This is the draft for a speech that I presented at my Toastmasters group last week. It was for project three of the Speaking to Inform manual, which is the demonstration speech. I did not actually make Greek coffee during my demonstration, but I pantomimed the process using a pot, spoon and coffee cup. I also brought the ground coffee beans in some snack bags to show to the audience; I wanted them to see just how finely ground the coffee beans really are. This speech was delivered without notes, so I'm sure that the talk that I gave differed from the draft below.
Today, David will be presenting a speech for Project 3 of the Speaking to Inform manual: The Demonstration Talk. Thanks to businesses such as Strarbucks, and products like Instant Coffee and K Cups, we live in a culture where we have quick and easy access to coffee. But how many people even consider that there may be alternatives? Today David is going to tell us about another method of preparing coffee.
Speech Title: Slow Down and Enjoy Your Coffee
Who here is a coffee drinker? Coffee is the second most consumed beverage in the world. If most coffee drinkers are like me they want to have their coffee prepared as quickly as possible. Maybe they drink instant coffee; maybe they have their coffee machine set up so that their coffee is ready right away in the morning; or maybe they use the drive through at a local coffee shop. I would guess that most of the time we are in too much of a hurry to even enjoy our coffee. Today I am going to talk about a method of preparing coffee that should not be rushed, but I think that it is worth the time put in.
Greek coffee (also know as Turkish coffee) is a method of preparing coffee that is found in a variety of locations such as the Middle East, North Africa, and Eastern Europe. Instead of filtering the coffee beans, the beans are boiled in a pot and served in a cup where they are allowed to settle on the bottom. Greek coffee is a strong brew, thicker and richer than filtered coffee. It almost has a chocolaty taste, and it will have a foam on the top when it is prepared properly.
When I prepare Greek coffee I make it one cup at a time. There are a few variations to preparing Greek coffee but I will discuss the one that I find to be the easiest. I start by pouring cold water into a coffee cup. I do this as an alternative to measuring out the water. I can just eyeball how much I will need. I fill the cup to about one-half of an inch from the top; this leaves room for the foam after the coffee is completed. I then transfer the water to a pot.
Greek coffee is traditionally prepared in a pot called a briki (bree kee). They come in a variety of sizes with 12 ounces being common. If you do not have (or do not want to buy) a briki, a small saucepan may be used instead. However, using a briki is preferred for getting the proper amount of foam.
After I put the water in the briki I add the coffee grounds to the water. Beans for Greek coffee are ground into a very fine powder. Most coffee mills do not grind the beans finely enough, so I buy a special coffee ground for preparing Greek coffee. I stir the coffee and the desired amount of sugar until all of the coffee sinks and the sugar is dissolved.
I then put the pot on the burner. Traditionally, a gas burner is preferred, but an electric range works as well. The burner is set to a moderate heat, if the heat is too high the coffee will come to a boil too quickly and there will not be enough time to extract the flavor from the coffee beans. I do not stir the coffee after it is put on the burner, doing so would dissolve the foam.
And now the hard part: waiting. When I am making filtered coffee I can just turn the machine on then go do something else while I wait for my coffee to finish. I don’t even have to wait for the full pot to brew before I pour the first cup because the machine stops the flow of coffee for a short time when the pot is removed. But when making Greek coffee I have to keep an eye on the pot. I remove the pot from the heat when the coffee starts to come to a boil. But I’m still not done; I keep the pot off for a short time then bring it to a boil a second time, and then again a third time. Then I pour the coffee back into my cup. One goal when preparing Greek coffee is getting the thickest foam possible. I am still working on this, but I hear that a trick is to pour the coffee slowly and to raise the pot higher as your pour.
Greek coffee should be consumed slowly because it is served at a high temperature. It is also important to remember to not drink the whole cup, be sure to leave the layer of grounds at the bottom.
Although most of the time I prefer to have my coffee prepared as quick as possible, there are also times that I like to slow down and enjoy the process. I feel that this is best done when preparing Greek coffee. Whether you are a heavy or moderate coffee drinker (or even if you don’t drink coffee at all), I hope that if you are ever given a chance to enjoy a cup of Greek coffee that you would accept the offer. And who knows? After seeing this demonstration you may even want to help out with the preparation.