Something green is cooking at A&E
Coffee beans? Well, yes. Always. Right now I’m referring to coffee beans that are left a little more green and then used in baking. Dan Perlman, a Brandeis professor, recently discovered a way to use lightly roasted coffee beans to make coffee bean flour. By “lightly roasted,” I mean much more lightly than we would ever brew as coffee. Beans roasted at this level have a very mild, nutty flavor, nothing like what we would recognize as a morning brew. Perlman has figured out how to roast, mill and blend his flour additive so that it can be used in cooking pastries. Sounds fantastic!
Here at A&E, we have an inquisitive chef named Kaylee Sanders, who is interested in experimenting with a coffee flour of her own. We are in the early stages of developing our own method for roasting, milling, and baking with a coffee flour. Stay tuned this Spring for some caffeine-filled and antioxidant-rich baked delights!
What are the benefits of coffee bean flour?
Green coffee extract is sought after for its antioxidant properties. Coffee researchers have decided that we can thank chlorogenic acid for most of coffee’s antioxidants. Unfortunately, as coffee is roasted, a lot of the chlorogenic acid is broken down and loses its effect. That is one reason why it is beneficial to roast beans lightly when using them for four. At a low temp, we can preserve some of the inherent health benefits of the coffee bean.
I found it very interesting, when researching coffee bean flour, that chlorogenic acid may also help reduce sugar spikes. Joe Vinson, of the University of Scranton recently presented on the topic at an American Chemical Society meeting. He and his researchers have found that chlorogenic acids might help regulate glucose when it hits the bloodstream. he is investigating ways in which green coffee extract could be used to treat people with Type 2 Diabetes. It sounds like the general public could also benefit from consuming more chlorogenic acid with sugar…like baked into a pastry:-)
Time will tell…
Does baking with coffee bean flour expose coffee beans to high enough temperature to break down their chlorogenic acid, leaving them reduced in their antioxidant content? Since we are consuming the whole coffee bean when we eat it as flour, will be absorbing more caffeine from a small amount? I still have quite a few questions about how this flour will interact with out biochemistry. We will see what answers the future holds!