Grab your coffee gear and let’s learn how to make coffee with a French press. This is not as hard or as complicated at is it might seem. With just a few of the right utensils, espresso machine accessories and you’ll be enjoying some of the finest tasting coffee you’ve ever had. Nothing tastes as good as home made stuff right? Okay, are you ready? Here’s what you need. A large vacuum sealed room with scientifically measured air purity of less than 1000 ppm particulates… I joke, I joke 😉 Okay, for real, let’s get started.
How to make coffee with a French press
You’ll need a French press coffee maker or French press coffee pot. What these are also called a coffee press, coffee plunger or the French cafetiere a piston. Most of us also call these Bodum coffee makers because for North Americans, the stainless French press or French presses in general have become synonymous with Bodum. It doesn’t matter if you have a 1 cup French press or an 8 cup French press, you could also use a travel French press or camping French press. I’ll be using my stainless steel French press that is an eight cup stainless steel French press coffee maker. Because frankly, they’re not really 8 cups as we know it. More like 4 ounce cups which is pretty tiny.
So, carrying on with our how to make coffee with a French press we have our French press, arguably the most important item in French press coffee, hence the name. Now in my opinion, the really crucial elements to any decent coffee is the coffee beans you choose and the water you have available. So we’re going to take some coffee, anything from espresso coffee beans if you like a nice strong dark roast to 100 Kona coffee for an authentic Hawaiian experience of even just your regular Brazilian coffee. If you’re looking for a recommendation then you can go with Lavazza Rossa or Lavazza Blue available at Amazon, and this is for an authentic Italian coffee experience. Now something you might not know, is that even though it is thought that the French invented the French press (hence its name), it was an Italian who perfected it and first patented it.
When grinding your beans set the coffee grind of your burr grinder to coarse. Some makes of burr coffee grinders are the Cuisinart coffee grinder, the KitchenAid coffee grinder and the Dualit coffee grinder. If you don’t have a burr grinder that’s okay, use a blade coffee grinder but grind or chop the coffee beans for a coarse texture. Have a look at my home page for a picture of what coarse ground coffee looks like. You’re sort of going for a kosher salt type look.
Choosing the coffee when learning how to make coffee with a French press
Now add the coarse ground coffee into your French press. Obviously you’ve taking the lid and plunger off. I like to use a stainless steel coffee spoon or if you’re really fancy a silver coffee spoon and measure about 1 to 2 tablespoons of coffee per 8 ounces of water. Here you will have to adjust according to your own taste and how strong you like your coffee to taste. I should have mentioned that while we were grinding our coffee we should have set the kettle to boil. I like to use distilled water if I’m just tasting a new coffee for the first time, but you can use any good clean water that you like. Distilled water has all impurities and aromas taking out so it leaves not trace of itself in the coffee profile.
When the water has boiled, turn it off and just when you can no longer here the bubbling boil of the water, pour it into the French press coffee maker leaving about 2 inches of room at the brim. Place the lid with plunger and screen back onto the French press beaker, placing the screen just on top of the water level. DON’T plunge the plunger and screen all the way down at this point. Set your timer for 3 minutes, though going up to 10 minutes will not hurt.
After the 3 minutes is up, press the plunger all the way to the bottom of the French press beaker and pour out the French press coffee for you and yours. This is making French press coffee the easy way. The screen has now trapped the coffee grounds at the bottom of the beaker. Now a fair warning to all of you. After 10 to 15 minutes you’ll notice that your French press coffee will start to turn bitter. This is becuase those ground coffee beans are still trapped and mixing with the water. So if you want to enjoy some of your French press coffee later without the bitter taste, then decant all the remaining coffee into a thermal coffee mug or any mug and just reheat it on the stove or if you have to in the microwave when you’re ready to enjoy.
That my friends is how to make coffee with a French press. Let me know how it worked out for you. Enjoy!