Saturday, July 23, 2016

Using a French Press to Make Coffee

As a young adult I "learned" to like coffee for the caffeine benefits. Then I began to really like the stuff. Then I had to stop drinking it and didn't touch it for 10 years or more. Why, you ask? Because I was having heart palpitations and was told caffeine could make them worse, so I quit cold turkey. I gave up caffeinated tea also.  

Well recently I began drinking coffee again and have found it's having no effect on my heart (those palpitations are few and far between now). I think after such a long time away from coffee, I appreciate the process of making it and drinking it more than ever before. I'm also a newbie to coffee shops and all the fancy drinks they sell. I'm the one in line asking "What's the difference between a macchiato and a cortado?"

My husband uses a drip coffee maker to prepare his coffee, but years ago he used to use this Boden French press. During my trip to Seattle in May, I saw that my friends use a French press too, and so I started using it to make coffee and found that I love the process. So when I returned home, I dug out our French press. I've always loved the look of one, and the method is quite simple and enjoyable

To make coffee in a French press, first add four scoops of ground coffee to the container. I've been buying ground coffee that is really meant for drip coffee makers, which means it's too finely ground for the French press. Once I get through all the coffee we have in our pantry (which is a bunch thanks to our local grocery's buy 2 get 3 free specials), I'm going to start buying more coarsely ground coffee for the French press. I am anxious to see what kind of difference it makes.

Heat the water (I use our electric kettle, which I love) and just before it comes to a full boil, fill the French press container with the hot water.

Let the mixture steep four minutes. I use a timer so it doesn't sit too long. I find that four minutes is the right amount of time for a rich cup of coffee without bitterness.

After the coffee has steeped, slowly push down on the plunger to press the grounds to the bottom of the container.

I like to use turbinado sugar to my coffee ... an idea I got from my friend in Seattle. I store it in a pretty glass container on the kitchen counter.

I also add half & half to my coffee. My husband prefers his black. I am definitely not that much of a die-hard coffee drinker to drink it black. I need the sweetness and the cream!

I store leftover brewed coffee in a jar in the fridge so I can enjoy iced coffee in the afternoon or the next morning. Sometimes I also use the leftovers to make coffee ice cubes. I really enjoy iced coffee in the summer! I can remember my parents drinking iced coffee when I was a kid and I thought it was so gross, now I love it! Add a little chocolate syrup and voila, you have a fancy iced mocha -- without the fancy price tag! 

So tell me, do you make coffee at home or buy it at a shop? What method do you use to make your coffee? Do you have a favorite coffee drink or brand? There's a locally roasted coffee that my husband and I think is the best. A local bakery uses it to make their fancy coffee drinks, which are to die for (but expensive!) -- a cafe mocha and a gluten-free almond horn and I'm in heaven.

Thanks for visiting My Little Bungalow. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on coffee!


  1. I have long been a proponent of the French press, or cafetiere. It makes great coffee, but it also means less clutter on my counter tops. Thanks for sharing your method. I also rarely have leftovers, but saving them in the fridge is such a great idea. Especially now that summer's heated up.


  2. My daughter bought me a French press for my birthday, because we keep being gifted some Ethiopian coffee beans (from a friend who frequently travels to Africa). I love my Keurig and even though it definitely costs more, it's worth it to me. I've tried the French press once and it was ok (I think my beans were ground too fine, also) but cleaning it was such a mess! How do you not end up with a sink full of grounds?!

  3. Hi Claudia, a French press is wonderful. I recently bought one only because I'm tired of buying expensive coffee makers that wear out and was pleasantly surprised with the flavor the press offered. I wish I converted to a French press years ago!! Glad to hear you're enjoying coffee again! - Jane


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