When camping, I'm sure that there's one thing many adults would love, especially during tiring days or early mornings. And that's coffee! It may seem difficult to brew your coffee while you're out in camping sites, or even impossible.
But did you know that there are brewing devices that will have you enjoy a cup of coffee without hassle and tasting just like it does back at home? That's where a percolator comes to the rescue. But what is it and how do you brew a cup of coffee with it?
Read on as I show you how to use a percolator for your next cup of coffee while you travel!
What Is A Percolator?
You may have learned about the various types of ways to make coffee, but have you ever heard of the percolator? This is a pot used when brewing coffee. It works by cycling the brew through the grounds by using its gravity until the coffee reaches the preferred strength.
They were very popular before the early 1970s and automatic drip coffeemakers were made. But it is still a great device to use, as the percolation can remove the volatile compounds found in coffee beans, which results in pleasant aroma as you brew.
It also gives a hot and more robust coffee as compared to other types of coffeemakers while camping, as long as it is done right.
There haven't been a lot of improvements from the percolator other than developing the filter rings to easily put a proper amount of ground coffee and allow it to seal. This is so that you won't need to clean the wet coffee grounds from the percolator.
How to Use a Percolator
You're now familiar with the percolator, but the question is: How can you use one?
First, prepare what you need:
- Fresh ground coffee
- Cream, milk, or other sweeteners
Here are the steps to follow:
1. Arrange the Firewood
Gather all the wood needed to create the campfire and bundle it together, using the teepee mode. Scatter tinder (dry grass or bark) in the center of the base, leaving a small space for oxygen to flow through it.
2. Lighting the Fire
Ignite the tinder and create the fire, blowing the flame gently until the large sticks start to burn. Allow the wood to burn until it becomes glowing coals, so it will be easy to brew with the percolator.
3. Prepare the Percolator
Fill it with water, pouring about eight ounces of water for every cup of coffee you want. For those brewing a full pot, fill it until you are just right below the upper portion where you put the filter baskets.
Newer models will usually have an indicator line. Avoid overfilling or it may start leaking or bursting.
4. Add the Coffee
Scoop one tablespoon of fresh ground coffee per cup on the filter or basket. If you want it to taste milder, use a bit less than that. I like my consistency a coarse grind, with bigger and rougher coffee pieces making it less likely for acids to seep out.
Finely ground coffee works as well, though you need to check it out carefully. Do NOT use instant coffee.
5. Put the Basket on the Percolator
Insert the basket on the percolator, ensuring that it fits and is in place. Put the lid of the percolator, latching it to make sure that nothing will come loose. This will prevent any accidents or spills that may happen.
6. Brewing Coffee
Put the percolator over the fire, which should be burning low. Put it directly in the center, if possible. Let the water heat up, absorbing the heat.
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You can see that as the temperature begins to rise, water will be pulled up the center tube, letting it filter in the lower chamber of the percolator. The water is extracting the natural essence of the ground coffee.
Do NOT let the water come to a boil. It will take about five to ten minutes to let it finish. Once it's done, remove it from the percolator, let it cool, and serve. Remember to stay safe and use tongs or heat-resistant gloves when handling the hot percolator.
Tips On Improving Your Cup of Coffee While Camping
Now that you know how to use a percolator, what are other ways to perk up your coffee and make it taste even better? Here are some tips you may want to follow while brewing your coffee with this handy device:
- Be sure to clean your percolator before and after camping. After all, you wouldn't want to be tasting rust-flavored coffee due to lack of maintenance. Clean it with hot water and dishwashing liquid to assure that your percolator is ready to use later on.
- Use freshly ground coffee to bring more flavor into your morning. I know how hard it can be to use fresh coffee beans when out far away, which is why I carry my ground coffee in a vacuum container to avoid any air from getting into it or spoiling the flavor.
- Avoid scalding yourself by removing the lid of the percolator and removing the filter stem from the pot to prevent the steam from dripping into your coffee.
- To perfect the coffee brewing in your percolator, keep an eye on its translucent dome to see the color of your coffee. Too pale means less flavor, while too dark will mean too bitter. Avoid letting it "percolate" too long. As long as you continue to keep an eye on it, your coffee will be fine.
- Do not pour the coffee too deeply to avoid the grounds on the bottom from getting into your mug. You can add more water if it is too strong, or repeat the process and add more ground coffee if it is too bitter. Add your desired sweeteners (I bring cream and sugar packets to avoid the hassle) and enjoy!
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When it comes to enjoying a cup of coffee out in the woods, you'll be able to achieve that and get the perfectly brewed coffee with the help of a percolator. Once you know how to use it, you'll have an even better time camping, with this handy device always in your pack while you go.
I hope that this article on how to use a percolator shows you how to make the best cup of coffee your way. So what are you waiting for? If you want to make sure you have a nice hot cup of coffee while you camp, then invest in a percolator and learn how to use it now.
If you have any questions or would like to share your tips and experiences on how to use a percolator, then comment down below. I would one to hear what you have to think.