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For that cup of perfect filter coffee

Getting the physics and chemistry right for that perfect brew is important



Brown brew Puritans can take a walk, this is filter coffee

“How do you make a good cup of coffee with a filter?”

“It is very simple. First you have to get the right blend of coffee powder without chicory, it should not be ground fine. The particles should range from 1 mm size to soft powder. Stamp it in the upper compartment and put the plunger. No borewell water, use drinking water, and bring it to boiling point. Pour it in and your brew should be out by 12-15 minutes,” says K. Basavaraj, of Coffee Board, who takes people through the basics of brewing a good cup of coffee.

Now, are you ready for the ‘Godshot moment’ experienced by espresso drinkers?

Not yet. Though gourmands swear by single source beans, for the Indian brown coffee drinkers, the beans should be a blend considering the oraganoleptic characteristics (whatever that means).

The other experts of coffee board which organised the workshop listed out a few don’ts: roasted coffee beans should be ground fresh and used up within 48 hours. If you are storing it at home, store in an airtight container in a dark place (light spoils the coffee powder). “If your coffee packet puffs up, let out the air. The gas released by coffee powder spoils the coffee powder over a period of time,” said the retailing expert.

The espresso machine applies a pressure of 30 pounds per square inch, for 30 seconds on seven grammes of coffee powder for 30 ml of the brew, you cannot match it at home. So, stamp down the powder a bit in the upper vessel before you put the plunger and the hot water.

“Chicory is the bane of Indian coffee. Coffee powder costs over Rs. 200 a kg, while chicory costs Rs. 30. The solubility of coffee is 25 per cent while that of chicory is 75 per cent. Chicory is ground fine, while coffee powder is coarser. Even if commercially available coffee powders contain around 50 per chicory, all the factors ensure that the drink is nothing more than chicory that smells like coffee,” says Basavaraj.

Don’t we need to know about the various beans to get that perfect brew?

“Perhaps not,” says Basavaraj.

SERISH NANISETTI

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