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How to use a cafetière at home

By Lavazza Team 2/3 minutes

Also known as French press pot, generally made of glass or plastic, a cafetière is a heatproof jug with a strainer attached to the lid. It can be defined as a cylindrical pot equipped with a plunger and a built-in filter, letting your perfectly brewed coffee to be poured from its spout, leaving the grounds in the base of the container while extracting its intense flavour. Invented in France around the half of the XIX Century, it takes several names and depending on the country it is called French Press, cafetière, cafetière à piston, press pot, coffee press, or coffee plunger coffee.

Many coffee lovers all over the world choose the French press, since it grants an earthy and rich taste to your everyday cup of coffee. Furthermore, as we will see, the French press method is certainly one of the most convenient and least time-consuming ways to make a delicious cup of coffee. In addition, unlike other techniques, this one makes it simple to brew coffee for several people all at once!

How to use a cafetière step by step

STEP 1

As for the type of coffee to choose, if you buy ground coffee , the packs should actually say how finely grounded it is. The most suitable coffee to be used for the best cafetière coffee brewing is undoubtedly the medium/coarse grounds one, since overly fine coffee would slip through the strainer. Uniformity and consistency are, therefore, essential.

As many other processes taking place in the kitchen, the brewing of an amazing coffee with the method of French press substantially depends on one tool: a good burr grinder. Let’s see why this aspect is to be considered so important. Although a regular blade grinder works perfectly when it comes to grinding coffee beans for other solutions, such as drip machine, a French press needs rather big uniform grains of coffee, while smaller-sized ones would instead get through the filter, creating a sediment in your over-extracted and overly bitter cup of coffee. It is essential for all the coffee beans to be grounded to the same consistency, that is why the burr grinder is to be considered far superior when it comes to make this happen.


STEP 2

Below you can find the equipment required to prepare an exquisite coffee by using the cafetière:

  • A French press holding at least 32 ounces
  • Burr grinder
  • An electric kettle or a stovetop kettle
  • A long spoon
     

Here’s all you need to do in order to brew a perfect and delighting French press coffee:

  • Clean the coffee maker before and after each use. If you skip this passage your coffee might deliver some off flavours in the cup.
  • Warm up the Cafètiere: pour some hot water and discard to prepare for the brewing.
  • Boil your kettle safely and leave it to rest for one minute, while weighing the coffee grounds. Let the water cool down slightly, since you don’t want it to sear the coffee grounds as you pour it.
  • Add one tablespoon of coffee per cup to the bottom of your heatproof jug. How much coffee in a cafetière? The right measure is around 60 grams of ground coffee every 4 cups (1 Liter of water), make the dose based on how intense you want your coffee to taste like. You can weigh it by using digital scales or a measuring spoon.
  • Add the coffee in the French press. Pour half of the water (250ml) by wetting all the coffee grounds and allow pre-infusion to take place for 30 seconds; then, pour the other half of the water.
  • Let your coffee steep for four minutes so that it can produce a robust, intense brew. Whether you intend to tweak your French press, you should pay attention to its nuances, as slightly different roasts tend to get along better with somewhat slightly shorter or longer steeping times.
  • Plunge the press slowly and steadily and immediately press the plunger all the way to the bottom, holding it with one hand and the handle with the other. Don’t go for it too rapidly, as some grounds could eventually escape the strainer.
  • Once you’re done with it, enjoy your delicious French press coffee!


In order to make your cafetière coffee less bitter, a good tip could be not to leave the coffee in contact with water for a long time after the recommended time. Brewing them faster and reducing the amount of time you leave your cafetière after pouring the water in and stirring will definitely work!

These are the basic and easiest tips and tricks on how to make cafetiere coffee while getting into French press at home. However, just like many other things in cooking, you can experiment and improve at your leisure over time!


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