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fatCoffee® Spiced Chocolate

Ground Cocoa Powder

There is a cafe not far from where I live – I often pass by as I walk to or from my office, but almost never stop in. They are open from 6PM to Midnight, which isn’t terribly convenient if you want a cup of coffee in the morning. But the owner is known for his hot chocolate, and for attempting to make the World’s Strongest Espresso shot.

I actually had one of those once, and not entirely on purpose. It was a Saturday afternoon, and we’d just finished walking down through the 9th Street Market, and were headed home. I needed something to perk me up for the afternoon, and we stopped in for a cup of coffee.

“How about an espresso,” René asked, “it’s really good, I make it wonderfully.”

“Sure,” I said. I was in a rush, anything would do.

René then proceeded to run water through the espresso machine to clear it out – about 23 gallons of steaming hot water. “Most people don’t bother to clean the machine but once a day, and you have to clean it every single time or the coffee will be horrible.” He started tapping out freshly ground coffee into the filter – I’m sure I heard that handle snap 12 or 13 times. Every third or fourth snap he tamped the grounds down, and then snapped the filter into the machine and began pumping water through it.

What came out was impossibly thick, almost syrupy, and topped with an almost-solidified crema. I downed it in two quick sips, paid my $6, and left.

My family, who had gone in with me, and left a few minutes earlier (the kids were antsy) and I jogged to catch up with them. About 5 strides in, I noticed the strangest thing: my feet weren’t actually touching the ground any more. I was coasting down the sidewalk, about 4 inches above the concrete, the air in my wake swirling under the hot summer sun.

When I caught up with my family, my wife reminded me that the kids would need to nap when we got home.

“YeahIthinkthatsagreatideaIthinkImgoingtocleantheyardandmaybemakesomedinnerandpossiblystraightenoutthebasement,” I replied.

“What’s wrong with you,” she asked.

“NothingIfeelgreatIthinkmaybethatcoffeewasalittlestrongandmaybehadmorethanoneortwoshotsinitIcantbesureitwasreallygoodthrough.”

“You’re sweating. A lot. Are you sure you’re ok?”

“Yeahdefinitelynoproblemfeelinggreatshouldwebegettinghomenowwhyistheskyturningpurple?”

About an hour later I finally hit the ground. It was a soft landing, mostly, and the sweating had stopped. I’m pretty sure it took another 30 minutes before my heart stopped pounding.

René also makes a mean cup of hot chocolate, so I’ve heard. This recipe is partly inspired by that, but with no sugar it provides quite a different experience. Make this with a cup of mild coffee, or 14 shots of espresso, whichever you prefer.

Ingredients

Preparation

  • Add all ingredients to a blender or small, tightly-sealable water bottle
  • Close lid securely, and shake/blend for 45-60 seconds (a little longer with water/tea than coffee.)
  • Open carefully, pour into a mug and enjoy!
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fatCoffee® Turmeric Tea

A picture of whole and ground turmeric, a root

I love spicy food, and a hot curry (at least, the Americanized versions I usually encounter) tends to fit the bill quite nicely.

But there was that one time in 2001, at Minar Palace, back when it was a narrow little spot on Chestnut Street in Philadelphia. I’d ordered Chicken Vindaloo, and was happily munching away while at a table full of friends and family.

And then, suddenly, I noticed the view in front of me receding, as if I were suddenly whooshing backwards at a fantastic speed. Swirling patches dotted my peripheral vision, and I heard a clearly-audible “SNAP” emanate from somewhere between the back of my throat and the top of my head. I remember trying to speak the word “hot”, but all that came out was a high-pitched and unintelligible hiss from somewhere deep, dark, and forbidden within: “Haaaaaaaugh…. haaaaaaaugh… haaaaaaaugh…….”

When I’d finally managed to spit out the offending seed, and mash enough dry bread into my mouth to quell the rebellion, I made a mental note to swear off foods that ended in guttural sounds like “oooo” and “gaaaaagh” and “nugget”.

And yet, inspiration lingers. For from the same traditions comes a spice with a variety of medicinal uses: turmeric.

Yes, turmeric, the yellow spice that’s normally a staple of curries and French’s Yellow Mustard, has some rather fantastic qualities.

The taste is slightly bitter, which pairs well with a robust, smokey coffee. But in truth, this works best with just hot water (though if you’re looking for a caffeine boost you can pair this with something like a green or black tea.)

Ingredients

Preparation

  • Add all ingredients to a blender or small, tightly-sealable water bottle
  • Close lid securely, and shake/blend for 45-60 seconds (a little longer with water/tea than coffee.)
  • Open carefully, pour into a mug and enjoy!
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fatCoffee® Hot Cup of Pie

An apple pie with a lattice crust

From my personal experience, I can say that making coffee with butter tends to result in a smoother, more even effect from the caffeine – rather than a strong jolt about 20 minutes after finishing my cup, I find that the energy lift lasts for a few hours. Your mileage may vary.

I used to drink about 14-16 cups of coffee a day. I used to make a fresh pot – at 11PM. It seemed to have little effect on my sleep, but eventually it had very little effect on my wakefulness either. Since I’ve started drinking butter coffee, I find I need 2-3 cups/day, max.

But in the evenings, or if you just don’t want the caffeine, it’s helpful to have another option. This one’s pretty freakin’ awesome.

Butter (and fats in general) tend to be flavor-enhancers, and when combined with an herbal tea infused with fruits, the result is something like a hot, decadent cup of pie. Sweet without sugar, smooth and warming straight through.

I usually do this late in the evening, an hour or two before bed.

Ingredients

Preparation

  • Add tea bag and 8-oz of hot water to a blender or small, tightly-sealable water bottle
  • Let tea seep for 5-7 minutes
  • Remove tea bag, and add 1 packet of fatCoffee®
  • Close lid securely, and shake/blend for 45-60 seconds
  • Open carefully, pour into a mug and enjoy!