There are dozens of articles on demand for “alternative coffee” titled “Five Alternative Ways to Make Coffee.” The most commonly mentioned are Chemex, Hario (or “funnel”), siphon and aeropress. In fact, this is the same way, immersion is the complete immersion of ground coffee in water, and only the devices for preparation differ. But even the choice of a device is not at all the main thing, but the main thing is the idea.
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Alternative coffee philosophy
The fashion for an alternative came to Russia with the slow life trend and the concept of ethical and transparent business, support of a local manufacturer. There are no unimportant details here. Grains – only the best, specialty – no more than 15% of the total harvest. Necessarily from one farm: the height of growth, climatic features, soil type, fertilizers are important. Now they even begin to grow grain according to the given characteristics “to order” – this is called soursing.
The next stage is roasting. Alternatively, coffee beans are roasted directly in coffee shops and used only fresh. In the instructions, you can find recommendations to use “medium” roast beans, but the ideologists of alternative coffee call the division into three saturation roast rough and outdated. They themselves count by “crack”: after the grain has clicked for the first time – it’s time to shoot, you can only hold it a little. This method also works to reveal the natural flavor of the grain.
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The degree of grind is also important: a professional electric coffee grinder with adjustment will come in handy, but a manual coffee mill will also work. The main thing is uniformity, and the size of the fraction varies from medium-fine, like granulated sugar, to medium-coarse, like table salt from grandmother’s cupboard.
Coffee is weighed to the nearest gram, and water is boiled to a strictly defined temperature: to the “white keys”. There is a legend about how one young man was disqualified from a barista competition: he used melted ice as water, and this changed the taste of coffee so much that he was accused of changing the beans.
How to prepare an alternative at home?
There are a dozen alternatives for brewing, some even include geyser coffee makers on their list. The general point is that coffee extraction does not take place under pressure, as in an espresso machine, but due to prolonged contact with water, in addition, it is believed that these techniques allow you to better oxygenate the coffee and help to reveal the natural aroma of the beans. Manual brewing gives you better control over the five main factors that influence the taste of a beverage:
- strait speed.
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Hario (“funnel” or “purover”)
Just as it was with the copier, the name of the pioneering brand gave the device its name. The funnel can be made of ceramic, glass or plastic – each material has its own advantages and disadvantages.
The technique of making coffee is a lot like cooking in a Kemex:
- Clip the funnel to a cup or jug.
- Insert a paper filter.
- Place 20 g medium-fine coffee in the filter.
- Heat 340 ml of water, not boiling – the required temperature is 92-95 ° C.
- Pour water into the coffee in a thin, even stream in a spiral from the edges to the center. The whole process will take 3-5 minutes.
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There are swirling grooves on the walls of the Hario funnel – they separate the paper filter from the walls, and the coffee becomes more oxygenated during the preparation process. Pay attention to the direction in which the grooves are twisted: pour water in the same direction.
The less popular funnel works in a similar way. Clover. The difference is that the grooves are straight inside, and the finished drink does not spill into the cup as it is prepared, but first accumulates in the lower reservoir of the funnel.
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Many baristas use a gas burner instead of the supplied alcohol burner: a gas burner is easier to regulate the flame. In addition, some people use heated water to speed up the process, but we recommend using cold water – this also affects the taste of the drink. By the way, in half of the recipes, coffee is poured into the water already boiling in the upper flask. Try both – can you tell the difference?
Cold bru is often found among alternative methods of making coffee. But in fact, it needs to be mentioned separately. Cold brew can be cooked in an air press and in a French press, even in a mug or thermos: the essence of this method is not heating, but infusion.
- Just pour 150 g of coffee per liter of water into the selected container.
- Insist 8-12 hours.
- After – filter the finished drink.
From well-known brands, you can buy machines for the industrial preparation of cold brus. The price for them varies from 6 to 60 thousand rubles. This coffee is very concentrated and is well suited as a base for coffee cocktails.
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In secret: the main axiom of coffee culture is “there are no axioms”. Try, experiment and open up new horizons.
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