I remember when I was a child my Grandfather taking me with him to run a few errands from time to time. Although it was always a fun opportunity for me, my favorite errand was buying spiced coffee from a shop in the streets of old Casablanca.

I still remember the fragrance we’d smell even before entering the shop. Among the many varieties of coffee beans that were offered, my grandfather would scrutinize them and choose the ones he prefers like a real connoisseur, before asking the shop keeper to grind them mixed with a number of spices. I never knew what spices those were exactly; but I remember catching the smell of cinnamon, and remember my astonishment when I learnt that black pepper was also one of the ingredients.

I’d wait impatiently until we return home where my Grandmother would prepare the coffee in an Italian stove-top coffee press and we’d drink it after sweetening it with honey, while Grandma would wait for the right moment to take the honey away from her diabetic husband.

Many years later, now that I am thousands of miles away from home, one of my favorite moments of the day is when I sit opposite my cup of spiced coffee which takes me back to many fond memories.

This specific type of coffee not being available everywhere, I’d always ask my mother to send it to me from home. But I also searched for the way to prepare it at home, and that is what I am here to share (despite the very long introduction). Another reason to share it may be the fact that it has many health benefits.

Regularly consuming herbs via our diet has been shown to increase immunity, reduce infection prevalence, optimise the digestion and absorption of nutrients, normalise bowel function and increase energy.

The ancient cultures of the world new this intuitively; if you look at the traditional cuisine of India, Africa or South America, it was loaded with an abundance of herbs and spices. Not only did this increase the taste and palatability of their food but it also ramped up their health and wellbeing.

 This coffee recipe is a great example of this. By taking something most of us drink everyday and blending it with a variety of healing herbs and spices, we not only get all of the antioxidants and health benefits of coffee but also a broad range of other benefits such as digestion optimisation, immune stimulation, infection prevention and blood sugar regulation.

 It probably isn’t always possible to prepare this treat, try to enjoy it slowly on a calm day in.

 For 4 cups you’ll need:

  • 6 tablespoons of ground coffee
  • ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground cardamom
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 4 cups of water

How to prepare it

  1. In a bowl, stir together the ground coffee and all of the spices
  2. Pour the mix into the bottom of a French coffee press
  3. Bring the water to boil and let it cool for a minute to ensure you don’t burn the coffee.
  4. Gently pour the hot water into the French press and stir it all together really well.
  5. Leave it to brew for 3-4 minutes, press the plunger and pour into 4 cups
  6. Enjoy it as is or add a bit of honey if you prefer.
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