Wednesday, March 26, 2014

#StormCoffee: The Aeropress

As I sit at my impromptu kitchen island breakfast nook six days post spring, the winterpocolypse of Juanabe rages outside my window. In case you are a) not following me on twitter (why aren't you?) or b) reading from somewhere not Atlantic Canada, Nova Scotia is being hit with a colossal spring Blizzard complete with hurricane force winds and between 30-40cm of snow.

Today is a Storm Day: laundry is done, #stormchips are purchased (and #stormbeer) along with some power outage supplies (Sent hubby to buy ready to eat foods... he bought apples and cereal...).
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Storm Day means everything is special, you just have to tag "storm" in front and voila! Instant excuse for a special moment.

For example: #stormcoffee.

A few weeks ago our lovely friends who are currently living in Exeter, sent us an Aeropress espresso/coffee maker as a housewarming gift. I will admit, I am in love.

(if the pictures look sunny, it's because I took them a few weeks ago...)

It would appear that we are a bit behind the Aeropress bandwagon. A quick search on the internet and you see a whole host of hipster coffee fans drooling over this espresso making doodad. When it comes to coffee, I do want it to be tasty, but if it's too gadget-y than forget it.

Thankfully, the aeropress is easy peasy, low tech and low cleaning maintenance.

What is it:
A cylinder where you have your grinds, pour the almost boiling water (to the handy dandy measuring lines), slowly press the water through the filter and... that's it! You have your espresso.

(Pour the grinds with the handy little funnel deal-y to minimize grind spillage)
Why I like it:
It's a low tech ridiculously easy to use way to make espresso.
It is beyond easy to clean: afterwards you remove the filter and push out the puck of grinds into the compost and rinse out the components. Done.
It involves minimal energy (but then, so does a French press)
The resulting espresso and coffee is much much smoother than our French press.
(Pour the water up to 2 for a double espresso)

(Stir for 10 seconds- yes exactly 10)
Some drawbacks:
It comes with paper filters. Now, there are stainless steel filter options, however from my stainless steel coffee mug research days I am aware that steel products are MUCH more energy intensive and environment damaging than paper. Honestly I'm not sure how many times I'd have to use the aeropress in order to balance the damage done by the mining of the stainless steel vs paper. Also, you can reuse the paper filters several times... which we do.
(SLOWLY plunge for 20 seconds. Yes exactly 20)

Making two coffees in the morning does take more organizational skills since you have to rinse out and pop out the grinds puck after each. That said, no waiting 4 minutes while the water and coffee grinds set like in the French press...
The entire set up is made of plastic (our French press is glass and stainless steel).
mmmm espresso!

(The cute little "puck" at the end!)

Today was a special two #stormcoffee complete with melted dark chocolate icecream syrup. Yum!

6 comments:

  1. we registered for something similar. will have to let you know how i like it!

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  2. Here on PEI we are also being treated to "White Juan: the Sequel" . Were there any sun it would now be over the yardarm so almost time for Stormwine. And maybe some stormpopcorn.

    Who cancelled spring?

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  3. that looks very interesting. i exclusively drink lattes - is there a way to fluff milk without an reg espresso machine? my mom drinks coffee and the maker takes #2 size filters - i have #4 reusables which i now use for straining yogurt. I saw a few months ago the idea of making muslin filters which i intend to do when our paper stock runs out. that may be an option for you, but honestly if you really like the machine, the steel may be the best option in the long run. I have 3 steel baskets for my krups. 1 that came with the current thrifted machine, 1 from the first and only new machine i ever bought - sometime in the early 90s, and 1 from the last thrifted machine. the steel is recyclable and will last virtually forever and just needs an easy rinse. the fabric will disintegrate over time, & probably can be composted, but i think the daily rinsing would use alot more water over time. it occurs to me though that you could make several and then dump the grinds and set aside to dry and then shake out the remaining grinds then rinse? keep us posted on what you do - it might be a good coffee device for camping. Also stay warm. ;-)

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  4. Your storm day sounded fun! I was here with Thing 1 & Thing 2 and we watched "Frozen" because - of course! :D

    I didn't eat a single #stormchip. *coughs* of the potato variety *coughs*

    The AeroPress looks fun! We have super simple French press and we love it! Yay! #SormCoffee is the best!

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  5. I like our stovetop Bialetti better than our French press for coffee and it still requires no filter :) That being said, Dan & I have reduced our coffee intake so much - with that and chocolate having such a huge carbon footprint (no matter how sustainably grown and fair trade, it still travels a lot of miles), it's nice to consider it, like meat, more of a treat than a staple.

    Cheers to your hubby on cereal and apples - that sounds like me, hahahah :)

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  6. Thanks for the coffee tip! I have never heard of the Aeropress before - I shall look into it! Looks very promising.
    BTW: Misha - I "fluff" my milk with an old 2-cup french press - first you warm the milk in the beaker in the microwave - or on the stove - suit yourself, then place back in the bodum/french press structure, insert the press and start pumping up and down - within 30 seconds or less you have frothy, fantastic milk for lattes or cappucinos!

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