Not That Kind of Green Coffee

Not That Kind of Green Coffee

green broccoli

I’m no Brassica-phobe: I love broccoli. Steamed, roasted, in a crunchy salad or creamy soup: its flexibility and high vitamin C content make it one of my favourite green veggies.

But I draw the line at a new way of consuming broccoli developed in Australia, land of the weird  — where it is dehydrated, pulverized, and sprinkled in espresso-based drinks.

Hort Innovation developed the powder to combat two unfortunate vegetable trends: the fact that the average Australian is not consuming their recommended 5 – 7 daily servings of vegetables, and that a staggering amount of produce is turfed before reaching stores because it is too “ugly” to sell. But Australians love their coffee — which has led to this unholy piggybacking of veggie upon java.

“The production process involves pre-treatment before drying and powdering the vegetable, to retain as much of the original colour, flavour and nutrients as possible.

The result may even be healthier than stir-fried florets — according to recent research, the best way to maximize the health benefits of broccoli is to chop it up as finely as possible to produce myrosinase activity (although the CSIRO hasn’t mentioned if myrosinase survives the drying process, so the jury is still out).

To make broccoli coffee, the powder is added to the cup after the espresso shot has been pulled. Steamed milk is added, and more broccoli powder is sprinkled on top.”

Apparently the broccoli powder does not seamlessly incorporate into the beverage: the taste is still a bit… cruciferous. But the creators are now investigating ways of bringing the powder to the home market — I imagine you’d have an easier time getting it down in a green smoothie or on top of a salad. (Though, if you’re already consuming smoothies and salads, Australia is probably not worried about you getting your seven daily servings…) I think we can agree that the concept — increasing veggie consumption while reducing food waste — is great. It’s just a matter of finding a more palatable execution!