How to Grind Coffee for a Percolator

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Grind coffee appropriately to make a good cup of percolator coffee.
Image Credit: Chonlatee Sangsawang/iStock/GettyImages

With so many different types of coffee makers out there, you may be wondering how to grind coffee for a percolator. Coffee has been a cultural obsession for ages, long before there was a Starbucks on every corner. For years, people worldwide have been searching for the perfect cup of coffee, either from their favorite cafe or their own kitchen. You can grind coffee in several ways, but the one that people use most often is a coffee grinder, which is a tool specifically designed for coffee grounds.

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To use a coffee grinder, start by selecting your favorite whole roasted coffee beans – the fresher, the better. Carefully read the grinder's instructions to ensure you don't overfill it. Then, push the button to grind the coffee. Different coffee machines will require a different coarseness of coffee grounds. For example, some automatic coffee makers require finely ground coffee since the filters are very fine.

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How to Make Percolator Coffee

For the perfect cup of coffee, you'll need the perfect level of coarseness for your coffee beans. Percolators are machines that brew coffee using boiling water. As the water is heated and begins to boil, the steam will rise and drip through the coffee filter on top, brewing a strong cup of coffee. Generally, using a percolator will result in much stronger coffee than other methods.

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To get the best percolator coffee grind, use a coffee grinder on a coarse setting. You'll want larger grounds, as the coffee will essentially double brew in a percolator. If you accidentally grind your coffee beans too finely, you risk getting grounds in your coffee, which no one wants, especially first thing in the morning. A general guideline is to ensure that your ground coffee is coarser than table salt. It's best if you get the grounds to the coarseness of natural sea salt or even more coarse than that.

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History of the Percolator

Imagine a world where your coffee has grounds in it no matter what. That's what the first iterations of the coffee machine would produce. Before the invention of the percolator, the method used was called decoction, which essentially means that the coffee is boiled in water to extract the flavor. This early method of coffee making resulted in coarse, gritty coffee that required further straining.

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Coffee historians tell us that in 1889, Hanson Goodrich of Illinois was the first to take out a patent on a percolator-designed coffee machine. In Goodrich's words, this invention was said to keep the coffee free of all grounds and impurities, and he was right. This method keeps the grounds out of the coffee by holding them above the water in a basket. Though this early invention led the way for other coffee makers, it was said to produce coffee that was bitter and often metallic-tasting, as it was easy to overbrew.

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Health Benefits of Coffee

There are more benefits of coffee than just waking you up in the morning and being a tasty beverage. The caffeine commonly associated with the energy you feel after drinking coffee also has other benefits. Caffeine is a stimulant proven to increase energy and decrease exhaustion by altering levels of certain neurotransmitters in your brain. Drinking coffee is also believed to lower the risk of heart disease in women and lower the risk of a stroke.

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There are even more benefits. Coffee is associated with a lower risk of Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease, and in some studies, it has even been shown to slow the progression of Parkinson's. Studies have shown that coffee intake is linked to a lower risk of dementia and cognitive decline with age. It's up for debate as to how much coffee is required for these benefits to take effect.

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