My Wonder Coffee (chicory blend)

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A cup of chicory and the flower whose roots are harvested and roasted to brew it.  Photo credit: Kamparin/iStock/Getty Images

I drink a blend of coffee and chicory in the morning.  I add organic unrefined cane sugar, and 1/2 tablespoon cold-pressed coconut oil and whatever milk I’m in the mood for. The chicory is actually good for you, so it helps combat the damages of the coffee, or at least cut it in half!

Here’s my morning “Wonder Coffee”

“Chicory coffee, a coffee substitute cultivated from the Cichorium intybus plant, has historically been used as a medicine for wounds and several health conditions, including diabetes. While not all of its purported benefits are substantiated with scientific evidence, chicory coffee does offer many short-term and long-term potential health benefits. It may protect the body from damage and lower the risk of certain chronic diseases.

Soluble Fiber

Sufficient intake of soluble dietary fiber, an essential nutrient, is associated with reduction of cholesterol and blood pressure, the improvement of healthy gastrointestinal function, and several other digestive and health benefits. According to a February 2010 review by “Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety,” chicory root contains a soluble fiber known as inulin. This fiber protects against the accumulation of free cholesterol and provides other metabolic benefits, such as the promotion of iron absorption. In addition to its use in coffee substitutes, inulin is extracted from chicory for use as a sugar substitute because of its low caloric value.

Antimicrobial Benefits

According to a 2013 review by “Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine,” the chicoric acid found in chicory coffee protects the body against bacteria found around the teeth, indicating antimicrobial properties. The same review found that extracts of chicory root have antifungal properties. Additionally, certain compounds extracted from chicory root have antimalarial properties, justifying the historical uses of chicory as a treatment for malarial fever.

Protects the Liver

Chicory consumption may offer protection for the liver, according to a September 2010 study published in “Food and Chemical Toxicology.” At the end of the study, male rats that were supplemented with daily chicory showed modulated levels of total lipids and total cholesterol in the liver. The liver-protective benefits of chicory are partially attributed to its inhibition of free radical damage, an effect of its antioxidant properties.

Antioxidant Properties

Chicory coffee’s antioxidant effects may prevent against thrombosis and inflammation, according to a May 2011 study from “Phytotherapy Research.” Participants who drank 300 milliliters of chicory coffee daily had reduced blood and plasma viscosity after only one week, which researchers attributed to the phenolic content of the beverage. These phenolic antioxidants also fight against free radical damage in the body, protecting major organs and systems from oxidative stress.”

 source: Livestrong.com
chicory-flower
source: Chicory Flower, Petalmist.com

 

Chicory flower is basically a blue flowered perennial. Chicory leaves and roots are used as a vegetable. Its roasted roots are ground and brewed. It possesses the quality of being sedative and has cardio active properties. Chicory’s oligosaccharides are pro biotic and they are very beneficial in maintaining healthy GI flora. Its roasted and ground roots are used as a flavouring agent or a substitute of coffee. This is native to Europe. It is cultivated extensively in Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France and in north America as well. Chicory has a long fleshy taproot, a rigid branching and hairy stem that grows to a height of about 3 to 5 feet.

source: Chicory Flower, www.Petalmist.com

When I looked up Coffee vs. Chicory on Google, I was extremely surprised to get this table:

 

Coffee

 

Chicory

Coffee

CoffeeCoffee, decaffeinatedCoffee, espressoCoffee, instantCoffee, instant, chicoryCoffee, instant, frenchCoffee, instant, mocha

Chicory greens

Chicory greensChicory roots

Amount per

100 grams

1 fl oz (30 g)100 grams6 fl oz (178 g)1 cup (8 fl oz) (237 g)

100 grams

1 cup, chopped (29 g)100 grams

Calories

0 23
% Daily Value % Daily Value

Vitamin A

0 IU

0%

5717 IU

114%

Monounsaturated fat

0 g 0 g

Calories

0 23
% Daily Value % Daily Value

Total Fat

0 g

0%

0.3 g

0%

Saturated fat

0 g

0%

0.1 g

0%

Polyunsaturated fat

0 g 0.1 g

Monounsaturated fat

0 g 0 g

Cholesterol

0 mg

0%

0 mg

0%

Sodium

2 mg

0%

45 mg

1%

Potassium

49 mg

1%

420 mg

12%

Total Carbohydrate

0 g

0%

4.7 g

1%

Dietary fiber

0 g

0%

4 g

16%

Sugar

0 g 0.7 g

Protein

0.1 g

0%

1.7 g

3%

Caffeine

40 mg 0 mg

Vitamin A

0 IU

0%

5717 IU

114%

Vitamin C

0 mg

0%

24 mg

40%

Calcium

2 mg

0%

100 mg

10%

Iron

0 mg

0%

0.9 mg

4%

Vitamin B-6

0 mg

0%

0.1 mg

5%

Vitamin B-12

0 µg

0%

0 µg

0%

Magnesium

3 mg

0%

30 mg

7%History

History

The chicory plant is one of the earliest cited in recorded literature. Horace mentions it in reference to his own diet, which he describes as very simple: “Me pascunt olivae, me cichorea, me malvae” (“As for me, olives, endives, and mallows provide sustenance”).[54] In 1766, Frederick the Great banned the importation of coffee into Prussia leading to the development of a coffee-substitute by Brunswick innkeeper Christian Gottlieb Förster (died 1801), who gained a concession in 1769/70 to manufacture it in Brunswick and Berlin. By 1795 there were 22 to 24 factories of this type in Brunswick.[55][56]Lord Monboddo describes the plant in 1779[57] as the “chicoree”, which the French cultivated as a pot herb. In Napoleonic Era France, chicory frequently appeared as either an adulterant in coffee, or as a coffee substitute.[58] Chicory was also adopted as a coffee substitute by Confederate soldiers during the American Civil War, and has become common in the United States. It was also used in the United Kingdom during theSecond World War, where Camp Coffee, a coffee and chicory essence, has been on sale since 1885.

The cultivated chicory plant has a history reaching back to ancient Egyptian time. Medieval monks raised the plants and when coffee was introduced to Europe, the Dutch thought that chicory made a lively addition to the bean drink.

In the United States chicory root has long been used as a substitute for coffee in prisons.[59] By the 1840s, the port of New Orleans was the second largest importer of coffee (after New York).[58] Louisianans began to add chicory root to their coffee when Union naval blockades during the American Civil War cut off the port of New Orleans, thereby creating a long-standing tradition.[58]

source: Chicory, Wikipedia.com

In the summer, I harvest chicory roots and process them myself.  Here’s how.

I hope you give chicory a shot and enjoy it as much as I do.  If you drink chicory, please let me know how you enjoy it.

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4 thoughts on “My Wonder Coffee (chicory blend)

  1. pobept March 5, 2016 / 3:15 pm

    Grin … been there, done that.
    Chicory is not ‘my’ cup of coffee
    Happy gardening

    Liked by 1 person

    • Noble Homestead March 5, 2016 / 3:20 pm

      Aww, it’s an acquired taste, so that’s why I blend it with coffee. A quick tip for bitterness… add in a nice pinch of salt. It works with coffee, too! Happy gardening to you, too!

      Like

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