Granita in Italy it is very cold and savory espresso with sweetened whipped cream; in America, it is chilled in special machines a mixture of espresso, milk and sugar;
  • espresso con Panna — hot espresso coffee with whipped cream sprinkled with grated chocolate.

Here are a few coffee tips:

  1. coffee you intend to brew in the pot, you should not grind too finely, but for pots, the seeds must be literally ground into dust;
  2. boil the coffee in any case impossible — acids, which are released in the boiling process, can spoil and smell, and taste; however, bring to a boil it's a must, otherwise it will not have time to stand aromatic substances;
  3. to smell "the real thing", wait five minutes and only then pour the beverage cups;
  4. it is impossible to keep already brewed coffee over half an hour — beans a lot of fat that can become rancid; the pot should be thoroughly washed after each coffee is deposited on the walls of the fats will ruin the taste of fresh coffee.

We will add that ground, and instant coffee is often become ingredients for various dishes — from coffee and chocolate to cakes and liquors.

How to choose and store

A person who is knowledgeable in coffee, first drew attention to the type of product — whole bean coffee, ground coffee, instant coffee. When choosing a coffee important grade — country of origin, brand, monosortovoy or blend, which blend (of at least the percentage of Arabica and Robusta), roasting, and grinding, etc.

In bulk sold only coffee beans.

High quality natural ground coffee is usually Packed in vacuum briquettes. If it looks bland, so he overiden.

The average shelf life of natural ground coffee — 18 months.

High quality instant coffee, generally Packed in glass or tin can. View the product: no unnecessary ingredients (chicory, barley, etc.) must not be, otherwise it is not coffee and coffee drink. The bottom of the packaging granulated and freeze-dried coffee should not be powder.

Keep coffee in a cool dark place (but not refrigerated), in a tightly sealed ceramic or glass container, it is desirable to leave as little space between the surface of the coffee and the lid of the vessel. If coffee is stored in a soft pack, it is better to squeeze out the air and tightly seal, such as tape.