Colorado

Fueling the Fire of Entrepreneurship – Colorado Companies to Watch

Steven Groves standing by the rail at City Hall Event venue overlooking the Terminal Kings displayLast Friday I was able to attend an event they were a part of at the City Hall event venue and met a great group of people - Melodie Reagan of i2i WorkForce, Sam Bailey from the Colorado State Office of Economic Development and International Trade, Debra Zimmer from ExpertMarketingCoach.com, Sandy Morris from Lift-Off Communications and Pat & Larry Nelson of W3W3 Talk Radio.  We drank wine, talked about Colorado business with Sam and checked a new art project on display at the City Hall Event Space.  I really enjoyed myself and here are several pics from the event that I think you’ll enjoy posted on Facebook.

I guess I knew it would happen eventually.  After serving a a volunteer on the OTEF board for several years and helping stage the Arizona Entrepreneurship Conference for the first five years of it’s life, I should have expected to get invovled in something entrepreneurial in Colorado before long – and I did.  I like the mission of recognizing these second stage companies that represent the bulwark of our economy and I’ll do what i can to help in the mission.

Cast Iron Cookware – Care and Seasoning 101
Cookware

Cast Iron Cookware – Care and Seasoning 101

I walked into my local coffee shop to write this post and a friend behind the counter commented ‘you mean people don’t know how to season their cast iron?’  She then proceeded to tell me about a relative of hers that put her cast iron in the dishwasher to clean it. When she was done telling her tale, I suggested that there was a perfect example – many people do NOT know how to properly season cast iron or they take the word of the manufacturer that it is properly ‘pre-seasoned’.

My cast iron cookware has been handed down to me or acquired via gift and garage sale.  I really like cooking in cast iron when I can for several reasons, primary of which is that it holds heat beautifully and radiates a constant temperature, which in this day of electric ranges with constantly fluctuating temperatures is a treat.  

Be your own ‘Iron Chef’ and hack a recipe – a Parmesan / Sage Pork Cutlet
Foodie

Be your own ‘Iron Chef’ and hack a recipe – a Parmesan / Sage Pork Cutlet

One of the ideas I want to promote and explore using this site is the idea of a ‘hack’, in a very positive way.  My model is the people at LifeHacker.com, who share ‘Tips, tricks, and downloads for getting things done.’  I like a lot of the ideas they promote, which are simply shortcuts or ideas that can make life a bit easier – a ‘hack’ then is not a cheat, not dishonest or disingenuous, just a shortcut or better way to get something done quicker, better or easier.  Maybe using something in a way the manufacturer did not intend.

 

An example is my use of a recipe that I found on a fav online recipe site – a really excellent recipe for a bone-in pork chop recipe.  The hack is that I took and modified a bit to fit an exchange of pork loin cutlet.  Same delicious tastes and maybe even better using the loin portion.  This is something I really like about competitive cooking shows.   The format is often ‘here – take this food ingredient and make something tasty’ usually with some kind of constraint like time or cooking over a fire lit with a couple of twigs.   Those chefs are definitely hacking; using what they know about cooking tools and technique and applying it in unique ways that fit into the challenge.

 

This recipe is just like that – I took the Parmesan Sage Bone-in Pork Chop recipe and applied it to a loin cutlet. 

Coffee From Mazatlan – in your kitchen quick…
Coffee

Coffee From Mazatlan – in your kitchen quick…

It happened again today… after I finished my morning allocation of  coffee from the drip coffee machine at home, I wanted another cuppa coffee, but did not really want to brew a whole pot.

 

I reminisced for a moment about when I was in Mazatlan and in the morning the Barista at the coffee shop didn’t have a fancy brewer, no urn to hold coffee and dispense from.  What I remembered they did have though was a great tasting cup of coffee… and then I remembered my own version for the one-cup-at-a-time option – a filtercone brewer.

 

I’ve tried coffees from a huge variety of brewing tactics – single-source coffee from a coffee-siphon, a french press, with the Clover brewer (from the world’s corner coffee shop), cowboy coffee over a campfire and quite possibly everything in between.  Filtercone brewers are probably the simplest, quickest way to brew a single cup of coffee.  It is not using freeze-dried crystals (ughh) or any great science – it’s coffee, water, gravity and time.  The people at SweetMarias’com (excellent, detailed discussion BTW) go into the science a bit deeper than I intend to, but as I setup my rig and started to make a single cup of coffee, I realized that many people might have seen these things in the store and wondered first, what is that?  and if they knew WHAT it was they might wonder, ‘how does that work?’ – I love how inspiration visits me sometimes :).

 

Here we go, first collect the hardware & software -

  • Hardware
    • Electric kettle
    • Filtercone brewer / filter
    • Coffee cup
  • Software
    • Ground coffee – regular grind will do, espresso grind is better

 

Of course a stove kettle would work just as well, but the electric ones – wow, they boil water fast!

 

Assembly and prep is about 15 seconds, maybe 30 seconds  if you wash the filter as suggested by Sweet Marie’s; I had not been, but it does make sense – probably will going forward.  Assemble the rig by placing the filter in the brewer and spoon in your favorite coffee.  I use 2 tablespoons per cup of water – not as precise as some many grams of coffee per ounces of water, but a good rule of thumb.

 

Filtercone brewer in bloom at StevenGroves.com

Next douse the grounds with a bit of water just off the boil and let it bloom, which means let it stand for a bit as the hot water draws the coffee oils out of the bean.  This is really visible in a coffee press, but the effect is diminished in this preparation. Pour the rest of the water slowly into the grounds, being careful not to pour too quickly and run over the top of the brewer.  The water will run through the grounds, the filter holds the grounds as the water seeps through and in just a few minutes – voila, a fresh brewed and very tasty cup of coffee.

 

Clean up is just as quick – pour out the remainder of  water, pull the paper filter from the brewer, rinse out or wash the brewer itself and your done!

 

Enjoy your cuppa’ joe there you Gypsy Bohemian… you’ve worked hard for it.

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