by Christy Baroni
You read that correctly: flour made from coffee!!! I can hardly stand how cool that seems. I started hearing about this magical dream food early this year so I dug in to find out if this is an urban foodie legend or something for real coming our way.
Let’s start at the beginning with flour in general. As you know, the way we process wheat in to flour here in the States is a very involved process that basically takes the B vitamins, most of the fiber, and some of the protein out leaving only the starchy part of the kernel (aka the gluten) left to be ground and then bleached with chemicals. You can read more about the whole process here if you are interested. Long story short, refined white flour is known as “the white devil” in nutrition circles for a good reason.
Could coffee flour be an answer to our search for a healthy alternative?
Other alternatives to white flour have been gaining popularity because of their nutrient density. Almond flour is clearly a leading gluten-free alternative given it’s nutritional superiority to other alternatives. It does add a sweetness to any recipe, and can be tricky if used in large quantities, but overall is easy to get, store, and use. The other leading alternatives are Oat flour, which has a natural antioxidant, and Quinoa which has the highest protein content. Both great choices depending on how you want to use the substitute.
So, what does coffee bring to the table?
Instead of just pulling the bean out to roast and brew, coffee flour is made by pulling the fruit from the coffee plant as well. Right now, this fruit is just discarded. However, it can be milled in to a gluten-free flour that has 50% more protein than whole wheat flour and five times the fiber! It doesn’t taste like coffee either but rather more like a cherry. How will that impact recipes? Only time will tell. This product is slated to be available in stores in 2015. Who wants to be the first to try it?
You can learn more about the product here, and I’ll be keeping an eye on the baking aisle to grab the first bag that is available!