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First Time Grinder


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8 replies to this topic

#1 birder53

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Posted 28 November 2003 - 03:56 PM

I purchased a Bosch grinder at Trader Joe's. I've never done this before :shock: (ground coffee at home, that is)and expected the instructions that came with the grinder to explain it all to me. The only time I've ground my own coffee is using the grinders at the store where you just pick the grind you want and voila! Well, how do you know how much to grind your coffee when using a grinder with no settings? How many beans do you grind to make 8 cups of drip coffee? Did I make a bad purchase here or do I just have to learn how to use this by trial and error? I really don't want to wait very long for my morning coffee while I fiddle with my new toy. Does anyone else have one of these and can you give me some tips here?
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#2 Holly Moore

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Posted 28 November 2003 - 05:32 PM

I purchased a Bosch grinder at Trader Joe's.  ...  Did I make a bad purchase here or do I just have to learn how to use this by trial and error?  I really don't want to wait very long for my morning coffee while I fiddle with my new toy.

I'm not familiar with that particular grinder. Do you know whether it uses blades to chop of the coffee, or a mill to grind the coffee. I have never seen a mill with no adjusment dials so I'm thinking you may have a chopper.

If it is a chopper, see if Trader Joe will give you a refund. The goal in milling coffee is to achieve a consistent particle size. A chopper is anything but consistent. Like Goldilocks, you will find some of the coffee ground to fine (will be over extracted), some will be ground to coarse (underextracted) and some will be just right.

If it is a mill, you should be able to set the distance between the top and bottom mill, though the dial may read something like regular, fine, very fine.

For a drip coffee maker use a medium grind. Not too fine or you will over extract the coffee. The finer settings are for espresso and such.

You probably got a coffee measure with the grinder, or you can pick one up. You want to use one coffee measure per 6 oz cup and probably brew at least 3-4 cups.

And yeah, with any kind of mill, you're in for some trial and error.
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#3 vengroff

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Posted 28 November 2003 - 05:50 PM

If it has no settings, just a button to push to turn it in, it is most likely a blade grinder. This is the lesser quality type as per Holly's post. If it is cylidrical, about eight inches high and three inches in diameter, and has a removable top that covers a chamber with a metal propeller-looking thing, then it is the blade type.

As for the amount of coffee, about 7g per cup gives me good results in a vacuum press. It may vary up or down in other types of machines.
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#4 Holly Moore

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Posted 28 November 2003 - 06:04 PM

Further on mill vx. choper. The professional coffee suppliers all use mills like Ditting. I'm of the opinion it is better to have them grind the coffee and keep it at home in the freezer than to buy beans and use a chopper to grind them.
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#5 Kenk

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Posted 29 November 2003 - 08:42 PM

Your grinder does sound like a blade grinder. When I use one I measure the beans like I measure the grounds to make the coffee. ie. 1 tablespoon of coffee beans per cup of coffee.

You can always remeasure the coffee before putting it in you coffee maker.

One of the disadvantages of the blade grinder is that some really fine particles will be generated and will slip through your filter. I like Turkish coffee, this doesn't bug me.

The biggest advantage of the blade grinder is they cost $15 - $35, burr grinders cost $35-$600

My personal coffee "master" recomends storing coffee in a sealed container rather than placing it in the freezer. I put my coffee in mason type jars with rubber seals and a flip top.

Using any grinder takes a bit of experimentation to acheive the desired grind. Go For it.

#6 phaelon56

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Posted 01 December 2003 - 08:02 AM

Further on mill vx. choper. The professional coffee suppliers all use mills like Ditting. I'm of the opinion it is better to have them grind the coffee and keep it at home in the freezer than to buy beans and use a chopper to grind them.

I'll have to respectfully disagree with Holly on this one. Once the vacuum sealed container of ground coffee is opened, deterioration is rapid. Even freezing is not really a salvation. I've made Melitta style and auto drip style coffee for years using cheap blade grinders and have been consistently pleased with the results. I did but a cheap burr style (i.e. $30- $40) grinder ocne and it was so horrible I returned it immediately. It created lots of powder along with the small particles. Yes, a blade style grinder does chop rather than grind but if one is not making press pot style coffee or using a gold mesh filter, IMHO it's still far better than pre-ground coffee, even that which has been stored in an airtight jar or frozen.

I tried drip coffee with my Solis Meastro and yes, it was a trifle better than what I made with the blade grinder but the real difference became evident only with espresso (to me).

#7 birder53

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Posted 01 December 2003 - 11:12 AM

Yes, a blade style grinder does chop rather than grind but if one is not making press pot style coffee or using a gold mesh filter

Okay, that last suggestion/comment seals the fate of my grinder - back it goes! I just bought a Cuisinart drip coffee machine without the built in grinder. It uses the gold mesh filter, which I like very much for convenience. I'll do a bit more research on grinders that hopefully are less challenging to use and keep in mind that my filter will not prevent small grinds from ending up in the pot.

Thank you all for your help. :smile:
KathyM

#8 phaelon56

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Posted 01 December 2003 - 12:08 PM

If you don't plan to get into making espresso.... the retro style Kitchenaid burr grinder that's $129 is a good bet. It looks cool and it's very solidly built. If espreso making is in your future, those who've been trying out the Kitchenaid say that it doesn't grind quite finely enough. A Solis Maestro at about $100 or the new Maestro Plus at about $150 are a better bet. In the very long haul, one might expect durability of the Kitchaid to be better based on surface appearances. if it were my monery to invest and I planned on serious espresso making in the future.... I'd shop around for a deal on a gently used Rancilio Rockey or perhaps a Cunill Tranquillo or an Anfim. One of those three should be available in the $175 - $200 range if you search for awhile.

#9 jsolomon

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Posted 01 December 2003 - 07:37 PM

If it has no settings, just a button to push to turn it in, it is most likely a blade grinder. This is the lesser quality type as per Holly's post. If it is cylidrical, about eight inches high and three inches in diameter, and has a removable top that covers a chamber with a metal propeller-looking thing, then it is the blade type.

As for the amount of coffee, about 7g per cup gives me good results in a vacuum press. It may vary up or down in other types of machines.

Whoa... I use 18 grams per 12 ounce cup. No wonder it peels my eyelids back like it does...

Tastes good, though :wub:
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