Maybe, if you are a coffee lover, you have heard of the hot new way to make coffee. Here in The Bachelor’s Kitchen, we like a good cup of coffee or two every day. We were intrigued when we heard about the Aeropress.
What we discovered was one of the best cups of coffee we’ve ever had.
The Aeropress combines elements of a french press with the pressure aspect of an espresso maker. It is inexpensive, easy to use and takes no more time than any other coffee brewing method.
This device consists of a few simple plastic and rubber parts, To go with it are small paper filter discs. The filter papers fit into a round grated part that fastens onto the main body of the ‘Press. There is a rubber-tipped plunger that fits into that body from the other end. A funnel also fits onto the main body to add the ground coffee. There is also a stirring paddle. In addition, you’ll need a sturdy cup or mug and the means to heat water, preferably to the desired temperature.
The kit also comes with a coffee measuring scoop that gives the amount for one espresso shot. The main body is marked for one through four espresso shots.
The coffee is even better if you used freshly ground beans. Here in The Bachelor’s Kitchen, we like to use a hand-crank burr grinder instead of the common blade style grinder. We think the difference is worth the extra effort. You get a more even grind than with the blade grinders.
A medium grind works best. Too fine and it becomes very hard to push down the plunger. Too coarse and not all the coffee goodness is extracted.
The ideal temperature for your water is about 175 degrees (F). If you use a tea kettle, stick your food thermometer down the spout so you can measure the temperature. A better but more expensive solution is to buy a programmable electric kettle that allows you to set the desired temperature.
So, now you should have your cup in place, the Aeropress in position and loaded with ground coffee and hot water at the correct temperature. Slowly pour in enough water to reach the desired point on the ‘Press. Try to get all of the grounds wet first. Use the stirring paddle that comes with the ‘Press to stir the grounds and water well. Next, insert the plunger and gently push it down. At a point just after you are halfway down, it will become very hard to push the plunger as air pressure is being built up. But once you get past that point, it will be easier. Also, you will hear a hissing sound. This is compressed air being pushed through the grounds with the water, just like an Espresso machine. The machine uses steam to get that pressure, so in some ways, this Aeropress method is safer. Also, the learning curve is much faster.
Make sure the plunger is firmly against the grounds and then remove the ‘Press from your sturdy mug. You will notice the creamy, light-colored crema, another espresso-like quality you cannot get with a regular drip coffee maker.
All that’s left is adding a bit more hot water if you want coffee, not espresso. It’s a little more work, but the quality and taste are worth it.