By Ed Arvidson
Two alternatives to your electric drip brewer
that are ideal for producing individual cups of coffee are the infusion
method and the direct pour-over method.
The Infusion Method
infusion method is commonly referred to as the French press or plunger-pot
method. This method produces an excellent, smooth cup of coffee. French
presses come in various sizes, but the most common are two-cup and
To make coffee with the plunger pot, hold down
the lid securely, pull the center knob drawing the filter to the top
of the pot, and then remove the entire lid, rod, and filter assembly.
Next, add the ground coffee. The coffee should be ground to a very
coarse consistency (similar to raw sugar or very coarse sand). Use
two level tablespoons for every six ounces of water. A coarse grind
is used to allow the plunger to be pushed down easily and to ensure
that the coffee will not be over-extracted, producing a bitter cup.
Pour the appropriate amount of 200° F brewing
water over the coffee. Replace the filter/lid assembly (to help maintain
water temperature), but do not push the filter down into the water.
Let the coffee steep for three to four minutes. The coffee grounds
will float to the top of the water and form a crust, known as the
Now, gently push the rod down, forcing the filter
to the bottom of the pot. This will trap the coffee grounds against
the bottom of the pot. The coffee is now ready to serve. Do not remove
the lid and the filter until all the coffee has been poured from the
Manual Pour-Over Method
The manual pour-over method is based on the same
principles as the drip-brew method, but requires a few extra steps.
You can make one cup of coffee at a time, or use a pot with a cone
shaped funnel attached to the lid to brew an entire pot.
make coffee by this method, grind the beans to the same consistency
that you would use for the drip method. If you will only be making
an individual cup, you may wish to grind the coffee slightly finer
to expose more of the surface area of the bean. This will ensure a
full-bodied cup. You will need to use a cone-shaped filter, of which
two basic varieties are available: one holds a paper or cloth filter,
the other has a permanent screen (usually gold plated). Place the
filter directly on top of the cup and scoop in the appropriate portion
Remember, if you are using an eight-ounce cup,
you will need to use 2 1/2 to 3 level tablespoons of ground coffee.
Slowly pour the water (195-200 °F) over the coffee. Wait for
all the water to flow through the ground coffee. Remove the filter
and the coffee is ready to enjoy.
Ed Arvidson has written for several coffee
industry periodicals and has appeared as a frequent seminar speaker
at industry trade shows on coffee preparation and business operations.
He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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