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Top 10 Tips for Making Great Cowboy Coffee

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Ten tips for how to make coffee without a coffee maker

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Book: Making Great Cowboy Coffee

Making Great Cowboy Coffee
by Jack McCoy

A guide to brewing cowboy coffee at home and on the campfire

The downside of living in the information age is that we have far too much information to
and keep the important stuff between our ears for when we need it.
To help simplify your life just a little, here is a list of the top ten things to remember
about making cowboy coffee. They are in no particular order.

  1. Steep your coffee in water that’s between 195 and 205 degrees F. And whatever
    you do, don’t use boiling water.
  2. If you buy ground coffee, buy only enough for 1 or maybe 2 weeks. If you buy
    whole bean coffee, buy only enough for 1 month. You can fudge a little when
    buying coffee packed in a stay fresh bag. As long as the coffee was recently
    roasted and you don’t open the bag, it will remain reasonably fresh for months.
  3. Once you’ve opened a bag of coffee, keep the coffee fresh by closing the bag
    tightly with a rubber band and storing in a ceramic or metal container with a tight
    fitting lid. Keep the container away from heat.
  4. Grind your coffee at home for maximum flavor. And do so as close to brewing
    time as possible.
  5. Always keep a fine mesh wire strainer at hand. A good strainer is invaluable and
    will deal with any and all problems you may have with floating coffee grounds.
  6. Use a medium to fine coffee grind for fullness of flavor and ease of sinking the
  7. Use good drinking water. If your tap water tastes bad, so will your coffee.
  8. Steep your coffee for 3 minutes, maybe a little less for a fine grind.
  9. Before serving, gently stir the floating coffee and foam in your pot and wait 30 to
    60 seconds before pouring. This will sink most if not all of the floaters.
  10. Don’t drink the last sip in the cup or the last cup in the pot. That’s where the
    grounds and fine sediment settle.