Coffee gives you that extra boost of energy to start your day. It’s also a great drink to have when chatting up with someone, or even when you’re alone reading a book. Regardless, you can’t deny the joy and satisfaction that coffee brings to the world.
From its earliest concept up to the present, coffee preparation has gone through multiple modifications. One of which is the French press method. However, this technique involves a more manual approach, and needs precise preparations and steps in order to achieve a delicious outcome. Luckily for you, this article will guide you through the entire process.
What is a French press?
To begin, the French press was first made in France, hence the name. Although the original source of its design is still up for debate and hasn’t been specified, the Milanese designer, named Attilio Calimani, was the first to patent it, way back in 1929. Several inspired improvements from other known personalities followed thereafter, and people all over world are now able to enjoy the beauty that is the French press.
Despite several design changes, the concept of this device remains more or less the same. A procedure wherein coffee grounds are mixed with hot water inside a kettle-like pot, and then pressed down with a plunger that has a filter system attached to its tip, therefore separating any residue from the final brew.
What makes the French press better than other methods?
One advantage of using a quality French press lies on its ability to extract essential oils from your coffee grounds, which ordinary paper filters cannot replicate. It’s also fairly inexpensive compared to other similar yet technologically-involved counterparts.
But, most coffee enthusiasts tend to choose the French press simply because of the former benefit. The cheaper cost is just an added bonus. Furthermore, this device’s lack of disposable filter use makes it not only more economical, but also better for the environment.
If these positive effects won’t convince you, nothing else will. But, if you can’t wait to try out the French press way, then please read on.
Things You Need To Prepare
Aside from the main press unit, you’ll be needing several item before you can start making delicious French pressed coffees. Here’s a list of what you’ll need:
There’re tons of coffee bean brands out there. Some are imported, while others you can find locally. If you already have a long-time preferred coffee bean product, then you can simply use that. However, if you’re fairly new to the coffee world, you should at least go for the mild variety first.
It’s also good to ask for recommendations, either from a coffee-lover friend, a barista, or from the person selling the beans. There’s also no harm in trying out different kinds, since you’ll never know when you might encounter your next favorite coffee blend.
You can’t exactly make a French press without this. Just like with the previous component, this one also has different brands. To find the best model, do some research like reading buying guides and reviews. Or, get inputs from friends or professionals. Just make sure the one you buy has a reliable filter system.
Precision is very important when making coffee with a French press. As such, you need a kitchen scale in order to get the ideal ratio between coffee and hot water. You can also use a calibrated spoon as an alternative.
Coffee Bean Grinder
The coarseness of the beans is just as important as the quality of a French press’ filter. Grind too fine and you’ll get a gritty brew. But, not grinding enough will result in a weak and diluted coffee.
To get the best result, aim for a breadcrumb-like texture, which is coarse enough not to pass through the filter. Such consistency also allows for optimal extraction of oils from the coffee grounds. If you want less work, get an automatic coffee beans grinder that has an adjustable setting. Otherwise, you can do it with a manual grinder, which is cheaper.
Step By Step Guide To A Delicious French Press Coffee
Start by boiling clean water on a separate kettle.
Grind the Coffee Beans
While waiting for the water to boil, grind your coffee beans per recommendation mentioned above.
Scale and Prepare
Place your opened French press on your kitchen scale, and make sure the number shown is zero. Put your coffee ground in the unit per your intended serving. Ideally, you should measure 7-10 grams of coffee per 1 cup (8 oz.). You can adjust between the 7-10 range depending on how intense (higher) or how mild (lower) you want your coffee.
You also need to consider the max capacity of your French press. So, if your model can brew up to 8 cups, then just multiply the grams needed for such amount, which is usually around 56-80 grams. If you don’t have a scale, you can use the 2 tablespoons per cup trick. But the taste won’t be as great.
Add Hot Water
Once your water boils (ideal temperature is 203 °F), simply pour the right amount inside the press, based on your measurements. If you want to go the extra mile, you can measure the water per cup before you boil it. Or measure on a scale as you pour the hot water.
Wait & Push the Plunger
Pull the plunger of the lid all the way up, and cover the press. Let it steep for at least a minute, then lightly stir the mixture right after. Then, place the lid back again and wait for another 3 minutes before you can finally push the plunger down, and serve. Remember, press down slowly.
Do keep in mind that you can adjust the intensity of the infusion depending on the steeping time after the stir. If you want a milder taste, steep for less than 3 minutes. For a stronger blend, wait a little longer than 3 minutes. However, steeping for too long will make the coffee bitter, so you should transfer the remaining brew for later consumption.
Serve Delicious Coffee
Pour into your favorite cup. Smell the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Take a sip. Enjoy!