My new favourite things – March 2016

AeroPress
I fucking love coffee. Good coffee. Proper coffee. It’s my treat and my morning ritual. I started getting fresh coffee delivered which I’d grind every morning and brew using a V60 filter kit, which was amazing. However, it requires a bit of setting up and isn’t particularly portable when I’m darting around London from place to place and office to office.

I’d been hearing about the AeroPress for a while, but began seeing it everywhere whilst I was working in West London. Not one to deny a sign from the universe, I decided to buy one so that I could bring my coffee to work and make it without dragging my V60 through London.

It was love at first pump.

Even using the default brew method it makes an awesome cup o’ Joe, but I’ve since been experimenting and figured out my favourite, which is the upside down, long plunge method. Beautiful coffee in under two minutes? Absolute bliss.

White, Green and Pu-erh teas
I’ve recently discovered the joys of brewing loose leaf tea. This came about after I realised I was probably brewing one too many coffees (a bag that was supposed to last a fortnight ended up lasting a week) and the ache in my gut every morning told me that I should probably switch to something lighter. I also read an article stating you shouldn’t actually consume caffeine within the first couple of hours after waking, because it messes with your body’s natural cortisol response (which is how it wakes you up naturally) and so you end up becoming dependant on it but don’t actually feel the effects.

At this time I happened to be listening to Tim Ferris on his podcast series and reading his articles. He mentioned that he’d switched to a combination of green tea, pu-erh tea, grass-fed butter and coconut oil in the morning, a concoction he calls “Titanium tea” (a play on the bulletproof coffee that has become so famous these days). Apparently it’s what helps give him a nice steady energy and focus for a good few hours instead of the instant hit and then crash that caffeine can give most people.

I still drink my morning (and sometimes lunchtime) coffee, but I now like brewing a big pot of tea that I’ll sip at throughout the day, less for energy and more for the health benefits (although I do feel it helps if I’ve got a large stretch of work to do). Green and white teas contain a phytochemical called EGCG, which has been shown to promote the death of cancer cells, help with neurogenesis (neuron creation, which helps with cognitive function) and the possible benefit of increased fat oxidisation.

Vegetables
Yes. Groundbreaking I know. But after spending most of my life avoiding the little buggers or only shovelling them down my throat when I felt guilty for over-indulging, I have recently achieved the mind shift to make them a priority in my diet.

This was in large part due to a nutritional course I recently started, which goes into great detail explaining how the food you eat actually changes the way your DNA is expressed, as well as informing about antioxidants, polyphenols and fibre. This has helped to create a strong investment in the fact that what you eat DOES change the way you feel and how your body works, which I feel is a key link that is missing from most people (the whole “I know I should, but I don’t believe they actually do anything” mentality).

This coupled with the fact that my mood has SKYROCKETED since keeping my body dosed with nutrients means that I don’t foresee a veg-less future for myself.

Egg cooker
As someone who currently eats six eggs a day, this has been one of the best investments I’ve made recently. Quite simply it works by steaming up to seven eggs if you want them boiled, or four eggs if you want them poached and all that’s required is some water and the flick of a switch. If you’re boiling the eggs, the buzzer sounds when they’re done to your liking, and if you want them poached just set an alarm for around 7 minutes. Walk away, make a coffee, make a tea, have a shower, feed the pet, come back and bingo… eggs.

It’s one of those gadgets that seems pretty pointless at first, but for busy people or people who like to prep their meals in advance the small investment really pays off by making life that little bit easier.

Links:
Aeropress
Egg cooker

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