This Step-by-Step Guide Will Teach You How To Make French Press Coffee Like a Pro.
One can geek out over coffee in innumerable ways. Ultimately, though, all we want is a steaming mug of coffee to get us through the morning. Uncomplicated joy
The French press is a simple and inexpensive method for preparing delicious coffee. Here's the lowdown on making a fantastic pot of French press coffee.
A French press is a type of coffee maker that uses hot water to steep the grounds, followed by a press to extract the grounds.
It's one of the quickest and easiest ways to brew a delicious pot of coffee, second only to the drip variety. In addition, unlike the pour over and the Aeropress, multiple cups of coffee can be brewed simultaneously. Coffee that has been left to sit directly on the grounds for an extended period of time develops a bitter taste and an oily texture, which may put some people off.
It took some time for me to appreciate French press coffee. After finishing college, my roommate and her boyfriend gave me a French press and a blade grinder, and I have been a dedicated coffee brewer ever since. Although I brewed it frequently, I never enjoyed the taste or appearance. In the end, I decided to switch to the Aeropress, which quickly produces a high-quality cup of coffee with minimal effort.
Then I married this man who, for some strange reason, always makes me coffee before I get out of bed. His use of a French press as his preferred method of brewing was one of the factors that ultimately won me over. Being a fan of French press coffee is due to more than just enjoying it in the comfort of my own bed (though that helps). There was one crucial piece to my process that I had been missing all along: the right grinder.
Poorly ground coffee with too much fine grit that makes the pressed coffee muddy and bitter, and using water that is either too hot and scorches the grounds or too cold and doesn't extract fully, are the two main culprits in making subpar French press coffee.
In my opinion, these are the two most overlooked, yet easily corrected, factors. In addition to a burr grinder and an awareness of how hot your water is,
What I learned is that brewing at the ideal temperature is simple (I just let the water sit for a minute after it boils).
Then there's the chopping machine. Good French press coffee is one of the few culinary procedures that can only be accomplished with one specific appliance.
Reasons why Blade grinders like this one work fine for making coffee for a drip machine or other methods that don't require as finely ground of a powder as a French press does. Grains that are too small to be stopped by the filter will end up in your cup as sediment and will be over-extracted, leaving your coffee bitter. The burr grinder is the best option for uniformly grinding all the coffee beans into a fine powder.
If the coffee you make in a French press is too bitter or has a lot of sediment at the bottom, you may want to switch to a burr grinder. You can also have your neighborhood coffee shop do the grinding for you using high-quality commercial equipment.
However, other brewing methods, such as the Chemex, other pour over, or the Aeropress, may be more convenient if you don't have room for a burr grinder. More on these techniques to come.
You can, however, get much more specialized and nerdy than that when discussing French press. Take a look at how seriously different coffee chains like Stumptown, Intelligentsia, Blue Bottle, and Serious Eats take things like gram weight and brew time. Whew
I don't think it's necessary to argue about the ideal ratio of 40 to 36 grams of grounds to water, or whether you should weigh your beans and water instead of using a measuring cup.
I know that some of you will disagree with me, but if coffee is your thing, you can always find something to fiddle with. Like many other aspects of cooking, coffee can be improved and tweaked to your heart's content, and the results can be quite satisfying.
However, if you're just getting started with French press, I find that this is the most straightforward approach that covers the bases without getting too technical. Coffee and water can be measured by weight instead of volume if that is more convenient for you. You can be as picky as you like about how long each roast needs to brew. I’m following close behind.
However, for the time being, let's focus on the fundamentals. After all, it's just coffee, and I really hope that more of you will find your morning sustenance in a cup of French press because it's so delicious when done (mostly) right.
The quantity described here is 32 ounces, which is the standard volume for a French press and yields about four cups of coffee. But what if you need or want a different amount of money? The following is a table showing approximate volume ratios. You should know that the coffee beans are weighed before they are ground.
- One serving is equal to eight fluid ounces of water and two tablespoons of ground coffee.
- 2 cups water (16 ounces) and 1/4 cup coffee beans serve 2 people.
- For four servings, use 1/2 cup of coffee beans and 4 cups of water (32 ounces total).
- For 8 servings, use 1 cup of coffee beans and 8 cups of water (64 fluid ounces).
- Fat 0.0 g (0 0%)
- Saturated 0.0 g (0 0%)
- Protein 0.0 g (0 1%)
- Sodium 10.1 mg (0 4%)
- 1/2 cup
beans that have just been roasted
- 4 cups
Ideally, a 32-ounce French press would be used.
Kettle, either electric OR stovetop
(Optional) A thermometer that displays the temperature instantly
Get out your measuring cups! Take the coffee beans and divide them into halves. (Or, if your coffee pot is smaller than 32 ounces, use the coffee proportions chart above.) )
Put the coffee beans through the grinder. Put the beans through the burr grinder's coarsest setting. If you don't have access to a burr grinder, you can still get good results using a blade grinder by grinding in short, sharp bursts and stopping every two seconds to invert the grinder and give it a sharp shake while still holding the lid down. Rough and coarse, but still uniform in size, without a lot of fine grit, is ideal for coffee grounds. Stumptown suggests a size and form analogous to "breadcrumbs" Empty the grounds into a French press, and
Boil the water, then let it sit at room temperature for a minute. To make coffee, bring 4 cups of cold water to a boil in a stovetop or electric kettle, then let it sit undisturbed for 1 minute. (Or, for brews smaller than 32 ounces, use the coffee measurement guide above.) Coffee made in a French press requires water heated to 195 degrees Fahrenheit. This is significantly lower than the boiling point, which, at sea level, is 212 degrees Fahrenheit. It's best to use a thermometer if you want to be absolutely certain that the temperature is correct. Alternatively, select "coffee" if your kettle has programmable temperature settings. ")
Place the water into the French press. Prepare a French press by filling it with water.
Shake the pot. Be sure to use an up-and-down motion to stir the mixture well.
Let it sit for 4 minutes. Steep for 4 minutes for a strong cup of coffee. Learn the intricacies of your French press by experimenting with various coffee roasts and steeping times.
Jam the press The timer will go off, and you should immediately press the plunger all the way to the bottom. You should down that cup of coffee right now.
In the interest of brevity, we left out the next step of warming the French press from the instructions above. To preheat the French press for use, you can boil some water and rinse it out in the morning if you remember to do so.
If you are not going to drink the coffee right away, transfer it to a carafe to avoid letting it sit on the grounds and turn bitter. A thermal carafe is perfect for preserving the temperature of your beverage.
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