Old-timey drinks

Firekin4

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Joined
Oct 10, 2015
Lately my interests in history, anthropology, and the culinary arts have been given new life, and this extends to beverages. I love my morning coffee, but I like to switch it up every now and then with some tea or hot cocoa. Recently I've began making my own version of xocolatl, the original Mayan-style cocoa drink (though theirs was usually drank cold; understandable down in the tropics, but I don't live there), and I'm trying to find older traditional ways of drinking my favorite plant people. No luck. You'd think that in the regions such things as cinnamon or coffee are native to, they'd have traditional ways of drinking them with other native ingredients. Then again, I'm bad at the internet. I'm not looking for detailed recipes, just traditional ingredient combinations that I can go by; ie xocolatl had cacao, chilis, achiote, and/or vanilla. A traditional African coffee drink would be awesome, as well as anything the Egyptians were believed to drink.
 

Firekin4

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Oct 10, 2015
Original Poster
Cocoa, coffee, vanilla, pepper, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, nutmeg, maple, and chilis are all things I'd love some traditional beverages with. I might even try an ancient cumin tea, if I can get past seeing it as a taco spice. The older the better, but I know recipes only go back so far, even the ones as vague as xocolatl. Hell, any resources for ancient recipes in general would be greatly appreciated. I just love to eat or drink something and know my ancestors were consuming the same thing a thousand years ago.
 

u&iraok

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May 22, 2009
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I think it's cool what you're trying to do so I looked up coffee and found that it's thought to have originated in Ethiopia. Apparently they ate coffee in many different ways, one of which they would put ghee in their coffee. Sometimes the ghee was spiced. Here's a spiced Ethiopian ghee for sale: http://www.pureindianfoods.com/where-to-buy-Niter-Kebbeh-Ghee-butter-p/nk.htm

"Our grass fed Niter Kebbeh ghee contains: Organic Cardamom, Organic Cinnamon, Organic Coriander, Organic Cumin, Organic Turmeric & Organic Nutmeg"

On the other hand regarding who had coffee first: "Some Yemenis dispute Ethiopia being first, but we can say for certain that Yemen is one of the original two, and Yemenis do have the honor of being in the first blended coffee - Mokha-Java."

I couldn't find any Yemeni recipes, though, I think they just drank it with sugar. A lot of cultures drink it with sugar.

Here's a spiced Turkish coffee recipe with powdered coffee, cardamom, clove, cinnamon, vanilla and sugar:http://coffeetea.about.com/od/preparationandrecipes/r/SpicedTurkishCoffee.htm
 

u&iraok

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May 22, 2009
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In my head
As to cocoa, some cultures would ferment it and make wine out of it. The Egyptians fermented carob and made an alcoholic drink out of it or made a drink out of carob pods and sugar. They also have a lot of fruit drinks, flower, coconut water and cane juice drinks. The spices you mention are warm spices and I think their drinks are mostly cooling.

In Jamaica they made a tea out of cocoa and grate nutmeg in it. I thought it was delicious, if you don't mind a more watery drink than you usually have with cocoa. The cocoa seeds are laid out to dry, roasted, then ground and made into balls that you grate. You can buy similar ones here:http://www.amazon.com/Cocoa-Cacao-Product-Grenada-Caribbean/dp/B00RDJ8ZAS I don't know how old this drink is but Jamaicans have kept a lot of old traditions, many from Africa.

Chai is a very old tea from India, usually used with black tea but the Kashmiris use green tea. Milk, cinnamon, cardamom, star anise and sugar are usually used. You could add cocoa or coffee and leave out the sugar. Find a recipe you like. I love it--it's a very warming drink in the winter.

I kind of get the idea that coffee and chocolate were for the rich or special groups so that might be why you don't see a lot of traditional drinks once coffee and chocolate were discovered and taken around the world. Even in Jamaica today, most Jamaicans don't drink coffee. They have some of the best coffee in the world and while it's cheaper there than in the states it's still too expensive for the average Jamaican.
 

Firekin4

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Joined
Oct 10, 2015
Original Poster
Yeah chai is definitely a favorite of mine. In the morning, it's either chai with cane sugar, some form of hot cocoa, or coffee with cane sugar and cream. I'd like to switch it up though with more herbs, particularly ginger and turmeric. I usually find the oldest ways to be the most satisfying.
 

larryz

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Joined
Apr 23, 2014
Yerba mate has literally changed my life for the better in a million ways. The closest thing to the fountain of youth. Though I can only have no more than twice a week to maximize the benefits.
 


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