How’s about this for a successful New Year’s Resolution: I gave up coffee in 1989! That’s 25 years. And I have kept to it. Mostly because it gives me a headache and makes me feel normal when I drink it, but then awful when I don’t drink it. Who wants those massive ups and downs? And who wants to be chained to the slavery of “I have to have my cup of coffee by x o’clock or I feel terrible – and I’m irritable and vile to everyone around me”? So, I know that most New Year’s Resolutions have crashed and burned by 4pm on January 2nd, but not this one. For many years after I drank tea (which has some caffeine in) and diet sodas (which have caffeine in) but eventually (2007) I gave all caffeine up. And I feel much better for it. I don’t get that crushing, yawny fatigue and hungoverish, shakey, miserable morning paralysis, like you haven’t slept enough.
So, I like a caffeine-free hot drink. And this week I’ve been testing Barleycup. Incidentally, when I was a child my Dad went out into the woods and dug up some roots (dandelion, my Mum says) dried them, ground them in our coffee grinder and made a hot drink out of it. Suffice it to say, it wasn’t good, and we haven’t let him forget it. But he had a go. The point is, it’s not that easy to make tasty drinks out of things other than a) coffee, b) tea and c) cocoa.
Barleycup is lovely – really creamy and mellow, and not bitter at all! It’s made from roasted barley, rye and chicory, and it’s gluten-free (which I like). You make it just like instant coffee and add milk (or don’t) – at 10 cals a cup. It’s a GOOD thing, in my book, that I didn’t notice as I was drinking it, while chatting on the phone. Often I wince because a hot drink is bitter (overstewed chamomile anyone?) – so this slipped down lovely and warm, and comforting. Try it! Get powder, granules, organic or with Dandelion (£2/100g approx) from healthfood shops or online. www.barleycup.co.uk