Gourmet Coffee At Home

by admin on July 29, 2010

Have you decided to give up your daily Starbucks fix as a way to reduce costs in response to our ever shrinking economy?  It’s true that coffee shop coffee is a nice splurge, but it can also cost a small fortune. An average coffee drink runs about $3.50, plus another dollar or two if you add a biscotti or muffin. If you go everyday, you are spending about $120 per month or over $1400 a year.

But once you’ve gone coffee shop it’s difficult to go back to plain old drip coffee. The trusty can of Folger’s just doesn’t hold the same appeal. But you don’t have to choose between a car payment and watery, bland coffee. You can make barista worthy coffee at home.

The key to great coffee is starting with freshly ground coffee beans. You will get the best tasting results by purchasing a grinder and grinding whole coffee beans just before using them, because the fragrant oils in the beans begin to dissipate within a few minutes of grinding. Coffee grinders can be found in the small appliance department of many stores and cost $35 – $50. If you don’t want to grind your own beans, you can purchase bulk beans and grind them at the store. Buy a week or two worth of coffee at a time to ensure the freshest taste.

If you typically order Café au Lait, you can easily make this in your own kitchen with a French press and freshly ground coffee. A French press is a simple set-up that makes rich, dark coffee in a glass container with a handle. The lid is fitted with a plunger attached to a strainer. Freshly ground coffee in dumped into the glass container and boiling water is poured in, allowing the ground coffee to circulate in the hot water. The lid goes on and the coffee brews. After 5 minutes, the plunger is pushed to the bottom of the glass container, trapping the loose grounds. Hot, rich, ground-free coffee can then be poured into your cup and topped with hot milk. French presses come in several sizes and can be purchased at most coffee shops. They cost $30 to $50.

If you like the stronger taste of espresso, you can easily do this at home. Italians brew their own espresso with a Moka, a small metal stovetop espresso maker. Mokas can be found at many coffee shops or stores like Cost Plus that sell foods from around the world. Cold water is pressed through finely ground dark roast coffee to produce espresso. Mokas also come in several different sizes and cost between $25 and $40.

Now that you can brew your own coffee at home, you can give up the coffee shop habit for good and still feel like you are treating yourself to a little indulgence. Enjoy!

Want more tips on saving your waistline along with your budget? Check out The Deceptive Diet for great results!

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