Coffee is a morning essential for many working adults. It’s got that rich, bitter taste, and the caffeine inside really sets you up for the whole day. Because of this, it’s no wonder that many people have decided to take matters into their own hands and brew coffee themselves. Instant and ordered coffee is fine, but there’s just something about making coffee yourself that makes each cup that more fulfilling.
If you’re one of the many people interested in making coffee yourself, then you’ve come to the right place. Here are some of the best techniques used to making coffee from the comfort of your own home.
Use the Right Coffee Beans
Coffee beans are produced from all over the world, and each one has its own distinct flavor and texture that you’ll end up tasting when you drink it. Depending on your personal preference, you may want beans that offer more caffeine or taste less bitter. Before you buy the first bag of coffee beans you see on the supermarket shelf, think about the coffee bean’s flavor and whether or not you’d enjoy it. It’s best to do your research and look up the different types of coffee beans if you really want to get into brewing coffee yourself.
Then, there’s freshness. Like with many plant-based products, coffee beans are best brewed when fresh. Fresh coffee beans last for about a few days, and they only get worse in condition after that. That means if you want to enjoy fresh, brewed coffee every morning, we recommend going to the supermarket to order coffee beans twice or thrice a week for good measure. It may be a hassle, especially if you only shop once a week for groceries, but it will make all the difference for your vital morning cup of coffee.
Store the Coffee Beans Properly
Coffee beans are best brewed up to a few days after they’re roasted, but that doesn’t mean they can be placed anywhere. Roasted coffee beans go bad really quickly under two conditions - under light and in oxygen. For these reasons, the best place to store coffee beans is in a dimly lit area (such as inside a cabinet) using an airtight container such as a glass canning jar. In the same vein, if you spot open coffee beans for display, it’s best if you don’t buy them. We personally recommend buying from local roasters, as they’ll more likely than not store them in the right conditions, and they’ll be fresh, too.
Balance Price and Flavor
Like with most things, the more expensive the product, in general, the better it is. For coffee, there are certainly great flavors at affordable prices, but many of the best brews can only be achieved with premium roasted beans. This means you’ll have to shell out more money if you want to enjoy a premium cup in the morning.
As such, your best option is to balance both price and flavor. Do you go for the expensive, exotic beans, or do you save some money with your average brew? A possible way to keep things interesting is to buy the more expensive beans on occasion, so you’ll have something to look forward to every now and then.
Invest in a Good Filter
We mentioned balancing price and flavor with coffee beans, but you really shouldn’t cheap out on a filter. The quality of the filter can make or break good coffee. Bad filters get rid of all the complex and exotic flavors that may have been in your coffee beans. Good filters, on the other hand, allow the flavor to really seep into the coffee without bringing in any flavor of its own. The ideal filter papers are oxygen-bleached, so be on the lookout for those if you ever go shopping next time.
If you’re not a fan of buying filter paper every now and then, you can invest in a reusable metal filter. Unfortunately, cheap metal filters aren’t very good, as you can even taste the filter in your coffee with some of them. If you want a good metal filter, you’ll want a gold-plated one, as it will really bring out the flavor from the coffee without adding in its own. Just don’t grind the coffee too finely or it’ll pass through the filter.
Use the Right Water
If you’re going out of your way to brewing coffee for yourself, you might as well start investing in a charcoal filter. The water used in making coffee is just as important as the coffee beans themselves, as they’re what carry the flavor over from the beans. Your home tap water won’t cut it, especially when it’s filled with substances such as chlorine. And no, heating or boiling it won’t get rid of the flavor.
Your best options are to either buy bottled mineral water or use a filter for your tap. The filter gets rid of any external factors that may affect the flavor. Alternatively, you could also go for spring water if you’re feeling a little fancy. Keep in mind, though - you should never use pure or distilled water. Sure, we don’t want chlorine or any foreign substances, but we still want to keep the minerals found in good water. These minerals add to the flavor of coffee, and distilled water does not provide that.
Clean Your Equipment Regularly
Coffee equipment needs to be cleaned on a regular basis if you want to make premium coffee all year round. Ideally, you should clean them every two to three weeks as needed. There are also specialized cleaners for coffee equipment to prevent any possible changes in the taste of your next coffee brew.
Making coffee is therapeutic and rewarding. But it can also be expensive and not worth the trouble for some. If you’re willing to put in the time and effort to make your own coffee, though, then you won’t regret it, especially with a great cup of coffee right at your fingertips.