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Coffee and spice with all things nice

Cooking with coffee, entertaining with coffee, studying with coffee – it works every way. 

Australian coffee drinkers are full of beans, keeping up with their American cousins, as coffee consumption shows no sign of slowing down (under). According to the NCA, a whopping 59% of coffee consumed daily is classified as “gourmet”, and it is the younger population that are driving this trend. There is a raft of healthy recipes emerging, from coconut cappuccinos to golden lattes, and one thing is for sure – coffee is on a health kick. For 2017 it was all about looks, as we stared lovingly at rainbow lattes and licked our lips while we guzzled down the glitter. The crazier they looked, the better; but what will 2018 have in store? There is a buzz around nitro, cold-drip and siphon, but will roasting coffee take on a whole new meaning when we make the switch from drinking to cooking.
What does coffee bring to the table?
Coffee complements a host of everyday ingredients as the roasted bean can unleash a surprising diversity of flavour. It contains an impressive 800 aroma compounds, making it the ideal ingredient to balance and enhance dishes. Depending on how long a bean is roasted for, and thus how intense the flavour is, it can be matched with anything from a sweet dessert to a rich beef dish.
Cooking with Coffee
Cooking with coffee Dominique Rizzo - Photo be Athena Lamb
You can enhance the flavour of stocks, stews and soups by adding in some leftover brewed coffee – its rich, deep taste will perfectly compliment any winter warmer. Instead of throwing away any unused coffee, try pouring it into an ice-cube tray and freeze for future use.
When it comes to preparing coffee, nowadays, there are various high-tech coffee makers that can prepare your favorite brew in just seconds. With that said, if you have a bit more time to spend experimenting in the kitchen, and really want to impress your friends, then an infused coffee recipe may be just what you are looking for. Heat coffee beans slowly in your preferred medium e.g. vegetable oil, butter, milk, chicken stock. Once the flavour has infused, you can use this base to make subtle but delicious recipes, such as coffee ice-cream, coffee mayonnaise or coffee butter cream.
Furthermore, coffee adds a unique depth and bitterness to meat, particularly sweeter varieties, such as  wild duck and venison, and only a small quantity is needed to make a big impact. It also makes a great marinade for meats such as grilled chicken and duck, adding an extra depth of colour and flavour.
Roasted, blitzed, infused, marinated, however you like your beans, it’s likely you will see them springing up on the menu throughout 2018, and with Australian coffee being touted as the best in the world, you will sure be in for a tasty sensation.
Written by Lucy Stevens.