How to Make Good Coffee

There are many ways of brewing coffee: in filter pots, plunger pots (cafetières), and electric drip coffee makers, to name but a few. You can make consistently good coffee which­ever method you choose if you observe the following rules.

  • How to brew coffee
    Coffee should be stored in an airtight container in the freezer: any contact with air causes loss of flavour. Experiment until you find a blend you like then buy whole beans and delay grinding until the last moment. The finer the beans are ground, the more rapidly the flavour becomes stale and bitter.
  • Heat water to just under boiling point, about 95°C (203°F), or bring the water to a boil and then allow it to cool for 2–3 minutes before pouring it over the coffee. A higher temperature will extract too much of the coffee solids, giving a bitter taste; a lower temperature will not extract enough flavour, resulting in a weak coffee. The coffee should be in contact with the water for about 2 minutes only. Strong coffee is achieved not by allowing the coffee to brew longer, but by using more ground coffee per cup.
  • To make medium–strong coffee, allow 2 heaped tablespoons of ground coffee per 3⁄4 cup (180 ml) of water. If you want weaker coffee, use the same measure of coffee but add more hot water.
 

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