Tag Archives: espresso

Are We Really Creating Social Change?

During the LeWeb conference yesterday, Queen Rania of Jordan was one of the featured speakers. If you aren’t familiar with who she is, you are probably wondering why she was a speaker at a technology and social media conference. Before I explain what she talked about – I have to say that she was one of the best and most motivational speakers I’ve had the pleasure of watching in a very long time. She is definitely one amazing lady.

Her Highness spoke about social networking, and asking if we are truly using it for creating social change. She touched on the fact that while we jump on the bandwagon to tweet and blog about important political and cultural situations – we are just as fast to switch gears and discuss celebrities. With that being the case, how, then are we really working towards any type of change for the better?

When we drop something important that could truly make a difference in favor of the hottest new gossip, we are dropping the ball on humanity. Queen Rania asked us to join her on One Day, One Goal. The concept is simple, but could have an amazing impact. Even if you have a cause you’d rather favor than education, you can still participate. Set aside one day to focus on one goal. Tweet and blog your heart out. Pour your passion into what it is you believe strongly in. Dedicate yourself to that goal for the day.

It’s time we stop sitting on our proverbial asses, talking about change. It’s time we actually get up and DO something about it.

Even though Queen Rania was very powerful in her presentation, we have community members right here at home who post amazing things every day. All of you discuss what is important to you, what you believe in, and what you feel is interesting to the rest of us. Keep up the great work!

I hope you took the time today to check out our downloads page. It’s like the box of chocolates that Forrest Gump loves so much – you never know what you get until…

How to Make Espresso at Home

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Just before I left for France the other day, I decided to make myself a cup of Espresso. One of the sponsors of the LeWeb conference I spoke at was Nespresso, and they sent a unit to all of us as a gift! So, I decided to try it out, and let all of you know what I think… since it really does make an excellent cup of espresso!

The genius thing about the Nespresso is that it’s easy to use, and there’s no mess involved. You fill up the container at the back, press a button, and out comes the espresso. I probably already drank more than I should, but who cares?! I like it!

I also have a container that allows me to server cold or warm milk, to allow me to change up how I want to serve the drinks. Once I finished making my espresso, it was a very simple matter to clean the Nespresso machine. Simply pull the container out, and clean it off. It pops right back into place very quickly.

You can buy different espresso flavors, of course. You can join a club and receive even more options than what the standard machine comes with.

I’m very happy with this machine. It’s easy to use and to clean… and it tastes great. The Nespresso is now my best friend. Thank you for the gift that is going to keep on giving in my house!

What’s your favorite coffee-type machine?

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Pixle101 made this list as a reply to my perfect coffee video. He has tried the French press, and while he agrees it is great for brew coffee, he loves latte and au lait. So here are his 5 Tips to Espresso.

  • Buy a quality espresso machine. I do not recommend buying the cheapest brewer. On that note, there is no need in buying a fancy machine that will have so many features you will not need. Find one that will take metal pods. Start between the $180-$300 price range and you should be good. Make sure it has a steam arm that is long enough for you to start frothing your milk from the bottom.
  • Buy espresso ground. Espresso ground is like powder. If you really want to use coffee, then get a quality grinder that will grind the beans evenly and as fine as possible. I have not had any luck finding a grinder that would make the coffee so fine that it looks like dust. If you do use regular coffee, then make sure you use the correct pod. The pod will usually have one drip hole when compared to the espresso ones. Pack the pod as tight as you can. Do not buy Starbucks coffee. It is way overpriced. I recommend Peet’s, Port City Java, or New Orleans blend Community Coffee. Do not – I repeat – DO NOT use pre-packaged paper pods. They restrict a lot of water flow through the coffee, and do not offer a full flavor like the metal pods do.
  • Learn how to froth the milk. This is the most important step for latte. Frothing is easy, but when you can start at the bottom and work your way up, it steams the milk more evenly. (Thus the first tip on the steam tip being long) Use a metal cup with a wide diameter about 2″. Start as far down as your steam nozzle will let you and work in circles like a spiral. It does not matter what direction you use. when the milk begins to expand towards the top, work the nozzle up slowly to get evenly steam the milk.
  • Learn all the different types of coffees you can make with an espresso machine. There are many types of coffee to include the latte, cafe au lait, macchiato, or just about any coffee you see at your favorite coffee house.
  • Experiment with the amount of espresso, foam, and steamed milk you use. Try steaming the espresso and milk together in the same cup. Spoon the milk out instead of pouring it. try taking just the foam first then pouring the milk in. Its your cup of joe, go crazy and make your own recipe. Almost all coffee flavors in the coffee house are made by putting a shot of coffee flavor in the cup. Mocha is the only one I’ve heard of that you can do without flavor. Maybe someone can make a top 5 on a mocha cappuccino.


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