Waste or mistakes never happen in a farm kitchen.....only future animal or plant food.

July 15, 2011

Percolated Coffee...sort of

I was "in town" the other day and scored this oldie but goodie at the local flea market.  It was in excellent condition, was priced right and had all the parts...or so I thought.  It turns out, the inner filter/basket lid was missing.  I learned why shortly AFTER I bought it.  It was part of a recall and the inner lids were turned in to make them "unusable". 

Did that stop me? Nope.

Did you know that a wide mouth mason jar lid is slightly too large to fit inside the basket and the cut off tin from a can of pineapple is slightly too small?  I thought, perhaps, something lightweight, but porous, might work to allow water through and keep the grounds down.

I went ahead a tried a batch.  I filled with cold water to the 10 cup mark inside the pot, inserted the "parts", added the grounds and sea salt and topped it with my attempt at grind control and the lid.

I set the stove on slightly above medium, trying to simulate the kind of heat my wood stove would put out.  Nothing like a cup of coffee to warm the bones in the dead of winter during a power outage, eh?  It took about 20 minutes to come to temperature...or start spurting water out the middle thingy.  It turned coffee colored fairly quickly.  It started getting a little violent in there, but smelling lovely, so I turned it off completely and just let it sit on the burner.  It spewed for about 5 more minutes before it settled down.  It was too hot to touch any part of it, but the handle for a while.  Eventually, I was able to use a pot holder to turn the clear knob on top to remove the lid.

A milk filter with a hole cut in the center did nothing to keep the grounds from bubbling over the edge of the basket.

I found a screened ladle, removed the filter basket apparatus by the middle thingy, set it aside and poured a cup.  There were 4 or 5 grains of coffee screened out.  I added my sugar and gelatin and STIRRED briskly.  I wanted to make sure the gelatin was dissolved and help release some heat.  (I have a feeling this batch was significantly hotter than with a drip machine as there was zero evidence of gelatin being added.  Usually, there's at least a little stuck to the spoon.)  I added the cream when I thought it was sufficiently cooled, so it wouldn't curdle the cream...... and I was tired of waiting.

Verdict:  It's a keeper!  It tastes the same, if not better, should work during an outage....AND I may figure out a simple solution to the spewed grounds problem.  The only real drawback is it may fall apart without notice.

I'll make it a point to bring the cup to the pot instead of the other way around, I guess.

Simple Lives Thursday


  1. I have no idea how a percolator like that works, but could you just put a piece of thin cloth or a coffee filter in the top of your coffee mug to catch the grounds as you pour it out?

  2. I think they all work about the same.

    Getting it out of the coffee isn't a problem, it's keeping it out in the first place. I'll just have to go through my "not thrown away because it might be useful someday" stashes.

  3. I have been on the lookout for a perculator - they are so expensive brand new. Keeping my fingers crossed. Also, I am super impressed with your ingenuity!