June specialist is Francis Bradshaw, Managing Director of Moonroast Coffee, an artisan roastery based in Hampshire. Moonroast has just won FOUR Great Taste awards including a three star award for the Ethiopian which was the one selected by popular demand at my workplace. One of the judges commented, “one of the most complex flavours we’ve had in the last two days “.
Coffee is already the world’s largest trade after oil, and amazingly, world production and consumption doubles every 20 years. The astonishing demand is due to the wonderful aromatic aromas and flavours the coffee tree is capable of producing.
The Bradshaw family have been in the coffee and tea world for three generations and now supply freshly roasted coffee to homes and businesses through Moonroast.
We carefully sample roast and cup coffees from around the world to select the finest beans. Flavour will be influenced by variety, soil type, climate and altitude. Furthermore, how the outer cherry is removed will have an influence. A ‘natural’ coffee – dried in the sun will have different attributes to a cleaner tasting ‘washed’ coffee.
Slowly roasting the green beans unlocks and develops these flavours. The roast profile determines the attributes of the coffee in the cup. We then go on to blend different beans, aiming to give a balanced flavour in the cup. We offer a select range of blends freshly roasted in small batches to order.
My tip for coffee aficionados
Exposure to air degenerates the volatile top notes – the most valuable aspect of the coffee. Of all the tips that may be given to those wanting better coffee at home, buying a burr grinder will advance things further and faster than anything.
Grinders, such as Krups GVX2 Burr grinder, (available from John Lewis £36) have adjustable grind size and dose, important to extract the optimum flavour from the coffee. This will heighten flavour differences, and help identify what you like. Start from the widely appreciated Colombian and go on to compare with other single origins and blends. As a guide light roasts offer more fruit and acidity, darker roasts may be sweeter and slightly more bitter to taste.
If you have not got an Espresso machine a good option is an Aeropress available from Moonroast.
Below, Fran gives three of his favourite coffee recipes.
Torta Barozzi – a cake from North Italy
- 250gms dark chocolate
- 150gms sugar
- 4 eggs
- 100gms peeled roasted almonds
- 80gms butter
- Small glass rum
- 1 heaped tablespoon ground coffee
- Melt chocolate with butter
- Beat egg yolks, sugar and almonds finely chopped or ground
- Add rum and coffee
- Add chocolate and butter mixture
- Whisk egg whites to soft peaks and add, stirring gently
- Pour into greased or lined tin and cook at 180c for approx. 35 mins
- The cake should remain moist
Chocolate and Coffee Cake
- 5 eggs separated
- 200 gms dark chocolate
- 175ml olive oil
- 75gm caster sugar
- 3 shots espresso or 75ml strong coffee
- Preheat oven to 180C
- Line 24cm baking tin
- Melt chocolate over hot water
- Stir in espresso and olive oil, allow to cool
- Whisk egg yolks and sugar
- Stir all together
- Whisk egg whites stiff and fold in
- Bake approx 25 mins
For this Italian dessert take a scoop of vanilla ice cream and top with a shot of hot espresso.