The Art of Making Coffee

How to Cook
 
Coffee is the seed of the fruit of an evergreen tree grown in tropical countries. Each fruit contains two seeds or berries. The fruit is picked, allowed to ferment, and the seeds removed from their pulpy covering. The seeds, which are also called coffee beans, are then roasted and sent to market. The flavor of the coffee bean is due to the variety of coffee tree, the maturity of the fruit when picked, and the time subjected to the roasting process. Mocha1 and Java are choice brands of coffee. Although originally grown in Arabia and Java, their names are not used to designate the localities in which they grow, but the variety of coffee. Much of our coffee now comes from Brazil.

Coffee is somewhat like tea in composition. It contains tannic acid, and therefore a tin coffeepot should never be used. The flavor can be extracted from coffee by boiling it or by pouring boiling water through it. Coffee should not boil longer than three minutes, as much tannic acid is extracted by long boiling.

Because coffee contains volatile substances, it should not be purchased ground, unless in small quantities, and it should then be kept in tightly covered jars or cans. When freshly roasted, coffee has the best flavor. In this condition, it is crisp and emits a strong aroma.

Boiled Coffee (proportion for one cupful)

1 heaping tablespoonful coarsely ground coffee
2 tablespoonfuls cold water
Bit of crushed egg-shell or a little egg white
1 cup boiling water
(1 egg-shell or 1/2 egg white is sufficient for 8 heaping tablespoonfuls
of ground coffee.)

Into a well-cleaned coffeepot, place the coffee, 1 tablespoonful of the cold water, and egg. Mix; then add the boiling water and boil for not more than three minutes. Remove from the fire; pour out about one half cupful of coffee, in order to rinse the grounds from the inside and from the spout of the coffeepot. Return the coffee to the pot; add the second tablespoonful of cold water. If the spout is not covered, a piece of paper may be inserted so that the aroma will be retained. Allow to stand in a warm place for about 5 minutes for the coffee to become clear.

Cold water may be used instead of boiling water in making coffee

Care of Coffeepot
The coffee should never be allowed to stand in the coffeepot, but should be turned out at once after using. If any clear coffee is left, it may be used for spice cakes, jellies, or other desserts. The coffeepot should be washed well, and scoured if necessary. The spout needs special care in cleaning.

Filtered Coffee

2/3 cupful finely ground coffee
5 cupfuls freshly boiled water

(For the following method of preparing coffee, a "drip coffeepot" is used. A drip coffeepot is provided with a perforated receptacle or a muslin bag in which the finely ground coffee is held. The boiled water is poured through the ground coffee.)

Heat the coffee by steaming it, placing a little boiling water in the bottom of the coffeepot and the ground coffee in the coffee bag or perforated cup. Remove the bag or cup and pour the water from the pot. Return the bag or cup to the coffeepot and slowly pour over it the freshly boiled water. If it is desired to make the coffee stronger, the beverage may be poured over the ground coffee a second time. Care should be taken, however, not to cool the coffee in so doing. Wash the coffee bag in clear cold water and dry in the air. Renew the bag occasionally. "Black" or "After Dinner Coffee" may be prepared in a drip coffeepot. Use 1 cupful of finely ground coffee to 5 cupfuls of freshly boiled water.

Filtered coffee may also be prepared in a coffee percolator. A percolator is so constructed that the water is heated in the pot and kept at boiling temperature while passing through the ground coffee. The method of preparing the beverage depends upon the construction of the percolator. Follow the directions that come with it.

Footnote
Mocha is a port in Arabia. Mocha coffee was so called because much of the coffee grown in Arabia was exported from Mocha.

How To Cook
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  Cooking Notes 2006