Until recently, niether the Gent or myself have been huge coffee drinkers.  We usually reserved it for our Power Homework Sessions at Starbucks, or those early morning work days where we are groggier than usual.  On both these occasions we would often make a face and slurp it down, with a generous amount of cream and sugar to mask the unpleasing taste of bitter coffee.  Since we used to drink coffee so sparingly, we never brewed it at home even though we knew we could probably make better.  Reasons for this include the fact that we did not own coffee beans, nor a coffee maker.

But that all changed once this little puppy walked into our lives.  We have learned the best way to brew coffee and have it not taste bitter in the least.  Just nutty, coffee goodness.  And the secret is more surprising than you think!

The only three things to remember are a French press, Fair Trade or locally roasted coffee, and a pinch of salt.  Even if you only have two out of the three essentials, you’re well on your way to home-brewed coffee utopia.

  1. Boil your water.  While the water is boiling fill your press with the appropriate amount of coarse ground coffee for its size.  Add a pinch of salt.  A little more than you think you need, but not so much that you’ll be drinking what tastes like sea water.
  2. Pour the boiling water over top of the grounds and salt making sure that the water saturates every bit of the coffee grounds and gets the salt moving enough to dissolve.
  3. Let the coffee sit for one minute.  Don’t touch it.  Just let it sit.
  4. Stir the coffee grounds.  Make sure that you pick up all the bits that might have stuck to the bottom and watch that delicious coffee foam rise to the surface.
  5. Let the coffee sit for three more minutes. Again, touche pas.
  6. Place the lid and plunger on the top of the carafe, and plunge. Plunge the coffee down slowly so that it can push out all of the flavour from the beans.
The salt may be a bit of a weird addition, but it cuts out the bitter taste that develops in coffee the longer it sits.  This coffee will taste so incredibly incredible that you can really spoil yourself with a slice of homemade coffee cake on the side.
Even if you don’t have a french press, the addition of salt to your coffee maker’s grounds will keep the coffee tasting phenomenal.  I can’t say we’ve tried using this technique with Maxwell House coffee, since we usually purchase locally roasted and fair trade beans from a roastery near my parent’s farm, but please let us know if you do!  We’d love to hear back from you.
So readers, how do you make your morning cup-of-joe?
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