Sunday, May 25, 2014

A Bittersweet Tale from a Honey Book Author

Cinnamon bites and kisses simultaneously.
--Vanna Bonta 

I faced sweet and spicy experiences on my road travels, like a honey bee in flight; I was stricken by untimely challenges.  One afternoon in Las Vegas Tiger and I were in front of Lady Luck Casino. It was my idea to leave my long-haired partner in the shade with water at the doorstep of the entry way while I tried to hitch a safe ride back home to California. As I was walking inside an older man called out to me: “Nice dog.” I got an uneasy vibe but tuned it out.
      Fifteen minutes later, I left the casino. My best friend was MIA. Shocked and disoriented like a beekeeper with stolen bee colonies, I stood outside in the hot sun. I tried to fight back the tears.  After a long search there was no rescue. My canine buddy was gone. I cried all night long.
      At dawn, at a café I ordered a cinnamon roll, tea and honey. I was like a devoted beekeeper without his girls or beloved queen bee. I was alone.  It was one of the worst experiences I endured on the road. And flashbacks of our travels from coast to coast, haunted me then but now are cherished memories of a dog and a girl—an amazing human-canine bond. I left a photo of me, the hippie girl with her dog in Ontario, Canada on the bulletin board at the local animal shelter. Through all the pain and loss, I moved on.
     A few months later, fate paid me a visit. A black Labrador pup with soulful brown eyes came into my life on the road. We rescued each other at Ocean Beach, San Diego. We bonded instantly like a beekeeper with new queens and Stone Fox and I, California Butterfly continued on our journey together. A loyal dog and its dedicated human are similar to super powers of two superfoods--honey and cinnamon.

Formerly featured in
The Good Cook Book Club and
Wellbella Magazine
     The delicious taste of hot cinnamon buns with sticky honey and the warm memories they invoke in me from childhood when I smelled a homemade apple pie baking in the oven. The earthy, inviting flavor of cinnamon has been used worldwide by a multitude of cultures for its versatile seasoning powers as well as for its healing powers for thousands of years.
     Cinnamon comes from the bark of the cinnamon tree found mostly in Ceylon and China.  It can be found in several forms, including the stick, which can be grated or used to stir or season beverages—such as hot chocolate and apple cider. In ground form, it is the most common spice used for seasoning and baking.  There are countless dishes that call for both cinnamon and honey—two of nature’s finest foods that complement each other as well as provide medicinal properties.
      A new feature on the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid is the addition of spices, for reasons of both health and taste. Also, spices contribute to the natural identities of various Mediterranean cuisines.
      So, can a spice, like cinnamon paired with honey, which enhances the taste of many foods and warms the hearts of all who enjoy its aroma—hold healing powers to relieve pain and rev up your sex drive?  I took a look at the popular claims and this is what I discovered.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Memories of Coffee from a Tween's Eyes

By Cal Orey
A Historical Testimony
The coffee was boiling over a charcoal fire, and large slices of
bread and butter were piled one upon the other like deals in a lumber yard.
--Charles Dickens (1812-1870)(1)
Coffee in different forms treated my pre-teen, green taste buds. My budding imagination took me to foreign lands where coffee trees grow and flourish and people enjoy coffee sophisticated coffee drinks.  I observed adults sip coffee spiked with alcohol and non-alcohol. It was intriguing to discover a new spin on the beverage that was forbidden for kids like me to drink.
After one dinner party at our home, my mother (coffee must have been the gift that gave her boundless energy) served slices of cheesecake paired with a dark colored coffee in small white porcelain cups. I asked her, “What is this dark stuff?” She answered, “Espresso. I drank it in a bistro in Paris.” Since her trip to Europe, when I was in the third grade, she came back home with coffee attitude.
Served in a 3-ounce demitasse (espresso cups) the beverage presentation looked cute like something in an Alice in Wonderland scene. I wanted to taste the strange, dark brew, but was timid. It looked like the coffee cup picture on the cover of a French menu that my mom brought home from her trip abroad to France, Spain, and Italy. Actually, the Italian-sounding “espresso” word (which I incorrectly pronounced “expresso”) originated in France since the late 1800s and was appreciated in Italy later.
So, I shut my eyes (like diving off a block into a cold pool at swim club) and sipped the dark mud. “This tastes awful,” I exclaimed. I was still a kid (like a coffee plant that had not fully matured), what did I know? I swapped my coffee for a bowl of coffee ice cream with chocolate syrup.
At the same time, during the 20th century, coffee roasters and retailers were also discovering what titillated the palate of Americans. Coffee company pioneers understood the demand for the caffeinated brew, from coffee breaks in the workplace to coffeehouses. They knew that coffee had a place both at work and play. And these findings have been embraced and are now expanding to buzz-worthy health news effect of coffee to the mainstream audience...


Speaking of the French Mediterranean, the 20th century coffeehouses actually rooted from the popular espresso bars in Italian American communities, such as Greenwich Village and San Francisco’s North Beach. These coffee shops glorified coffee in the Bohemian Beatnik era of the 1950s—the decade I was born in and grew up to experience the coffeehouse phenomenon.
            In the 1960s it was a time when poets and folk singers, from Bob Dylan to Joan Baez, paved the way to a cool hang-out where anti-establishment young people sipped black coffee, smoked cigarettes, talked politics, and socialized.  In my teens, I recall hitchhiking in the sixties north to San Francisco where coffeehouses were a place to meet strangers and escape.
Once Starbucks made its mark in the coffee world in the early seventies, coffee shops became an American trend that swept through the nation on into the 21st century and offered an array of coffee specialty drinks to coffee lovers.
            In the late 20th century, coffeehouses became more sophisticated with its coffee selection, and today are a place where you can order coffee roasts from around the world, flavored coffees, organic coffee, hot and cold coffee drinks, and an espresso bar type of atmosphere. Bookstores, including Barnes and Noble, offer coffee and snacks, from bagels to cookies. It’s a place where people set up their laptops to work or play, as well as interact with others.
            Socializing contributed to the rise of coffeehouses. Like centuries ago, people sit and enjoy coffee, which not only provides health aspects in relaxing and communicating, but also a dose of healthful coffee was and still is part of the coffeehouse package that is here to stay. As time passed, in the 1980s and 1990s, coffee shops or family-style restaurants served regular coffee, meals, and pies. As a kid who lived through the coffeehouse period, I experienced the transformation—and I worked as a waitress serving coffee to people (all ages).
            These days, in the 21st century, during financial ups and downs, coffee is still a beverage that people enjoy at coffee shops that specialize in coffee, like giant coffee chains Starbucks and Peets. It’s the caffeine jolt to the flavor of specialty coffee drinks made by a barista that keeps the coffee shop in America alive. These places that offer java in all sizes, shapes, and flavors are a place where people go to relax and work.
       Even though I’ve never been to a European café, I have been to European-style bistros in San Francisco and on the Bay Area peninsula up to Lake Tahoe. Cafés with a European flair offer an outdoor terrace or sidewalk with seats, tables and parasols. Once a place for solely face-to-face socialization, in the nineties cafés in America were becoming a hot spot to use computers. Computers and Internet access in a café or bookstore with an espresso bar offer Wi-Fi—a place to work and relax. And coffee shops, like these, continue to be a mainstay in the U.S. as well as around the world.       
Excerpt from The Healing Powers of Coffee (Kensington)                               

Thursday, May 15, 2014

The Beauty of Coffee: Get Spa'd at Home!

 The Beauty of Coffee
Do you know how helpless you feel if you have a full cup of
coffee in your hand and you start to sneeze?
--Jean Kerr (Mary, Mary)(1)

As time passed, I can see myself back in time when I was becoming well-rounded like a seasoned coffee tree on a coffee estate. As a working writer amongst the masses of artists in the San Francisco Bay Area, I did take time-outs for beauty and play fixes, which included  socializing at no name coffee shops with an artistic flair. It wasn’t Café Nervosa or Central Perk (like in Friends and Frasier American sitcoms) but it was quality time with people that my mind and body craved. And that time-out can make you feel beautiful inside and outside.
Shopping with a caffeine fix at Hillsdale Mall on El Camino Real—The Gap, Macy’s, Bed & Bath—was heavenly. Those hot café mocha lattes in a tall 16-ounce glass with espresso, chocolate syrup, topped with whipped cream, chocolate shavings, and a straw are coffee to love. On a Friday night, my best friend and I would meet at a coffee shop. The mental energy perks followed.  Our complaints of the work week faded. Thanks to the caffeine buzz, we ended up getting a free make-up session. Then, it was time to shop. After splurging, we’d go across the street to Borders Bookstore.  We bought a pastry and got another cup of coffee. By 11:00 p.m., it was time to hit the different clubs, whether it was on the San Francisco Bay Peninsula or north to the City. Coffee chat for a night on the town was unforgettable and coffees gave us the nudge to do it all.


I’m hardly alone in discovering beauty benefits of coffee and its versatile healing powers from head to toe. Since coffee is antioxidant, it protects the body inside and outside. What’s more, its grounds are used to improve the skin, something I have experienced. 
Drinking coffee can help you get beautiful on the inside, but treating your body on the outside with its healing powers can make you look and feel great, too. And coffee—goes back to different uses by Hawaiians and the Japanese. Both cultures are known to use coffee beauty uses for reducing wrinkles and improving their skin. In fact, it has been said the Japanese have bathed in coffee grounds fermented with pineapple pulp.

It’s no beauty secret that coffee combined with other natural ingredients can enhance your blood circulation, zaps stress and anxiety, and help to make your skin feel silky and smoother. Coffee grounds teamed with other natural herbs and extracts can help exfoliate, soften, and even make your skin look firmer and glow. And this is why some spas around the nation and world include coffee in their spa treatments.  Here, take a look at some of the popular coffee-based treatments.

Coffee Therapeutic Anti-Cellulite Massage
 Coffee extract promotes circulation and tones cellulite-prone skin. Rosemary, mint and citrus calm the mind and revitalize the spirit while peppermint oil relaxes and refreshes tired muscles. This massage will leave you refreshed and rejuvenated.
Coffee Contouring and Cellulite Wrap
  Using the beneficial antioxidant and improved cell metabolism of coffee, the wrap begins with BodyCoffee Polish to exfoliate and refresh the skin to enhance the warm, rich detoxifying body wrap. A hot shower with BodyCoffee Blossom Body Wash is followed by the application of hydrating BodyCoffee Body Lotion.
Coffee Scrub
 An exfoliating Spa ritual that works wonders on the appearance of cellulite by improving micro-circulation with essential oils and ground coffee while detoxifying the skin with Dead Sea Salts. An intoxicating Body Wash blend will gently rinse away tension; the experience is finished with a soothing application of BodyCoffee Lotion.
(Courtesy: Cal-a-Vie Health Spa.) 

 Do it yourself products make it possible and easy to enjoy those pampering health spa benefits in the comfort of your home. And more people—both men and women—are discovering the beauty benefits of coffee, whether it’s from the grounds or brewed coffee. Here, take a look at some of the at-home treatments I tried from head to toe, and you’ll be thanking coffee trees.
Hair Conditioner for Shine:  If you’re a brunette, coffee can be your choice of conditioner. A simple to do coffee treatment works like this. First, use freshly brewed coffee (not instant), the stronger the better—even espresso. Shampoo and rinse your locks while the coffee cools. Apply the liquid to your wet hair; wait for about 10 minutes. Rinse.  Note: Do not try this DIY treatment if you have blonde hair or color treated hair. If you have any hesitation, consult your hair stylist before you do coffee.
Coffee Mask: Since I’m fair and blonde, the hair rinse wasn’t an option. But I did opt for a java home facial using coffee grounds and an egg white. In a small bowl, I mixed two tablespoons of fresh, used coffee grounds from my morning brew. Then, I added one whipped egg white. I applied this on my face and let it set for about three minutes. I rinsed with cold water. Coffee grounds are a super exfoliant, like sugar, and egg white (which I’ve used before) helps to soften skin.
Coffee Skin Anti-Cellulite Lotion:  Before I showered, I turned to an old favorite—olive oil.  I combine extra virgin olive oil with coffee grounds on my upper thighs and buttocks. Being lean, I don’t have a lot of cellulite, but most women as they age will get some dimpled fat—and, of course, smoother skin is something that is appealing. After several minutes, I showered. I admit my skin felt softer but since I don’t hunt for cellulite (like I did in my twenties); I cannot honestly say it made a difference.
Coffee Body Wash:  The next morning, I went to the shower and tried a coffee exfoliant for my entire body. I combined the morning’s coffee grounds with an all-natural body soap. My skin did feel softer than when I use Ivory Soap. But I confess the coffee grounds got me a bit wary considering they might clog the shower drain.
Coffee Foot Soak:  That night, I used coffee grounds with honey. I rubbed the rough and gooey concoction all over my feet. Twenty minutes later, I rinsed my feet in warm water. My heels felt smooth so I treated myself to a pedicure and painted my toenails with a coffee colored nail polish.
Both spa treatments and do-it-yourself action can do the job. But it doesn’t stop there, especially for bold and beautiful people.

More beautifying information in The Healing Powers of Coffee (Kensington)

My Senior Brittany, My Best Friend

By Cal Orey

This dog has been featured msnbc back in 
2006/2008 for sensing quakes
A Tribute to My Senior Dog--a Pre-Birthday Reflections of the Past

Yesterday it was my plan to take both boys, senior Brittany and Aussie pup to the vet for nail trim. Also, I wanted to see if Simon's should lump has grown since it's a benign wait-and-see...

As the day progressed, I began to feel uneasy. I home cleaned his teeth and noticed the back teeth needed more than I could do--much like us going to get our teeth professionally cleaned. So, after the water pik (he loves it), I sensed it was going to be a one dog appointment. 

I was right. No need to go under totally since I've been doing home upkeep but the good doctor gave Simon a strong sedative so he could clean under the gum line. When my boy came home I was surprised. Instead of groggy, he was out of it. He could not walk. It whooped my boy. (The bad part was it gave my sibling and I flashbacks of his counterpart, Brittany 2, Seth, whom developed a neuro disorder and lost all balance.)  Read: Last night was a challenge for all...
May 15, a new day...Simon? All is good. No worries.
Today, is a new day. Simon is back, but a tad subdued. The good news: The lump on his shoulder has not changed. No worries--for now. Overall, this dog has been blessed with good health. At four, he was bit by something in Reno. (Nose surgery to cure the invasion of tissue; a scar is barely visible, a sign of my canine warrior.) Last September, a small lump on his forehead (removed, benign).  One time he got into old sour cream; and there was the duo Brittany chocolate incident. He survived the bad food effects. And that's it. He is my strong boy.
Simon's fur grew back after the lump was removed
Pooch has gone to book signings with me, from
Chico, Carson City, San Jose, Sac, and SF

The thing is, as our canines age it is difficult. Like us, they develop odd lumps and bumps. Dental visits sometimes present gum problems. Health maintenance is a priority. Senior dogs deserve tender loving care and awareness of us, their caretakers. And Simon? He's been with me since 8 weeks old. We're talking more than a decade. On May 28, he will be 11...some number crunchers believe he's nearing octogenarianland in human years. But I've had three good friends in their eighties; their wisdom priceless. 

I am not an ageist when it comes to two-leggers or four-leggers. The cool thing about senior dogs is that if you've been together since puppyhood, you know them. They get you. Simon is my number one canine. He's accompanied me on Barnes and Noble book signings. He's helped me sense oncoming earthquakes and has made national news, even and Coast to Coast AM for his "hits". He was best friends with a sensitive Rat Terrier and lovable Seth, my beloved Britt whom I lost to the angels due to an unforgettable neuro disorder at the young age of six. Simon sensed his pal was "off" and he was my rock when his best friend left us to the other side. He grieved with me. He grieved alone...
My Brittany duo, from different lines, look the same

And then along came our Healing Pup, Skyler, the fun-loving Australian Shepherd. Life goes on. 
Young Aussies keeps Brittany younger

And today, Simon is my happy, healthy Britt whom I love. But he knows that. We are connected till death do us part.   I am happy and proud to be his best friend. A happy pre-birthday to my dear canine.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Coffee - Surprising Superfood: Our #1 Source of Antioxidants

By Cal Orey
Joe A. Vinson “Coffee is Our #1 Source of Antioxidants”
While coffee company players make the news, researchers, such as Joe A. Vinson, Ph.D., from the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania, made a big buzz, about the world’s favorite beverage, too. In 2005, he discovered that the average American consumes most of his antioxidants-healthy compounds from coffee. Vinson and his research team analyzed over 100 foods and beverages and then compared the intake of these foods to that of the diet in the United States. The results were surprising and the professor made his mark showing that coffee is a top ranking winner in the world of disease-fighting antioxidant foods and beverages. While his past research has gone down in history, he continues to study superfoods. Recently, I asked him some follow-up questions right before his new research that redo potatoes are rich in antioxidants, too. 
Q: Back in 2005, you said: “Most people drink it for the caffeine.” You added, “But it’s the number 1 source of antioxidants in the U.S. diet. Is this fact true?
A:  Yes.
Q: Does decaf have antioxidants?
A:  Decaf has 20 percent less polyphenols than caffeinated coffee but this is not significantly lower.
Q: Are there hundreds of antioxidant compounds found in coffee? Why is the mix important and not just chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid?
Excerpt from The Healing Powers of Coffee
A: There are hundreds of compounds and the effects of pure compounds are never as large as a combination of compounds.
Q: You found the average person gets 1,299 milligrams of antioxidants daily from coffee. The closest competition was teas at 294 milligrams.
A: Coffee contribution is revised to 691 milligrams/day and total from all foods and beverages is revised to 2056 mg/day of polyphenols.
Q: Does The French Paradox come into play with coffee?
A:  The French consume 30 percent more per capita than does the U.S.A. So coffee is an essential part of the French lifestyle, the Mediterranean Diet.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Here Comes the Updated and Revised OLIVE OIL Book

Coming to you January 2015... from the original popular book The Healing Powers of Olive Oil published by Kensington. NEW studies, home cures, stories, and cutting-edge, surprising information! The 2nd edition boasts original/tested down-to-earth heart-healthy comfort food recipes! 

But the popular 1st edition (still available) includes amazing recipes that'll be replaced.  It's offered in both tradeback and mass market formats--perfect to pair with The Healing Powers of Vinegar (27th printing) and The Healing Powers of Honey.

Not to forget the other two books in the reader-friendly Healing Powers series, The Healing Powers of Chocolate and The Healing Powers of Coffee--all superfoods (for your body, mind, spirit) that belong in the household!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

It's Honey and Tea Time


 For centuries, people all around the world have enjoyed the simple, soothing pleasures of a good cup of tea with a good teaspoon of honey, and nowadays there is more reason to so do. Black and green teas are not only good tasting, especially with honey, but together they pack a punch of nutritional and health benefits.
            Herbal teas come from a variety of plants other than the tea plant. They are made from leaves, berries, flowers, fruits and bark of herbs and spices. Although most herbal teas do not contain the antioxidant properties of “real” tea—black, green, oolong , white and red—paired with antioxidant-rich honey they do possess a wallop of good-for-your compounds that can enhance your health and well-being.
            Another new feature on the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid is the addition of herbs, like spices, for reasons of both health and taste. Also, herbs contribute to the Mediterranean dishes.
            Medical doctors, nutritionists, scientists and beekeepers are now confirming what healers have been saying for since biblical times—teas and honeys have a variety of healing powers.
            Here are my favorite tea and honey marriages—but there are infinite combinations for both you and me to try. There is no right or wrong combination and what’s sweet to you makes honey-tea beverages a sweet sip.

1. Black Tea:  The first tea I was introduced to was basic black tea—which does contain caffeine—and I have enjoyed it plain but realized it did need a sweet flavor boost to it.  Also, Earl Grey and English breakfast teas (perfect for an Irish breakfast, complete with fried potatoes, scrambled eggs, and scones) are part of the Black Tea group.
Best Honey Matches:  Basswood has a distinct flavor that I’ve used in plain yogurt for a rich flavor and it can give black tea a kick, too. Sourwood boasts a caramel taste that can make a common black tea come to life with taste. Earl Grey teams well with avocado, blueberry, and eucalyptus honeys, too. It’s more exotic and exciting than just a simple all-purpose clover honey that comes without pleasant surprises.
2. Green Tea:  Touted for its wide array of health virtues, this Asian tea does contain caffeine, like black tea, but not as much. It’s an acquired taste and that’s where honey comes into play so you can get the best of taste and nutritional benefits. 
Best Honey Matches:  Blueberry honey has a fruity taste which can give a nice kick to green tea, not the most flavorful tea.  Sage honey is mild, a California favorite of mine that brings out the best of green tea. 
Excerpt from The Healing Powers of Honey (Kensington)
The Healing Powers of Tea was featured by Good Cook and One Spirit book clubs, in Wellbella magazine, and is offered at Walmart.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Why I Wrote a Book on Joe...Confession of a Coffee Lover

One snowy winter morning, I followed my everyday ritual. 

I entered the kitchen and brewed a cup of steaming hot coffee. While Mr. Coffee did its job, I fed my Brittany duo and let them outdoors. Then, I poured French Vanilla Roast into a 12-ounce white mug and embraced it, bringing the java back to bed with me. My daily coffee fix is like connecting with a forever friend: reliable, exciting, comforting— always there for me.
After a sip or two of java juice, I tuned in to CNN and retrieved my e-mail. On this particular day, I got an idea. (It’s true. Coffee boosts brainpower and the creative process.) I e-mailed my book editor. My words were short and sweet: “Just thinking a tea book to go with the honey book seems like it would work well. What do you think?” His quick response: “Actually, I was thinking of a coffee book since coffee gets a bad rap. Is that a crazy idea?” I typed a one-line answer and clicked send. “Not at all. It was my second choice.” Like one coffee tree seed, this was the beginning of creating a book on coffee.

During the creation of The Healing Powers of Chocolate, I included a chapter titled “A Cuppa Coffee and Chocolat.” So, I wasn’t a stranger to coffee and its virtues, past and present-day. A while later I sent a follow-up e-mail to my editor. Blame it on the coffee and its caffeine, proven to increase alertness.
“Coffee may be hotter than tea and deserves attention,” I noted, and continued on as if I were creating the back cover of a book in progress. “Studies show it can help lower the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes; help reduce body fat and unwanted body weight—and increase longevity. Plus, coffee is used in health spa treatments and dozens of home cures and recipes. In moderation, coffee is another superfood and is teamed in cooking/baking with vinegar, olive oil, chocolate, and honey.”
As a West Coast native I felt a connection to the potential book topic. After all, I grew up during the Bohemian Beatnik era, which hit the San Francisco Bay Area, where I lived; and in Seattle, Washington, a place where the coffee giant Starbucks originated, growing into a trend that swept the nation and world. These days, coffee, a new health food, is popular for its multitude of coffee roasts, flavored coffees, organic coffee, specialty coffee drinks—hot and cold—and so much more.
It was no surprise that by mid-March the news arrived. The idea of writing a book about coffee and health had come full circle. While I was enjoying my morning cup of Starbucks’ Sumatra coffee I was notified by my editor, Richard Ember, that The Healing Powers of Coffee was to be my fifth Healing Powers book. I celebrated with a second cup of java juice.
Like vinegar, olive oil, chocolate, and honey, coffee is derived from nature. All five superfoods contain powerful antioxidants and boast versatile uses. The fascinating thing about my journey into the wide world of coffee is that I discovered that coffee is the second most popular commodity in the world.
So like a coffee tree, I began to flourish. The exciting part of my journey is that I discovered that coffee is more than just a beverage to wake up to in the morning. This time around, I’m enjoying a Kona coffee, a slice of gourmet coffee cake, and I just finished a coffee facial.
In The Healing Powers of Coffee I’ll show you how and why this natural beverage from tree to cup will open your eyes to the amazing powers of the coffee tree and its treasures to make your life more complete.

Spring Feng Shui for the Kitchen

Find your balance with coffee & feng shui
Welcome your home sweet home to the art of feng shui—the ancient Chinese art of placement—with a twist of coffee. By putting stuff in the right spots in your kitchen and other rooms it can enhance the flow of positive energy and zap negative vibrations, bringing you good health, happiness—and even fortune.

Declutter Your Coffees. If you’re a coffee lover, chances are you’re going to have more than less java beans and gadgets in your home. Rather than stuffing it all in one place, such as your pantry, I suggest storing it in a variety of places just in case of a blackout. You’ll find cans of coffee (these have expiration dates) in my pantry. Plus, they are sealed so I feel safe and secure that my fur kids won’t get into the java. Also, when I open my freezer, there is an array of well packaged coffees lined up in rows. It makes me feel safe in case there is a shortage on coffee. And, in my fridge, I also have concealed containers filled with coffee in use, from day to day. It’s clutter free but coffee definitely has its place(s) in my kitchen.
Clean the Coffee Pot(s) to Coffee Grinder. This is a chore but it’s good chi to have a squeaky clean pot (or two) and grinder. For the pot, use vinegar, water, and lemon (use hot water, let soak). As far as the grinder goes, day by day cleaning will keep you and yours healthy coffee drinkers.
Brighten Up with Lighting.  In your kitchen, you’ll want to have neutral of earthy coffee colors, from a tan, light coffee or wood paneling.  Fresh, white curtains will lighten up the room and your energy.
Scent It Up. And, of course, the constant aroma of fresh brewed coffee will linger from room to room.
Boost Your Mood with Coffee Mugs. Select your favorite coffee mugs and place them together or in a mug holder on the counter. This is inviting for you or coffee.
Use Coffee Art. Framed coffee prints can give your kitchen a nice visual effect, especially if they boast Mediterranean colors: red, brown, gold, and blue.
Flaunt Coffee Companions. Glass canisters filled with biscotti to coffee candy, look inviting and are your friends whenever you decide to brew a cup of java.
Bring Out the Fresh Fruit. Seasonal fruit in lucky numbers, such as eight, is good for you both physically and mentally. Citrus fruit, such as oranges goes well with coffees—and the shelf life is good.
Conceal Knives and Scissors. These are a must-have item so when you open a new bag of coffee you can do it the right way and without going on a hunt through the house or using your nails or teeth.
Hide the Gadgets. Too many coffee makers will give you clutter. So, choose your coffee toys and store the others in cupboards. Recycle these to fit the season and your mood. 
Place Coffee Books in Piles. Cookbooks are attractive and show that you like being in the kitchen. Line these up in an appealing way or pile books in stacks. Either way it will give a nice coffee literary feel and will be on hand to inspire you.
A bonus tip: Purchase a coffee calendar. It will keep you up-to-date on seasons and holidays—a great coffee lover’s tool so you can plan meals and coffee accordingly. And, of course, with your coffee-ized kitchen, what better way to celebrate than to have a cake, like this heavenly recipe, baking in the oven?

Heavenly Coffee Angel Food Cake
* * *
1 cup sifted cake flour                              2 tablespoons instant coffee, ground
1 teaspoon cream of tartar                              fine powder in a coffee grinder       
1 teaspoon vanilla extract                              1 ¼ cups sugar
1 teaspoon coffee extract (or                         1 ½ cups egg whites (10-12 large eggs)
½ teaspoon salt substitute almond                at room temperature

     Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat it to 325 degrees. Sift the flour and ground instant coffee together onto a sheet of wax paper, then resift it with the sugar and salt onto a second sheet of wax paper. In a large grease-free bowl of an electric mixture, add the egg whites and cream of tartar and mix on low speed till foamy. Increase speed gradually to medium and beat until whites are stiff and shiny, but not dry. Stop the mixer and add the vanilla and coffee extracts, whisking in once or twice by hand.
     Carefully lift the wax paper holding the dry ingredients and sprinkle the flour mixture gently into the egg whites. Using a spatula, carefully fold the dry ingredients into the whites till just incorporated. Do not stir hard or the batter will deflate. Very gently turn the batter into an ungreased tube pan and smooth the top lightly. Place immediately in the oven and bake for 45 minutes or till well risen and golden on top.
     As soon as the cake is done baking, invert (if your tube pan doesn’t have “feet”, hang the pan upside down over the neck of a bottle). Allow the pan to hang upside down for several hours until completely cool. (If it cools right side up, gravity will make it sink and become dense.) To remove pan, slide a long thin knife around the edge of the pan and the center tube to loosen it. Top the cake with plate, invert and lift off the pan.
(Source: Courtesy Coffee Science Source.) 
Excerpt from The Healing Powers of Coffee (Kensington)

— Cal Orey, M.A.  is an author and journalist. Her books include "The Healing Powers" series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, and Coffee) published by Kensington. (The Healing Powers of Honey and Coffee were featured by the Good Cook Book Club.) 

Monday, May 5, 2014

COFFEE: Surprising Superfood for Spring Fever!

By Cal Orey


It’s the ever-popular beverage we can’t live without—yet few consume it without some guilt. But the wonderful truth is that coffee has abundant health benefits. Coffee boasts more antioxidants than cocoa and tea, and even more than renowned antioxidantrich fruits like oranges and blueberries. In fact, there are hundreds of healing compounds in coffee.
Recent studies have shown that coffee consumption can significantly decrease or reduce the risk of many conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, asthma, cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, gallstone disease, and liver disease. Here are eight common health ailments and DIY at-home coffee cures. Savor the different roasts, blends, flavored coffees and drinks that can be your best friend. But caution, consult your health care practitioner before putting to work any coffee cure.

1. Depression (Lose the gloom and doom):

You may be one of the ten percent of Americans experiencing a melancholy misery. No one is immune. The 21st century comes with a mixed bag of stressors, including love problems or lack of love to money matters or no job.
What Coffee Rx to Use: Try a 12-ounce cup of medium roast (City) and dark roast (Italian or French), two times each day. Better yet, make that organic java. Add milk and dark chocolate.
Why You’ll Be Perked Up: There is light at the end of the dark tunnel for gloomy times. Drinking a couple of cups of coffee can boost mood. Also, adding milk, a mineral that can calm nerves and muscles, plus dark chocolate, which contains tryptophan, can help lessen anxiety and stress (which often are linked to depression).

Discover 50 Home Cures in 

The Healing Powers of Coffee (Kensington)

Like Coffee? You'll Love Biscotti and DIY Coffee Drinks

Italian Almond Biscotti
Dark Chocolate Icing
* * *
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
½ cup European style butter (you can use ¼ cup fruity olive oil)
1 cup white sugar, granulated
3 large organic eggs
1 teaspoon raw honey
1 teaspoon fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon anise
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups chopped almonds

In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients and set aside. Cream butter and sugar in an electric mixer bowl at high speed until mixed well, add eggs. Mix in dry ingredients, add extracts and almonds. Put flour on your hands, shape dough into two logs 8 to 12 inch long, 2 ½ inches wide and ½-1 ½ inches thick. On a parchment covered cookie sheet place rolls. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for about 10 minutes for a less crumbly cut. Slice rolls into ½ inch strips. Place cut sides up on fresh parchment papered cookie sheet. Put back into a 400 degree oven and bake till golden brown.  Cool. Makes approximately 30 cookies (the amount varies depending on how big or small you slice the logs).

Icing: Mix ½ cup dark chocolate chips with ¼ cup half-and-half. Melt in microwave. Add ½ to 1 cup confectioners’ sugar. Dip side of cookies into chocolate. Roll in almonds. Place in fridge till icing hardens. Store in container. Freezes well. Serve with DIY coffee drinks found in The Healing Powers of Coffee.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Honey, Here's How Teetotalers Stay Slim

So, exactly how do devout tea lovers stay slim, anyhow? 

Spa nutritionists will tell you that drinking a soothing hot beverage is similar to having a hot cup of soup before a meal. It satisfies your appetite and you'll eat less. A hot liquid can fill you up, not out.
Excerpt from Ch. 10 Tea(s) with Your Honey

Herbal teas with honey are caffeine free, unlike metabolism-booting black and green teas, coffee, and soda. If you max out on caffeinated beverages it can cause your blood sugar to spike and plummet like an amusement park ride, leaving you tired and cranky or likely to reach for more caffeine or junk food to get another pick-me-up. This does not happen with soothing teas.

Rosehip and Cranberry Tea
* * *
2 cup water
1 1/2 cups cranberry juice
1 clove
2 rose hip tea bags, or 
2 rose hip-blend tea bags
2 tablespoons clover
2 orange slices garnish

Combine the water, cranberry juice, and clove in a medium-size pot set over medium heat. Bring to simmer. Using a spoon, remove the clove from the cranberry juice. Place the rose hip tea bags into a warmed teapot, pour in the hot cranberry-water mixture, stir in the honey, and steep for 5-7 minutes. Pour into mugs, garnish with oranges and serve.

To order, click on link for available stores:  The Healing Powers of Honey: A Complete Guide to Nature's Remarkable Nectar! 

Coffee: The Skinny Beverage 2-Day 7 Lbs. Off Diet!

COFFEE: The Skinny Beverage 

Men and women can lose lbs/body fat with java

Did you know?  Spas around the globe include java to help boost your metabolism, energize and calm you—golden keys to getting and staying slim. Follow this jump-start fast semi-fasting diet plan and lose up to 7 pounds in 2 days (depending on your weight and metabolism).

Since biblical times, the health conscious and spa goers have turned to juice fasting for its body-cleansing and weight-loss benefits. Natural fruit and vegetables flush toxins from your body. And they flush away fat, too. What’s more, coffee can speed up the weight loss, too. Eating this way isn’t just about weight loss; it’s about cleaning out your digestive system. You’ll not only feel thinner, you’ll also feel positively thinner.

Enter The Coffee Diet.  Since the thirties on into the fifties, Hollywood dieters have turned to the slimming power of this wonder citrus—and coffee.
            The grapefruit’s status as the ideal diet food was born when researchers found evidence that it contains fat-dissolving compounds. Further elevating the fruit’s status in the world of weight loss: It’s low cal, fat-free, fiber-rich, vitamin-packed and satisfying.
  • Grapefruit:  One medium grapefruit has just 74 calories, less than 1 gram of fat, and it is a good source of fiber.
  • Eggs:  One medium-boiled egg has only 69 calories. Try eating just the hard-cooked egg white—it’s low in fat and calories and high in the amino acid cysteine, a skin supporting nutrient.
  • Coffee: Plus, the coffee—black—acts as an appetite suppressant, making this plan easier to stick with.
The Healing Powers of Coffee was
featured in WW ... author Cal Orey
quoted to say she knows women who
lost unwanted lbs. drinking java

Tips:  Consult your doctor before starting this 2 day semi-fast or any weight-loss regimen. Drink six to eight 8-ounce glasses of water and/or herbal tea daily (including coffee). Use spices such as cinnamon to enhance the flavor of grapefruit and vinegar for vegetables.  Excerpted and adapted from The Healing Powers of Coffee (Kensington).

To get the complete quickie diet that really works--for women and men--and why (plus how to smooth the appearance of cellulite and detox your body); grab a copy of The Healing Powers of Coffee! Penned by the former Woman's World diet and nutrition columnist, author of more than a dozen weight-loss mini mags, including "Cool Ways To Fight Fat" and "From Firm To Fat At Any Age"... As the coffee book author, I practice what I preach. I savor flavored coffee in the a.m., and then hit the swimming pool/walk the dog duo.

Q: What about the benefits of green coffee beans?

A: Green coffee refers to the new or unroasted [beans] of Coffea fruits. It has been praised for its weight-loss benefits on the popular "Dr. Oz Show." One study published in January 2012 in the Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity Journal shows 16 adults using green coffee bean extract lost an average of 17 lb in just 22 weeks. It's believed that chlorogenic acid slows absorption of fat from food intake and also boosts metabolism of extra fat. Evidently, it may be a better source of chlorogenic acid than traditional brewed coffee.