Jumat, 14 November 2008

Coffea arabica


According to legend, human cultivation of coffee began after goats in Ethiopia were seen becoming frisky after eating the leaves and fruits of the coffee tree. In reality, human consumption of coffee fruits probably began long before humans took up pastoralism. In Ethiopia there are still some locales where people drink a tisane made from the leaves of the coffee tree.

The first written record of coffee made from roasted coffee beans comes from Arabian scholars who wrote that it was useful in prolonging their working hours. The Arab innovation of making a brew from roasted beans, spread first among the Egyptians and Turks and later on found its way around the world.

Coffea arabica (pronounced /əˈræbɪkə/) is a species of coffee indigenous to Ethiopia and Yemen. It is also known as the "coffee shrub of Arabia", "mountain coffee" or "arabica coffee". Coffea arabica is believed to be the first species of coffee to be cultivated, being grown in southwest Arabia for well over 1,000 years. It is considered to produce better coffee than the other major commercially grown coffee species, Coffea canephora (robusta). Arabica contains less caffeine than any other commercially cultivated species of coffee. Wild plants grow to between 9 and 12 m tall, and have an open branching system; the leaves are opposite, simple elliptic-ovate to oblong, 6-12 cm long and 4-8 cm broad, glossy dark green. The flowers are white, 10-15 mm in diameter and grow in axillary clusters. The fruit is a drupe (though commonly called a "berry") 10-15 mm in diameter, maturing bright red to purple and typically contain two seeds (the coffee 'bean').

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