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Celebrity Chef Kunal Kapur Turns his Attention to Green Coffee

How did he get involved with this initiative and what has been his role so far in promoting green coffee?

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Celebrity, Chef, Kunal Kapur
Another way to use green coffee is by adding it in cupcakes, cold brews and even milk and cereals," Kapur told IANS in an interview ahead of the International Coffee Day on October 1. Pixabay

He’s curated a ‘satvik’ meal for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, hosted four seasons of MasterChef India and an 18-episode “Pickled Nation” TV series. Now, celebrity Chef Kunal Kapur has turned his attention to green coffee that he says “has a neutral flavour, giving it the added advantage of being versatile”.

“I have prepared cookies using green coffee powder and they are fantastic. Because the taste of green coffee is unlike roasted coffee, it can easily blend into different foods. Another way to use green coffee is by adding it in cupcakes, cold brews and even milk and cereals,” Kapur told IANS in an interview ahead of the International Coffee Day on October 1.

How did he get involved with this initiative and what has been his role so far in promoting green coffee?

Kapur first got introduced to green coffee when he was out of the country travelling, and his initial research was not encouraging — it was a beverage that was not highly spoken about.

Celebrity, Chef, Kunal Kapur
I have prepared cookies using green coffee powder and they are fantastic. Pixabay

“While there was a certain amount of education involved, not many focused on its flavour and taste. This is a unique beverage that is mild in taste (unlike your regular roasted coffee) with a distinctive aroma. While there is availability of the product, there is also a certain understanding that is needed in terms of its preparation, the experience of drinking it and most importantly, the health benefits it offers. Therefore I hope to encourage people in starting to include this in their daily routine by just making a healthier choice with a healthier coffee,” Kapur explained.

How does one extract green coffee?

Coffee beans are actually green seeds with a bright red berry inside. When it is roasted, it turns the seeds brown, giving it a certain aroma along with the flavour of coffee. For the green coffee bean extract, the seeds are left unroasted and when soaked, it creates a concentrated extract which is known as “green coffe”.

In other words, green coffee is coffee beans in their natural form. There are various forms to consume green coffee. One of the easiest ways to have it is through coffee powder which is soluble in water and easy to prepare, Kapur elaborated.

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What are the benefits of green coffee?

Green coffee is lower in caffeine and is not only packed with health benefits, but is also great to taste, Kapur said, adding that since it is made with only unroasted beans, it does’nt taste like traditional roasted coffee.

“It has a neutral flavour, giving it the added advantage of being versatile. Green coffee beans have up to 3X antioxidant power than regular coffee, making it a naturally healthy alternative. A natural antioxidant called Chlorogenic acid that is present in green coffee not only protects your health, but also keeps your skin healthy. Moreover, it aids in weight management and helps regulate metabolism, amongst various other benefits,” Kapur said.

Celebrity, Chef, Kunal Kapur
Because the taste of green coffee is unlike roasted coffee, it can easily blend into different foods. Pixabay

What is its future?

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“I feel green coffee is just a start towards the growing demand in the health segment. There is a huge push needed to make people aware about the availability of healthy alternatives. There are innumerable choices present in categories ranging from breakfast to snacking as well as main meals. Green coffee, oats, coconut, vegetarian protein, moringa etc. are some very unique offerings now available,” Kapur concluded. (IANS)

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Indian Food Can Never Stand Parallel To Italian Cuisine: Chef Ritu Dalmia

Indian food may finally be getting its due global recognition, but it will never be able to stand parallel to Italian cuisine

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Italian, Indian, Cuisine, Food, Chef
Fileja and Nduja : italian pasta dish. Wikimedia Commons

Indian food may finally be getting its due global recognition, but it will never be able to stand parallel to Italian cuisine on international stage owing to its complexity, says celebrity chef Ritu Dalmia.

“The popular of Indian food is on the rise, but I do not think it will ever attain the position that Italian food holds, as Indian cuisine is very complex and has particular flavours, which does not appeal to everyone,” Dalmia, co-founder of Italian restaurant chain Diva, told IANS Life.

Dalmia, who has re-launched Diva Spiced, a blend of modern Asian dishes along with some regional Indian flavours, said her journey in the food industry was something she never thought of.

“I always loved cooking for pleasure, and after having a series of very bad meals I commented about it to some friends, who turned around and said if you think you can do better then why don’t you start a restaurant. Passionate and enterprising that I was, I took their words to heart and within three months opened my first restaurant.

Italian, Indian, Cuisine, Food, Chef
Indian food can’t be at par with Italian fare. Wikimedia Commons

“I was forced to do my first catering by a client, who insisted that he wanted Diva food for his 40th birthday. That was the day I just said to myself, ‘hey this was fun, and I think I could do this’,” she told IANS.

The chef says though her brand does many events, it is very “thoughtful and selective about the kind of events it wants to do”.

“Italy and I, have a connection from my past life. I had to do something to challenge myself. And next thing I knew was that Cittamani was in the pipeline. And here we are today, without my having the slightest idea how we got here,” she said.

But in the meanwhile, work by Dalmia and her ilk has helped change traditional perceptions about food and the people who prepare it. She recalled how she was offered the job of a “domestic cook” when she opened her first restaurant. “Back then, a chef, in people’s mind, was equal to a domestic help. But today they are treated like celebrities, respected and admired. So I guess we have come a long way.”

She said her Diva catering has always been very conscious about not wasting food, long before the Delhi government decided to draft a law to keep a check on food wastage at social functions in the national capital.

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“We work with NGOs like Feeding India, volunteers of which come at the end of every event to pick up all the leftovers. Then again we are not a regular catering company with hundreds dishes on our menu. Our motto has always been, “less is more,” she said.

Dalmia said cooking calms her down. “It is the only thing that soothes and relaxes me,” she said. The chef is now getting ready to launch her next venture in Noida. She also has plans to majorly expand in Italy. (IANS)