Me and Maria (Alexander von Bronewski Manufaktur & Feinschmuck ) went for our annual Indian Summer Bivouac up the hill for less than 24 hours – offline. A great time to exercise, being outdoors, collecting the thoughts, getting inspired, watching shootingstars, drinking some good redwine, roasting some sausages, watching a fire burn, watching deer, eating blueberries, making good coffee, trying to name the surrounding mountains and exploring new paths – priceless!
We probably caught one of the last weekends for our bivouac in the alps. Probably a week to late, the yellow leaves already dropped down. After about close to 3 hours we reached the summit and our campground. On the way up there I spotted a badly wounded tree which blood/resin I took as a fire starter. Two years ago I collected some wood and leaned it to a tree, it was still there so the fire was started really quick. We barbecued some Frankfurter/Krakenand had a good bottle of red wine.
The night was very mild for end of october but quite windy. Tillmann had his sheep skin and thick felt army blanket which were sufficient for the night. Sunrise was great and a task on this trip was to review the abilities of the Trangia alcohol stove with non conform add ons.
First task was to get good coffee, with the Bialetti espresso maker he worked just great.
Second task was to heat up the De Buyer fried egg pan which worked perfect as well.
Unintentionally the Trangia frying pan served as a water cup for Tillmann and the 2 pots for collecting blueberries.
It was a great trip, perfect weather and very comfortable. The Trangia stove added very much to its comfort. The Trangia cooking system is a absolute fool proof compact way to dine outdoors. Alcohol is widely available to run it and has the huge plus that its smell is way better when spilling some of the content than petroleum, diesel or gasoline. Gas cartridges I somehow dislike since they are always a big hassle to get, produce a lot of litter and can not used up all the way. (and are pricy)
If you wonder why this images look somehow familiar to you check a post about this spot two years ago.(it was more than 2 weeks earlier, thats why the leafs look much nicer)
Pan roasted coffee and Bialetti espresso: As a regular reader you might know I use the Whiley Pop Popcorn Maker to roast my coffee. But I actually never roasted coffee beans in a pan before today. It is possible but I have to tell you that a lot of movement is involved shaking the iron or iron cast pan every 5 seconds for about 20 minutes. So you will earn you breakfast after it for sure.
So this is how I did it:
– Use a proper pan, iron or iron cast is perfect. One with a higher rim is absolute perfect.
– Fill it with geen coffee beans just a bit less than all the ground is covered. They will expand to about double the size.
– The most tricky part is how to know the right temperature of you oven plate. I would start with 2/3 of the maximum. E.g. I got 9 max. so I choose 6 or 7.
– Too hot will burn the beans to fast. You sould be able to roast the beans for more than 20 minutes until they are dark brown.
– Constantly shake the pan with the cover and make sure they are evenly covering the whole surface of the pan.
– Avoid dark spots by not moving the beans around, about max. 5 seconds is ok.
– After 10 minutes you should hear the first cracks of the beans
– Ater 20 minutes you should hear the second cracks, this about the time when the beans
are close to be ready.
– Wait for the beans to be a darkish brown close to black for espresso, dark brown for regular coffee.
– Fill the roasted beans in a huge bowl and shake off the skins of the beans, your coffee will taste bitter if you leave them with the beans.
– Cool them down and fill them in a jar.
– Keep the cover from the jar open for about a day so the beans can breath out the carbon monoxide
– After about 24hours the coffee is ready to be grinded and ready to drink.
The cheapest, one of the most tasting and most joyful method to make coffee is using the typical Bialetti Espresso maker. A 3 or 4 cup sized Bialetti is the perfect choice for a breakfast for two. Not too much attention is needed, the smell of fresh made coffee is distributed wonderfully through the whole apartment and the end is announced by a nice bubbling sound of the espresso maker.
Hiking and bivouac in the Lecknertal Last friday Maria and me went for camping straight after work. Before the temperature drops and snow comes, this might be the last time at higher altitude without the snowshoes. Weather-reports were great for the day/night so we only packed the bivouac bag, no tent and the sleeping bags. It was very evident that the indian summer/autumn was beginning much earlier up there, the leaves turn already yellow and brown. The hike to the “summit” was much longer than we thought, I would say about 2 hours. After we arrived I went straight to collect some wood for the fire while Maria prepared the camp. It quickly went dark and we had a great sunset. We roasted some sausages on sticks and had a bottle of bordeaux nouveau. At higher altitude and without the artificial light of cites, the stars are much more visible and brighter up there and the milky way looks like a cloud, so many stars you can see. When sleeping outdoors you tend to wake up more, but you really don’t mind if you see the stars above you. Next morning we woke up exactly at sunrise at about 7am (at least me) and I prepared some coffee with the bialetti. We had doubt that the sparkling water we brought might taste sour in the coffee – and yes it does. So another lesson learned.
A great adventure, next time we come back there will be snow and the retired early birds on cross country skies will already made the tracks to the peak.