[oclug] [OT] - Non violence stuff.

Chris Herrnberger chris123 at magma.ca
Sun Aug 20 14:55:49 EDT 2006

On Sunday 20 August 2006 10:10, miden wrote:
> Where can one get this 'German stuff' mentioned in the last paragraph?
> How is it prepared?

You can get it at several supper markets in the area, or the Sausage Kitchen 
in the Market. Just look at where its from. Generally it comes in a vacuum 
packed cube of anywhere between 350 to 750 grams. There are several 
varieties. Generally the more you pay the better quality coffee. Even Melita 
is not bad and you can get it in a large tin at Walmart for a reasonable 
cost. Always keep it in the freezer once opened. same for all ground coffee. 
Best is to buy beans and grind it as needed but that is harder to find in 
Ottawa. In Hamilton where I grew up and a larger concentration of ethnic 
Germans, its was rather easy to get the same packs as above however not 
ground. I guess its a demand thing, 

The trick to making German and most European styled coffee is to understand 
that a standard European cup or "tasse" in  German is approx 1/2 to 2/3 the 
size of an imperial cup. Mugs are an American invention that were introduced 
to Europe only during the second world war. Thicker walled they did not 
break. A good cup is usually made out of thin walled porcelain.  About the 
same size as you get in a higher quality resteraunts where coffee is served 
with a cup and saucer, not in mug, paper cup or Styrofoam container.

Secondly the measured increments in each coffee maker vary greatly. So measure 
water to be added based on the number of cups you want to make taking the 
above measures into consideration. Then add two heaping tea spoons per cup 
and a pinch of salt. Let the coffee maker do its thing (some are better then 
others so experiment and "always" use a conical filter) Now serve the coffee 
piping hot with cream and sugar to taste. 

Note; that's cream not milk and the higher the fat content in the better. 
Whipping cream, non whipped of course in a decent cup of piping hot coffee is 
a real treat as no sugar is needed as the fat level provides natural 

[Side bar comment: Do not let remaining coffee sit in the carafe on the hot 
plate rather transfer it to an insulated carafe or whatever you have 
immediately after it has been brewed.  As you know coffee tastes best at 
specific temperatures and can burn if the max temp is exceeded which is the 
case for most hotplates that come with standard home coffeemakers.] And yes 
don't ask as I don't remember all the various temperatures.

Now on last thing. You mentioned that you consumer at least five or more 
Turkish/Greek/Arabic coffee's a day. This is not healthy at all. Most peoples 
from these lands will drink no more then two sometimes spiked with Arak or 
whatever its called, basically a licorice based liqueur. More then this and 
its addictive and you will experience from moderate to severe caffeine 
withdrawal ranging from irritation to mild to sever headaches. Caught me off 
guard post university years and when on vacation and no coffee for three 
days, well the physical reaction and addictiveness really surprised me. Given 
that everyones physiology is different your experiences may vary, however its 
common folks wisdom, call it common sense, that coffee is a luxury item and 
to be treated and respected as such especially when brewed in the 
concentrations under discussion.

Most of all however. Simply enjoy it as a treat and not a staple. Then you may 
really come to enjoy and understand the various nuances that make up a good 
cup of coffee. If ever in Toronto and in the old Italian section, where you 
can still find coffee houses where only old men in black sit around little 
round tables and who never talk to us "mange cakes" out of respect, ask for 
"mothers' milk" Guaranteed to knock yours socks off. 50 percent thick 
expresso, 50 percent Grappa served in a demi tasse. One shot and your good to 
go for at least eight hrs. You must remember that many of these drinks were 
mixed in portions to enhance the narcotic effect both as a stimulant and 
anti-depressant given the harshness of life and absence of food. Three meals 
a day is a essentially a modern approach in time of prosperity. Hence folks 
still chew coca leaves for all the right medicinal reasons. Only in NA and in 
recent times has coffee become a commodity that competes with other forms of 
drink. Sadly this concept is now being exported. 

In our house growing up on Sunday around three was coffee time. Cakes were 
prepared or purchased and the family and guests would sit and discuss the 
events of the week while being served coffee and home made tortes. A luxury 
of days gone buy and still recoverable if time is prioritized in terms of 
what really is important. To each his own of course. 



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