Camper Coffee

Camper Coffee

I used the same French Press pot for the last 17 years. I got it from Stacy – from Levittown, Long Island. Emerson ran stacked classes, so she was in a few of my undergrad New Media classes, as she pursued her grad degree.

We hung out often, and after graduation, she was cleaning out her apartment in the Fens. I scored that French Press and a battle ax of a Singer sewing machine.

Since moving into the trailer, I have struggled with making coffee. OK, I have a track record for struggling with making coffee for a while, I can only make it the way I like with a FP. Some how it turns nuclear when I am asked to set up a drip pot.

What a luxury a garbage disposal is: with a FP in the trailer, my main goal with coffee making is herding the grounds and not letting them go down the drain.

Some time over the summer, I broke the hand-me-down FP from Stacy. The replacement I ordered from Amazon arrived broken. At a cross-roads, (maybe someone was telling me something), I fiddled with ideas on how to capture the grounds. With my third FP, I tried a few techniques sandwiching them between coffee filters, more trouble than it was worth.

I didn’t want to take up counter space with a large coffee maker. As an Alton Brown disciple, I am adamant about multitaskers in the kitchen – also a great philosophy in camper living. What to do?

December of 2016, I was lucky enough to spend Christmas at Yellowstone. It was an amazing trip, and I highly recommend visiting the frozen caldera. You are locked in a bit with the food situation, though. That year, there was only one lodge open, they had a restaurant and a smaller quick-bite counter option. They technically didn’t allow food in, no food prep in the rooms, but I skirted that. I packed some instant items: soup, ramen, oatmeal, hot chocolate, and dehydrated camp meals; I purchased an electric kettle.

I dug out the kettle that had been packed away in the storage unit. Being hooked up to shore power, it is so much quicker than boiling water on the stove, and I can save some propane. That baby is a total multitasker (despite the fact that in reality it does one thing), as I have been able to boil water for soup, and washing dishes (when there was a water issue RE that expanding water thing discussed previously).

So… hot water for coffee: check. Now for managing the grounds: I really needed a filter for sanity sake. While the trailer came with a nice screen for the drain, that ish gets everywhere. I went in the Pour Over direction. It’s what those cool hipsters are doing these days, I guess. Apparently there’s an art to the temperature, and some people pay boatloads for a kettle to heat their artisanal water in just the right way, with a flourish of a spout that envelopes the H2O like swaddling a baby, or something.

I just want coffee in the morning.

It’s been a few weeks now with the pour over. While it takes time for the water to seep through, the clean-up is a breeze. I am still working on my ratios, and am pretty close; I did have a nuclear pot the other day. Also something that I do, that will make some people cringe, I make a full pot, and chill the rest. The next day I pop a cup into the microwave. (No clean up on those days.)

Yesterday, as I was shuffling a few items around in the truck, the box destined to the Goodwill shifted the wrong way, I broke that third French Press.

Here’s to happier mornings.

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