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Dec 16, 2007 08:06 AM

How to make coffee without coffeepot or press?

My parents are coming for Christmas morning brunch and they drink coffee. My husband and I don't drink coffee, so we don't have a coffeemaker nor do we want to buy one. Is there any way to make coffee without a coffeepot or press? Looking around online, I've found that there are coffeebags, much like teabags, that may work. Has anyone had any luck with these? Any other suggestions? Thanks in advance!

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  1. we have a chemex for our coffee, which is simple and tastes great- it's basically an hourglass-shaped glass - which you could probably reproduce in your own kitchen - you basically put coffee in the filter, pour hot water directly onto the coffee, and the coffee drips into the glass. the only trick would be finding something to hold the coffee filter in place. i've seen funnels sold that basically do the same thing - this may even be easier because you could probably just place them in a cup

    1. you can boil it in a saucepan and then use a tea strainer. You will need to play with boiling times and how much coffee to water ratio but it can be done. I personally do not like those coffee bags.

      1 Reply
      1. re: smartie

        Yes, you can do it like this...I did it for a while but be sure you don't just boil it away...what I used to do was measure 2 TBS. of freshly ground coffee into 8 ounces of fresh cold water in small saucepan...bring it just to a boil then take it off the heat, covered, and let it sit for 5 minutes...then strain into a cup. I'm sort of with the crowd that advises you to buy a small coffee maker...I think you can even get a no-name brand at drug store for $10.

      2. The original comment has been removed
        1. Is your intention to purchase coffee, or use coffee that you already have in your pantry?

          If you have to purchase, there are a few choices that already come in filter packs. You could simply make it like a pot of tea and immerse the filter pack in hot water,,,not boiling water, Steep as you would your tea bag, or brew gently on low heat. You could also consider an International flavored instant,,,,I am sure you parents could suffer through that.
          Let me say with all the gadgets out there to make coffee, the old percolator or vacuum systems were the best in my humble opinion. The older coffee shops in Chinatown, NYC still use them and for .60 cents, you get a fantastic cup of coffee. Try to find an old Vacuum system for the stove on ebay and it could set you back over $100.

          If you have loose grinds now at home, consider making coffee just like they used to in the old days on the prairie.... add the coffee grinds to a hot pot of water and brew on low flame for a few minutes and simply pour through a strainer. Do so without your parents knowledge and I wager they say it's the best coffee they ever had. In fact, I 'll bet your fathers says it just like how coffee used to taste.

          1. I like my coffee, but my apartment is so small, there's not room for a coffeemaker. I went to the dollar store where they have melitta style funnels, and packages of paper filters for a dollar each. I use an old coffee pot, directly on the stove on VERY low heat, but I've also had the funnel and filter directly over a mug. Of course, I measure out the ground coffee, and pour water straight from the kettle, boiling, over the grounds. This is the way the original system was introduced into North America. I remember my dad making his coffee this way in the late 60's.
            As well, it the funnel and filter do not take up large amounts of space. in the kitchen.


            2 Replies
            1. re: violabratsche

              I was going to suggest a melitta filter and holder, but you can just buy a package of filters (go with the 4-cup size conical ones), place a filter in an ordinary funnel balanced over a cup or carafe (or teapot). Measure 1 or 2 tbsp. per cup of water (depending on how strong your parents like their coffee). Pour boiling water over the grounds and let it drip through. Voila - coffee with no fancy equipment.

              Years ago when we travelled to China I packed a bunch of filters, a bag of ground coffee and a single-cup Melitta holder for the trip. Worked perfectly and definitely beat the horrid instant we would otherwise have had to drink.

              1. re: violabratsche

                For someone who doesn't have experience with coffee, the Melitta holder and filters is the simplest and least expensive option. I use a fine grind (Italian Espresso from Trader joes), 2 'coffee scoops' per 12oz mug.

                A less expensive option is to steep the coffee in a sauce pan (2-4 minutes), and then strain it through a fine strainer - this is, in effect, what the French press does. But it is tricker to match the coffee grind with the strainer mesh. If the mesh is too fine, it takes for ever to drain, if to coarse, you get too much sediment in the cup.

                The paper filters can be used for other cooking needs - any time you need to filter out fine sediment.