Grinding Coffee Beans
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What's the best way of grinding coffee beans?

By Carol Finch

If you're thinking about grinding coffee beans at home then the first thing you need to do is to choose and buy a coffee grinder. Despite popular opinion you don't need a pro rated top-level grinder to get good grinding results but you do need to put some thought into which kind of standard grinder will work best for you in comparison to others.

The advantages of grinding coffee beans for yourself are clear and simple. Coffee beans will start to lose their freshness as soon as they are ground - so, if you grind your own beans just before you brew your coffee in your chosen maker, then you'll get the freshest cup of java that you possibly can.

There are basically two types of coffee grinder when it comes to grinding coffee beans. You can of course use a manual mill if you prefer but you probably won't want to put in the effort to get inconsistent results to be quite frank. So, you'll probably find yourself looking at electric options such as Blade grinders or Burr grinders.

Blade grinders

Blade grinders have been most commonly used at home in the past to grind coffee beans. These machines are cheap to buy in most cases, they are simple to use and they do a fairly effective job of grinding up your beans quickly and simply. Here, the blade in the machine just chops up the beans - you will simply decide how fine a grind you want by the length of time that the grinder is on for.

The big disadvantage with a blade grinder is that you just cannot get a completely even grind with most of these machines. Blade grinders do grind the beans but they produce an uneven cut so the ground coffee you get will basically be chopped to different sizes.

This can result in a less tasty cup of coffee and a reduction in quality. And, as the blades create heat as they work you may also find that that taste quality of your bean is affected.

Burr Grinders

Burr grinders are now becoming more popular for domestic use - they have long been used by coffee specialists as they produce the best kind of grind according to most experts. These grinders use either a wheel or conical method to grind your beans and the way that they work gives you a very even grind so you are virtually guaranteed a better tasting cup of coffee.

The problem with burr grinders is still their cost. The fact that they work better and are more complex machines can mean that they cost more than blade grinders.

The thing you need to do before you choose which type of grinder to use is to assess how important the grind quality of your coffee is to you. If you are not that bothered and will simply use your grinder for regular coffee drinking then a blade grinder will work for you just fine and will save you some cash.

If, however, you expect more from your cup of coffee or like drinking premium coffee types then you may want to pay that little bit extra and invest in a burr grinder to make the most of the beans you buy.

The majority of major coffee maker manufacturers (such as Braun, Mr Coffee, DeLonghi and Russell Hobbs and Krups, for example) will produce some sort of grinder and it's well worth shopping around on the Internet to try and dig out a bargain when you decide which kind of grinder you want to buy.

One good tip here is to make sure that you read some other user reviews before you buy a grinder. If you can find out how a grinder worked for someone else then you'll have a better idea of how it will work for you before you shell out money on buying one.

Also see whole bean coffee grinders .


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