Thursday, December 29, 2016

Adyar Food Walk - Filter Coffee

In large parts of south India, the best part of the day is the early morning cup of filter coffee :) 

It is drunk in a 'tumbler and davarah'. The tumbler is the glass, and the davarah the bottom container. An important part of the process is pouring the coffee back and forth, between the tumbler and davarah. This helps to mix the sugar, milk and coffee decoction; while also cooling it to the right temperature. More importantly, it aerates the coffee to produce froth, without introducing any additional water into it (Western-style espresso machines use a steam wand to produce froth). 

Coffee is not native to India. It came from Yemen, smuggled into south India by a Sufi mystic named Baba Budan. He planted them in the Chandragiri hills of Karnataka (in the Chikmaglur district). The hills have since then been renamed in his honour.

The southern Indian states of Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamilnadu account for most of the coffee grown. Coffee is usually inter-cropped with pepper, cardamom, banana, arecanut, orange and vanilla. 

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