Coffee has always played a leading role in a variety of sweet recipes. But now, and more than ever over the last few years, it is increasingly common to find it in many savoury recipes too, as a very special ingredient. Of course, it is tricky to use, especially when it comes to pairing it with other flavours. And yet, with our tips, some of you have already managed to create some real delicacies using coffee and shared them on social media!
Today we’ll find out how to use ground coffee powder to make pasta and rice dishes, as well as main courses featuring meat and fish: so, ready, steady, let’s cook!
7 valuable tips for using ground coffee powder in savoury recipes
Before wading into the most suitable pairings, here are a few tips that will help you effectively add this ingredient to your culinary creations:
1) First, consider whether, for the recipe you want to make, it would be better to use a 100% Arabica blend, or one in which the Robusta variety is prevalent because, as is well-known, the two types are very different, starting from their taste and aroma.
And, if you are familiar with the characteristics of the particular blend you want to use, even better! This way you can pair it more effectively based on precise criteria. Just like we do when we suggest a specific blend of Caffè Aiello as an ingredient of the recipes containing coffee on our blog.
2) Ground coffee does not actually look and feel like a real powder. Instead, it can have a large or fine grain, which varies from blend to blend. For this reason, assess whether you might need to grind it again, depending on how you plan to use it.
3) If you intend to use the coffee powder at the end of the recipe, taste will prevail over aroma. Instead, if the coffee is to be cooked along with the other ingredients. it will lose its taste slightly but its aroma will be much stronger.
4) When using coffee as an ingredient in a savoury recipe, try to balance the flavour of the dish by adding a sweet ingredient to the dish.
5) Obviously, pay close attention to the quantities and proportions. Remember how intense the flavour of coffee is, and that a small quantity is usually enough in order to perceive its taste.
6) And it’s not all just about taste. Coffee powder also has a very pleasant decorative effect so, in some recipes, you can decorate the plate with the quantity recommended for using it an ingredient.
7) Always taste your creations! Even the top chefs with many years of experience taste their dishes while cooking., and when they are ready. So, even if you are familiar with the pairings that best suit ground coffee powder, we’d recommend you always try your dishes before serving them.
The perfect pairings with ground coffee powder
The best pairings are those created with tendentially sweet tastes. Coffee can also be paired with bitter ingredients, as long as the dish also contains another sweet ingredient to balance the flavours.
- An excellent first course is squash risotto with a veil of coffee powder sprinkled directly on top of the dish.
- Oven-baked courgettes au gratin are also perfect when paired with coffee: add a small quantity of coffee powder to the crust on the surface.
- When it comes to meat, the most suitable pairing are rabbit and suckling pig: prepare them according to your favourite recipe in the oven or in a pan, then sprinkle just enough coffee powder directly on to the plate to create the perfect dish.
- With fish, you can use coffee powder in the cooking phase, on fish to be baked in the oven, or sprinkle it directly on to the plate when serving filleted fish, topped with a drizzle of oil. The best fish to use? Sea bream, sea bass, trout, and salmon.
- For fans of crustaceans, crab is the one that will ensure the best balance of flavours due to its extreme sweetness. But prawns and shrimp are also noteworthy contenders in the coffee pairing stakes!
If you like the idea of using coffee as an ingredient in savoury recipes, keep following us on our blog and social media pages. We’ll keep offering you suggestions about the easiest, tastiest combinations that are sure to be a hit!