Once upon a time I had a flatmate called Justin who ate, drank, lived and breathed coffee. He worked at a coffee roastery, he installed a state-of-the-art coffee machine in our house and he happily spent hours teaching everyone how to extract the perfect espresso. He was a coffee god.
Now, this would have been great, but coffee and I just don’t get on. I love the smell of it, the science of it, the taste of it – but one sip and I generally don’t feel so good.
In Wellington, where coffee is king, this is quite the social disability. Telling someone you’ll meet them for a cup of herbal tea or a glass of water just doesn’t have quite the same ring to it. But I’m happy to sit with them while they drink their coffee and share the nuggets of coffee know-how I picked up from Justin.
The thing I remember the most is about water quality. If your water isn’t pure and fresh, then your coffee will taste dirty and stale. That’s why it’s important to clean out your coffee machine and always use filtered water when you make it. Using a water filter means you’re reducing levels of chlorine and trace heavy metals, which can be detrimental to the taste.
Easy Coffee Sorbet
If you can filter water and boil a kettle, you can make this simple sorbet. I’ve given instructions below for making it with plunger coffee grounds, but if you are a fan of instant (Justin would be appalled, but it was good enough for Elizabeth David, apparently), then by all means use it. If you’re a fan of filtered water, don’t forget to enter your recipe into the Better With BRITA competition – but hurry, entries close on June 30.
The best thing to do with this sorbet is to make it into a kind of reverse affogato – scoop the sorbet into little glasses or demi-tasse coffee cups, then pour over some cream. The cream starts to freeze in parts, making it seem very luxurious to eat.
6 Tbsp plunger grind coffee
750ml filtered water
250g raw sugar
2 egg whites
Put the coffee in a plunger. Bring the all the water to just before boiling in a kettle, then slowly pour 500ml of it over the coffee grounds. Stir briefly, then leave for four minutes to steep.
Put the sugar in a small saucepan and pour the remaining 250ml water over the top. Stir briskly to start dissolving the sugar, then put the pot over gentle heat and bring to a quiet simmer, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from the heat.
Plunge the coffee, then pour through a fine sieve into the sugar syrup (this makes sure the end sorbet isn’t gritty). Let cool, then pour into a plastic container with a lid and freeze overnight (or for at least eight hours).
Let it defrost slightly, then blend it in a food processor with the egg whites. The mixture will increase in volume and turn a lighter colour.
Pour it back into the plastic container and freeze again for a couple of hours.
Serve in scoops as directed above, add to an iced coffee or eat straight from the freezer on a hot day.
Have a great weekend, everyone x
* This post was created with the assistance of BRITA, but all opinions (and the recipe) are my own.