Monday, 13 September 2010

Long time no post

After a 3mth hiatus I am poking my head out of the cave.

I have learnt alot during my time away from Blogland; about myself, my friends, about the world.  I have had some of my beliefs affirmed and some shaken.

I have been lucky enough to make some lovely new friends during these months.  Together we are working towards learning to live with the sadness that the immense loss of a baby brings, whose time amongst us was just beginning.

During this time the single most important belief that I hold was most certainly affirmed.  People are all that matter.  And particularly the people that you love. 

For those of you that read my blog you will know that this is what drives my love of preparing food.  It is ultimately the sharing of the food with people that I care about that is what I love.

Over the last few months I have had some of my old (& new friends) in my home sharing coffee, tears, sadness, laughter, food and love.

It has been the amounts of coffee that have been being consumed that drove me to investigate roasting my own beans. 

It should be obvious by my title header that I am passionate about coffee,  so I am not really sure why it has taken so long for me to think about home roasting the humble bean.

To be honest I didn't realise it was so simple and so much cheaper- I go through about a kilo of coffee beans a week to give you some idea of how much coffee is made at my place!

Once again thanks to the wonderful world of the 'interwebgooglenet' there is a stack of information on home roasting. 

So off I went on my new adventure.......I am HOOKED! And the result is soooooo much better.  I am happy to say I have not bought a pre roasted bean from the shop since I started and the end result is of infinitely better quality so I can't imagine myself settling for store bought beans again.....

My friends who have joined me in drinking a bowl of my home roasted beans assure me they also think it is pretty darn good.

It has been good for me to have a new project and I am especially happy with how delicious it is.

I felt kind of embarrassed at first that I had no idea what a green coffee bean looked like......I have been drinking good coffee all my life.  I was lucky enough to grow up in  a house that had coffee brewed in the iconic stovetop 'Atomic' coffee machine.  I have taken a pic of mine for those of you who are not familiar.  A magnificent example of beautiful design if nothing else- the simple elegance of form & function at it's best.

Have a look.......

During the 70's there would have been few homes that were lucky enough to be drinking good coffee.  We had gorgeous Italian neighbours across the road whose home had the wonderful smell of a mixture of stovetop coffee and tinned tuna cooking in homemade tomato passata. Alot of 'Aussies' would have found the smell repugnant- I found it comforting.

I guess our house also smelt of brewed coffee although I didn't realise at the time as I was just living in it.  It's funny isn't it how every family's home has a unique smell.

I was so scared of moving out of home and having to drink instant coffee that I picked up my own Atomic (the one in the pic above) at a trash'n'treasure for $2 when I was 14- a few years before I moved out of home- now that's forward thinking!   It is still going strong- although nowadays I just use it when we go camping as I have an electric benchtop machine like most Australian homes.  Did you know that Australia has the highest per capita domestic espresso machine ownership in the world? (stupid fact for the day!)

I have to say though that owning a good coffee machine is not all it takes to make a good coffee.  I have had many bad coffee's made in good machines.

Good beans are ESSENTIAL.

Here is what they look like when they are green.....who knew!

What I learnt is that the green beans really have a surprisingly unpleasant smell- kind of like raw wheat. Who could imagine that roasted they are soooo different!  Who was the genius that discovered that roasting these beans and making them into a drink could give so many so much joy! I will need to do some reading on who this genius was.......

Here is what they look like roasted:

Once roasted they take on that heavenly smell we coffee lovers crave and the sound as they fall around your hands all glossy and gorgeous!

And here is the brew........oh so delicious.  And I have to say fresh roasted beans that are ground just before the coffee is made is beyond compare.

I have found a new love of an old friend.........
I like to drink my coffee from a bowl. I find the way it warms my hands comforting.  I like to share my way of drinking it with my friends.

I am happy to say that after a few months of being in door is open again for friends to drop over and join me again. The coffee is on!

Here are some links if you want to investigate further....

Today I am listening to new music from Howe Gelb......another old favourite of mine.....really good to drink coffee to!!

Join me on my journey.


  1. You are a magnificent human being my darling. Welcome out of the cave. But I love the cave...but I love you out of the cave.... I think i need a coffee.

  2. @ GT - me and the coffee machine are waiting for you! xx

  3. On your comment "People are ALL that matter"
    Being on this journey with you, through everyones challenges, has affirmed my belief also, that you really only need the love of friends & family to survive! You don't need no fancy car, or fancy job. Just LOVE. All you need is LOVE baby. Goddamn spunk you are! I love your blog, your coffee, your children, and your pizza. Yum pizza.


  5. Amazing Ruth! Truly on top of your game

  6. YIPPEEEEEEE!!! She's BA-aaaack! and how right you are...PEOPLE ARE all that matter(s) X X X

  7. Howe Gelb, sexy subtle, like drinking good coffee inside an airy, tropical house when the first light rains knock - before the big storms arrive - thank you Ruth for your sharing.

  8. Hey GG, you gotta pass on the secret of how easy it is - just get out your kids popcorn popper and you're a coffee roaster in 5 minutes ... and then the roasting addiction has hit ya', and you'll never buy a brown bean again, as you have dicsovered. Lovely, aint it? and puls 10 on the most important things in life ... Greg

  9. Dear daughter - so wonderful to see you back at your creative inspiring blog. You are such a shining example of love, courage, generosity,lovely articulate expression and sheer strength of spirit. Go you good thing - and go the good old Atomic! So many memories of cuppas around many tables. The best thing about a good cup of coffee is sharing it with a good friend - especially you!


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