With organic, fair trade coffee beans running nearly $10 a pound at my local natural food stores, I expect my morning joe to deliver a total sensory “mmmm” day after day. When that doesn’t happen, I walk backwards through the coffee making process to find the weak link. Here’s how:
Clean the machine
First, take a look at your coffeemaker. Residue from past pots can make coffee taste bitter and even rancid. Hard water buildup can slow down your machine and cause damage. Follow these seven steps to clean your coffeemaker without toxins.
Fill a large sink or tub with warm water. Pour in a ½-cup baking soda and stir to dissolve.
Soak all removable parts of your coffee maker along with the carafe and re-usable filter for three hours or overnight.
Wash and dry as usual
Pour distilled white vinegar into the water reservoir to its maximum capacity.
Replace the carafe and run the vinegar through the machine.
Repeat steps 5 and 6.
Rinse by filling the reservoir with clean water and run through the machine twice.
Keep your grind kind
Grinding your beans too finely also can lead to bitter coffee. Keep in mind that the finer the grind the faster the brew. So espresso gets the finest grind while a drip coffee machine does better with more coarsely ground beans.
Check your source
Old beans may also be the culprit of your not-so-stellar home brew. It’s a good idea to buy as freshly roasted as possible. Purchase smaller amounts at a time and store in a tightly sealed container at room temperature to ensure you’re always drinking fresh coffee.
These days, even coffee can seem like a splurge. Remember these tips to protect your investment and wake up to the perfect cup of coffee every morning.