Learn these easy tips and get in the rhythm of making a great pot of French press coffee every morning.
By Annelise McAuliffe
Whether you are camping without electricity, don’t have the counter space for a large machine, or want to avoid using throw away coffee filters, a French press pot is a great solution to make a delicious cup of coffee. Follow these steps to get the perfect cup each and every time.
Before you begin, make sure your press pot is clean, especially the screen attached to the plunger. A filter with build up will add unappetizing flavors to your brew. Be sure to use a medium to course coffee grind in your French press. Anything smaller, and some of the particles may slip through the filter into your mug. Avoid the sludge!
Step One: Measure your coffee
For every eight ounces of coffee you would like to make, add one to two heaping tablespoons of coffee to the empty press pot. For best results, weigh your coffee rather than measuring it by volume. The coarseness of a coffee will alter how it will fill up the tablespoon, so your best bet is a scale. Stumptown recommends 56 grams of coffee for an 8-cup French press or around 7 grams for each cup you would like to make. Every coffee and drinker is different, so find the perfect ratio for you.
Step Two: Heat your water
The best temperature to make coffee at is somewhere just under a boil, around 200 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t want to use a thermometer, bring your water to a boil, turn it off and let it cool for 15 to 30 seconds. If you are not making the full pot, measure your water in a separate container before pouring over the grinds.
Shutterstock: Celal ERDOGDU
Step Three: Steeping
Once the water and grinds are in the press pot together, allow them to sit for one minute. After one minute, use a wooden spoon to stir down the top layer of grinds. A long-handled wooden spoon lets you reach the bottom of the pot and not damage the glass with a metal utensil. Allow the coffee to steep for three more minutes or four minutes in total.
Step Four: Serve
After four minutes push the plunger to the bottom and serve. If you are not ready to drink the entire pot at that time, pour the rest into another container otherwise it will continue to brew with the grinds and become too strong and bitter. Be sure to clean the filter screen well immediately after use so it is ready for the next pot.
Mandatory family outings to the Detroit farmers' market and nightly home-cooked meals cultivated Annelise's respect and curiosity for food. A graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, she spends her free time in New York City recipe testing, eating breakfast all day, and dreaming up international culinary adventures.