Coffee is an essential part of my day, and I know well enough that I am not the only person who cannot go a day without it. I do not know if this is addiction or dependence, but I just really believe in the benefits of coffee. Now, of course, given my love for caffeine, it is more practical for me to brew coffee at home. I cannot always drop by my favourite coffee shop and spend on a nice cup of coffee just to get me going. This is exactly why over the years, I tried learning the craft of making the perfectly brewed coffee that I love. I bet you are interested to know all these things I have learned; so, let me share these to you!
There are a lot of ways to brew coffee. However, the best method for me is the pour-over method. I have tried other methods in the past and so far, this one gives the best results. I know a lot of coffee lovers would agree! So, you start by boiling water in a kettle. While bringing it to a boil, grind your coffee beans to uniform consistency— if you are using whole coffee beans.
Then, place the filter in your coffee brewer. Make sure that you rinse it with hot water to remove the papery residue on the filter and to warm up the brewer. This is the best way to keep your coffee hot for a longer period. After rinsing, get rid of the water.
Add your coffee grounds to the filter. After a minute of removing water from the heat or when its temperature is anywhere between 195°F and 205°F, slowly pour it over the grounds— just enough to saturate them completely. Stop pouring the water right before the coffee drips to release the remaining carbon dioxide.
Lastly, slowly pour the remaining water over the grounds. Keep it in the dripper, ensuring that it is ½ to ¾ full. This will take about three to four minutes. Then, you can finally remove the filter and enjoy your cup of coffee.
Tips for Brewing the Best Cup of Coffee
1. Use whole coffee beans
You love your early morning runs to your favourite coffee shop just because the baristas make far better coffee than you do at home, and you wonder why. Well, the real secret is in using fresh, whole coffee beans!
A great cup of coffee is only as good as the beans you use to make it. Many of us make the mistake of buying pre-ground coffee and expect to make the best cup.
Well, those you buy from the groceries have been there for months; and coffee peaks just days after it has been roasted. It is best consumed within a month after roasting. Beyond that, it just will never be as good as you want it to be.
You can buy whole coffee beans from local coffee shops. These coffee beans are typically roasted in small batches; and yes, that is the secret you have been missing out.
2. Ground coffee beans on the spot
If you have the time, it is better to ground coffee beans on the spot— just right before brewing. When you do, be mindful of size and consistency.
If you ground too coarsely, it will weaken the coffee. Then, if you ground too fine, it will over-extract the coffee, resulting to an extremely bitter taste. So, you just want to hit the middle ground.
The best way to achieve a consistent grind is using an automatic burr grinder. However, this may not be practical for most people. So, the cheaper alternative is manual hand mill. You may opt for a blade grinder but it is not highly recommended. It results in inconsistency in size, which may over-extract the coffee.
3. Use the right water
Having the right water, of course, is just as important as having the right coffee beans. It should always be of the highest quality in order for it not to compromise the best-tasting coffee you make.
You would not want to use hard water full of ions and minerals. These do not bond well with the dissolved particles of coffee, resulting in under-extraction. Also, the more minerals there are the greater the buildups form in your coffee maker. So, you have to descale more often.
At the same time, heavily distilled or filtered water may not also be good, especially for your coffee maker. The lack of ions and minerals will force the water to make up for the deficiency, leaching minerals out of the machine’s metal parts. Over time, this degrades its performance. It also leads to over-extraction since there is greater room for bonds.
4. Set the right temperature
Make sure that the temperature is somewhere between 195°F and 205°F. Higher-end models have a manual temperature adjustment feature; so, you would not have a hard time obtaining the required temperature settings. To check the temperature, run the coffee maker without any coffee in the hopper. Then, measure the temperature using a thermometer.
If possible, you can also measure the temperature while brewing your coffee. If it does not reach at least 195°F, try pre-boiling the water in a kettle. If it still does not work, you need to consider getting a better coffee maker.
Be mindful not to exceed the temperature limit of 205°F. Otherwise, you will burn your coffee.
5. Pre-infuse coffee grounds
Pre-infusing coffee grounds is necessary to prepare your coffee. It helps release the remaining carbon dioxide from the roasting process. Otherwise, the carbon dioxide will repel the water during the brewing process, weakening the brew.
To perform this, you first have to preheat water in a kettle to 200°F. While letting it boil, insert a filter into the hopper. Then, add the coffee grounds.
Slowly pour the water over the grounds, making sure that they all get wet enough. Let them sit for about 45 seconds, allowing them to de-gas.
To Sum It Up…
See, brewing the perfect cup of coffee does not have to be that hard! With the right ingredients, coffee maker, and the patience to perfect your process, you can definitely make your own coffee just the way you love it!
Do you have any other useful tip? How do you brew your own coffee at home? Feel free to share your ideas with us! If you have questions or suggestions, do not hesitate to reach out!