This weekend featured all things coffee. Nothing wrong with that I hear you say! Nothing wrong indeed. In fact, it was fantastic! So good, I want to tell you about three of my coffee related experiences – a great end to what was a dull and drawn out January!
Dedica Style by De’Longhi
1. My New Dedica Style Espresso Machine by De’Longhi
I have never drank tea. Coffee is my morning and afternoon go-to almost every day. Whether it be at work or at home, I spend a small fortune buying coffee. I have been using my keep cup over the last few months, so that helps keep the cost down slightly, but buying a coffee to me is the one treat I allow myself everyday. What is the point of working so hard if you can’t treat yourself, right?? At home I was using a machine that took coffee pods. The pods pile up until I eventually get around to recycling them. For a long time I have wanted to move to ground coffee to eliminate the use of plastic pods and be somewhat more sustainable. The lovely people De’Longhi got in touch and asked if I would like to try their Dedica Style Espresso Machine and I jumped at the opportunity to work with them again and test out their machine.
Testing out my barista skills at homeI popped into De’Longhi in Arnotts Department store in Dublin on Friday and collected my lovely new machine and got a fantastic demonstration by one of their staff members, Max, who was so knowledgable and enthusiastic about their products. I couldn’t wait to get home and try it out. The Dedica Style allows you create a professional coffee making experience from your own home. I’ve been making coffee since I got home on Friday and can attest that this is indeed true.
The machine is stylish too. It sits beautifully on my countertop and does not take up much space. A huge plus in our kitchen. The Dedica Style is simple to use too. Two buttons, one for single shot espresso and one for double shot espresso. There is a milk frother built into the machine which allows you to make cappuccinos or Cafe lattes to your hearts content. The machine is self cleaning too. The Dedica Style is currently on sale in Arnotts for €249.95 and wait for it – that deal includes a coffee grinder, stainless steel tamper, milk jug and knock box (for your used coffee granules). Amazing value!
Using only ground coffee, this machine is also helping me be a bit more sustainable. I have done some research on what to use my used coffee for and it can be put into a compost pile or spread around certain plants in your garden. Apparently coffee granules can change the colour of a hydrangea – something I only discovered this weekend doing my research.
2. Coffee from Bean Delivered
With the new De’Longhi machine safely home, I needed coffee to test it out. Sarah in De’Longhi connected me with James, who runs an Irish Business called Bean Delivered. Bean Delivered is a monthly Irish roasted coffee subscription service. Each month Bean Delivered sends coffee from a different Irish based coffee roaster to our subscribers. The coffee is all single origin specialty coffee.
Bean Delivered is run by, James Coffey (Coffey by name, coffee by nature!) and was set up in 2019 as a way to try and encourage coffee drinkers to try different, more specialty coffees roasted in Ireland. To sign up people can go to their website and click subscribe. For a monthly subscription it costs €20 per month, which includes free postage to anywhere in Ireland. Each month you will receive coffee from a different coffee roaster, plus some Bean Delivered gifts from time to time, or samples of different coffees. James has offered my followers a 10% monthly discount with the code: oldvictoriannew. I tested out Bean in Dingle over the weekend and the coffee was delicious.
3. Did somebody say Coffee Cake?
It is safe to say I immersed myself completely in a coffee experience this weekend. Using coffee from my new Dedica Style machine, I made a Coffee and Walnut Cake for a friend in work, who’s birthday I missed last week. She can’t eat gluten, so this cake recipe was perfect. I’ve outlined below how to make it. It is straight forward and doesn’t require too many ingredients, which is always a big plus in our house!
Gluten Free Coffee & Walnut Cake
175g Margarine (I used Stork)
175g castor sugar
3 eggs, medium, beaten
175g gluten free self-raising flour, sieved
1 level teaspoon gluten free baking powder
55g walnuts, chopped
2 tablespoons of espresso coffee
225g icing sugar, sieved
2 tablespoon of espresso coffee
Place all cake ingredients together in a mixing bowl and beat until smooth.Place in 2 x 18cm (7 inch) greased and bottom-lined sandwich tins.Bake in middle of preheated oven 180 ° C, 160 °C fan oven, Gas mark 4 for 25–30 minutes. Turn out and cool on wire tray.Icing: Cream Stork and icing sugar until light. Add coffee and beat until well blended.Sandwich the 2 cakes together with a little of the icing.Spread most of the remainder on top of the cake.Decorate with remaining walnuts and serve (with coffee!)
I hope you enjoyed reading about my coffee weekend as much as I enjoyed experiencing it.
If you get yourself a machine or try out the coffee or cake, be sure to let me know!
Thanks for reading.