Four Keys To Brewing Great Coffee At Home
Contributed by: NAPSA
By Simone Abt
(NC) - A great cup of coffee doesn't happen by chance. There are four fundamentals to coffee making that will ensure a great cup of coffee every time.
"I recommend that the best starting point for making great coffee is to consider it a form of cooking with a precise recipe and measurements," says Parise Milligan, coffee master and district manager, Starbucks Coffee Company. "Coffee lovers should always consider proportion, grind, water and freshness when brewing a cup of coffee at home."
Proportion is key. The rule of thumb for coffee making is two tablespoons of ground coffee for each six ounces of water. Too many grounds result in under-extracted coffee that does not achieve the full flavour of the blend.
"Proportion is the most common coffee making mistake" says Milligan, "And the easiest mistake to solve."
Ensuring the correct grind is also very important. Different brewing methods require different grinds. A grind that is too fine will trap water and result in a bitter, unpleasant brew. A grind that is too coarse leaves coffee weak and without distinguishing characteristics or flavours. Over-extracted coffee tastes much worse than under extracted coffee, so when in doubt regarding the brewing method, always err on the coarse side.
"Coffee connoisseurs agree that the best coffee is made in a traditional coffee press. A coffee press always requires a coarse grind," says Milligan. "If you're not sure, come into your local Starbucks and talk to a barista, they'll help you ensure you are getting the correct grind."
While it may not seem like an important ingredient, coffee is 98 percent water. The type of water used when brewing greatly affects the final taste. Always use clean, fresh water that is filtered or free of impurities. Avoid soft water or well water. Water heated to just off the boil does the best job of extracting the coffee's full range of flavours. Water that is too cool will mute the flavour and dull the coffee's aroma.
"Coffee's biggest enemies are oxygen and moisture," says Milligan. "You can't skimp on freshness."
Coffee must be fresh. Always store coffee in an airtight container at room temperature. For daily use, storing coffee in the refrigerator or freezer can result in moisture from condensation, but if coffee needs to be kept for more than two weeks without being used it should be stored in an airtight container in the freezer. Coffee should be ground fresh each time it is made. Buy your Starbucks Coffee OnLine!