Friday, August 07, 2009

Coffee Please

Coffee Time, originally uploaded by Nuran's.
My morning started with coffee, which is unusual. I walked up to the barrista at Blenz on Robson and asked for 400gr ground coffee, with the highest caffeine content. She looked at me puzzled (I usually order tea, and when I do order a coffee, it's always decaf). As it turns out, coffee that is light or medium roast has more caffeine, something I never knew (or cared to know) before. I got an organic, fair trade medium roast from Machu-Pichu, which smelled and tasted deliciously of moccha, and took off.

I totally lucked out with my very first trial of Guilt sugar scrubs, I think I nearly nailed it down in the first try. Which is not the case with my other "victim" - the Finjan Sugar Scrub, where coffee is used for its cellulite-busting caffeine, along with grapefruit essential oil.

On my first trial (done about a year or so ago) I used real Turkish coffee which already had some cardamom in it. It smelled delicious, looked like the muddy bottom of a Turkish coffee demitasse ready to be read you the future, and it had this wonderful cocoa butter, shea butter and virgin coconut oil in it. Unfortunately, it did not work: the butter solidified and formed crystals on the top of the jar (kind of like the white stuff you see on old chocolate bars), which of course wouldn't matter once you scoop out your scrubbing dosage. But therein lay the bigger problem: Turkish coffee, while it smells fabulous, is ground quite finely. It becomes into a sticky fine paste that refuses to leave the skin even if scrubbed with loofah, completely defeating the purpose of its presence in a sugar scrub. And this is why I got the coarsely ground medium roasted full of caffeine beans from Machu-Pichu.

But my new sugar scrub encountered other problems beside the coffee grounds: this time around, I became a little too adventurous and rather than sticking to my modified formula from last time, I decided to add a little bit of this (honey) and a little bit of that (Turkey red oil) and ended up with something that was a little too liquidy and swallowed all the fragrance of the precious oils I've added in there - Rose Maroc, jasmine from India, cardamom CO2, orange and grapefruit oils. I finally was able to adjust the consistency by adding more sugar, and getting the fragrance right by using rose geranium. I now know that I should forego the Rose Maroc next time (it just gets lost in the coffee!). And also I should use a lot less Turkey red oil, and in any case, I suspect the one I have is a little too old, so it's time to buy new supply! But I'm on the right track, and pretty close to figuring out the desired consistency, as this sugar scrub really left my skin feeling softer, though I suspect the Turkey red oil is a little too drying (all the more reason to use less).

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At August 26, 2009 3:11 AM, Anonymous Mahir said...

Turkish coffee can be prepared with many different additional ingredients -from cardamom to whiskey!-

The link below shows some interesting recipes:


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