Australia is internationally renowned for its coffee culture, but the coronavirus lockdown has pressed pause on what is for many a daily ritual of visiting a cafe for a fresh brew.
Although some cafes are still offering takeaway and delivery, and doing the important job of serving healthcare and other frontline workers, many have sadly been forced to shut their doors.
But the current stay-at-home orders don’t mean that you have to give up your caffeine habit, or your taste for good coffee.
In fact, with some simple equipment, a fresh bag of beans from your local cafe or coffee roaster, and a little bit of knowledge, it’s possible to continue to enjoy great-tasting coffee at home.
What you need
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If you don’t already have some coffee-making equipment at home, you can order everything you need online.
An easy and inexpensive place to start is by buying a coffee plunger, or a stovetop espresso maker.
“A plunger is a great way to start. It’s really easy,” says Joe Molloy, director of Melbourne-based Rumble Coffee Roasters.
“You can get a decent-sized plunger so you can make coffee for the whole house.”
AeroPress is another popular method among coffee fanatics.
To get the best out of your coffee, you’ll also want to buy a coffee grinder, Mr Molloy says.
Support your local cafe or coffee roaster
You can’t beat the smell of freshly roasted coffee, so it’s wise to skip the supermarket stuff if you can, and support your local cafe or coffee roaster by ordering a bag of beans.
“If you buy international coffee from the supermarket that been roasted in Italy or whatever it is going to be roasted months beforehand,” Mr Molloy says.
No matter what the packaging says, it is not going to taste as good as coffee that was roasted last week from a local roaster down the road.’’
Freshly ground beans are best
Skip this step at your own peril.
“The key thing that people always get it wrong is you need to grind it yourself at home right before you brew it,” Mr Molloy says.
That’s the single best thing you can do to make better coffee.’’
Even if you buy a “cheap, crappy grinder” you will still end up with “much better coffee” than if using pre-ground beans, Mr Molloy says.
Brewing the perfect coffee is a bit of a science, and to get it right you need to follow a ‘recipe’.
To help non-baristas get the most out of their coffee at home, the team at Rumble put together a series of free ‘brew guides’.
These easy-to-follow recipes explain exactly how to make the perfect cup of coffee at home using different types of equipment.
How to make the perfect stovetop coffee
Stovetop espresso maker
Freshly ground coffee
Hot filtered water
Set up: Grab the filter from the base of the stovetop and place the funnel inside.
Grind: Add fresh, fine to medium ground (think caster sugar) coffee to the stovetop filter. (Use 7.5 grams of coffee per 100ml of water – for one cup, try 15 grams for 200ml).
Tap the filter holder to level out the ground coffee and remove any air pockets.
Brew: Use hot filtered water for a shorter brew time.
Pour the hot water into the base of the stovetop.
Insert the filter with the ground coffee back into the stovetop and screw on the top piece, making sure it’s tight.
Place on your hotplate and turn it on.
Listen to the brew, when you hear it bubbling/brewing turn the element off.
Take the stovetop off the element and leave for a minute or so to finish brewing.
Pour: Once you hear the brewing stop, pick up the stovetop, pour into your vessel and enjoy.
Stovetop can be quite strong, so add more water if needed.