Have you ever looked at a French Press Coffee Maker in the store and thought, how does it work? To be honest, there are a few tricks and tips you need to know to get the most out o your press. Whilst they look a little weird and hard to use, they are not and if used properly can make amazing coffee.
Before You begin
If you have just bought a new french press coffee maker, it is best to wipe it out with a warm damp cloth or wash in warm soapy water. Whilst glass and stainless Steel are very safe when coming in contact with food, like any new product, it has come off a factory floor and you don’t know what impurities have been picked up during the manufacturing process. Be careful when washing, not all french press coffee makers are dish washer proof, so check carefully.
Most coffee grounds you buy in the supermarket and ground quite fine for filter coffee. It is important with french presses that you use a medium/course ground coffee. Better still, buy whole beans and invest in a hand grinder, where the coarseness can be set manually. grinding right before making the coffee will ensure the freshest grounds. Investing in a coffee measuring scoop will help ensure you measure out the same amount of coffee each time. A coffee scoop delivered 1/5 ounce (6 grams) per scoop. If I am making 1 cup of coffee I use 2 scoops, because I like my coffee strong, but generally it is 1 – 2 scoops per cup, depending on your preference. Play around until you work out what is right for you. Remember, when I say 1 cup, I am not talking about a little European cup (Expresso), I mean 5-6 ounces per cup.
Boil The Water
When we say boiling water, we don’t really mean boiling – confused? Coffee doesn’t like boiling water. Boiling water is 212F, but coffee prefers 200F, otherwise the coffee grounds wills could, releasing bitter oils. If your kettle does not have a coffee setting, then just boiled the water and wait a minute for the water to come down a little, this should do the trick.
But not all at once. We need to do what is called, letting the grounds bloom. So just add enough water to wet all the grounds and wait 30 – 60 seconds. This helps release CO2 from the grounds and make a better coffee. Once the grounds have bloomed, add the remaining water to your desired level and place the lid on in the closed position, to keep the heat in. Do Not plunge yet!
As eager as you are to try great coffee, you need to wait. Generally 3 – 4 minutes is good. If you go earlier, the coffee may taste a little thin and not full flavoured.
Depress The Filter
Make sure the lid of your french press coffee maker is in the closed position, and gently depress the filter all the way to the bottom. Apply firm but not excessive pressure.
Filter Is Stuck
If having trouble depressing the filter, don’t force it, bring the filter back up, give the coffee a stir and try again. Warning! If your grounds are too fine, the filter will be hard to depress and you risk hot coffee squirting past the filter and our through the lid. This is not a design flaw with the french press, it just means your grounds are too fine and the water can’t pass easily past.
Turn the lid to the open position and pour your freshly brewed hot coffee. You can pour all the way to the bottom, no problem. If you are using a large 34oz press, close the lid and if you have a double walled stainless steel french press, the coffee will stay nice and hot for your 2nd and 3rd coffee.
In most cases you can simply rinse out your french press with warm water. Remember, coffee grounds can go in your garden or compost if you prefer not to put them into land fill.
Did you know, you can also use a french press coffee maker to make cold brew coffee and tea. If you are short on space, invest in a good quality french press and use for all three. If you would like to know which is the best french press to buy read this: 3 Things You Need To Know To Buy The Best French Press …. If you have any other french press questions, we would love to hear them. Send us a message via the website, that way we can help you and create more great posts to inform others. At Olive + Crate we are committed to producing quality products for your home.