Do you fill coffee filters in advance?

marie26August 4, 2008

I make coffee every morning and was wondering if there is a container that is made for holding a week's worth of coffee filters that already have ground coffee in them. I've tried to do this by putting them on top of each other in a coffee tin and perhaps this is the only way to do it. Do you have another method or am I the only one who wants to prepare this in advance?

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If that's working for you, and you don't mind how your coffee tastes, then it sounds like you have a good system worked out. I don't really like to grind my beans ahead of time though, as I think they go stale rather quickly so we make Toddy Coffee. It's a cold brewing method that I like because the acid isn't released from the bean, so it results in a smoother cup. Because you prepare and brew one pound of coffee at a time, there's always a pitcher of ''liquid instant'' in the fridge; all you have to do to make coffee is heat your water and add it. The nice thing is you don't have to deal with coffee grounds until you make the next pitcher, which for us is usually two or three weeks. Most people we serve this to are impressed by the taste of the coffee and ask us about it.

We also have an espresso maker and dh likes to use a vacuum pot on the weekends, so we tend to grind our beans as fresh as possible.

Here is a link that might be useful: Toddy Coffee

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 2:10PM
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We've been making cold-brewed coffee for iced coffee (a Southern staple) forever. In my view, the real thing is made with Cafe du Monde New Orleans coffee with chicory. If you don't already know it, it comes in an orangey-yellow tin, and we can get it in the grocery store. It's also readily available by mail order.
I'm sure the Toddy thing is very good...but I use my medium sized stainless stock pot. I put in a cup of cold water, stir in a pound of coffee, and stir in another cup of cold water, making sure the grounds are all wet. Then, I add eight more cups of cold water very slowly and gently, so as not to disturb the grounds too much. I cover it, and let it sit for 12 hours. Then I strain the concentrate twice, first using a regular sieve, and then a fine sieve with a layer of cheesecloth...I don't like the mud in the bottom!
The result is about 8 cups of concentrate, which I put into the fridge in a glass's good for about two weeks, and makes about 30 cups or glasses of coffee, with no waste, because you make only what you drink.
For iced coffee, we mix 1/4 concentrate with 3/4 milk...for cafe au lait, hot milk. For regular coffee, hot water.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 2:37PM
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claire_de_luna and bronwynsmom--you can make hot coffee using the cold-brew method?

I thought it was really only for cold coffee.

(10 cups of water total, for the 1 pound?)

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 2:55PM
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We used to grind our beans but now we've found a coffee that's already ground fine that we enjoy. We only each drink one large cup first thing in the morning.

I just want to make this everyday routine a little easier. I'm at the point where I'm getting very tired of having to do certain things every single day, 365 days a year and am trying to make this routine easier.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 3:06PM
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marie26 - I completely understand about wanting to streamline your morning!

I have one of these things from the Container Store. You hold it over the filter, squeeze the handle, and ground coffee drops out the bottom One squeeze = 1 Tablespoon.

Here is a link that might be useful: Coffee Dispenser

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 4:06PM
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I personally think the "stacked filters in a coffee can" is pretty ingenious.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 4:24PM
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claire_de_luna doesn't seem like you need a new method, if the old one is working for you.

Yes, Talley Sue, I always make my hot coffee with the cold brew. We've been making it that way for years; it's most excellent...very smooth, and doesn't matter what kind of coffee you use, whether it's a flavored coffee or the chicory variety.

Here is a link that might be useful: Instructions for Toddy Coffee

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 5:12PM
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Yes, for hot coffee...just add hot water or hot milk, or a balance of both that pleases you, to the concentrate. As easy and fast as instant coffee, and really delicious. It has a natural sweetness (I notice it because I don't add sugar to coffee anyway), no bitterness, and it's easier on the tummy.

And, yes, total of ten cups of water...some people say nine. Try it both ways and see what you like.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 5:27PM
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So what kind of grind--how fine? My DH grinds his own beans, but if I'm going to use an entire pound at once, it would be worth it to have them ground at the coffee store.

OK, now we have *totally* hijacked poor Marie's thread.

Any other ideas for Marie, and her wish to eliminate one of those stupid repetitive morning chores?

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 5:42PM
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Well, it wasn't my intention to hijack Marie's thread, but instead share another option for having to deal with the daily filter/coffee conundrum. My apologies if this isn't relevant, but I really thought it was, which is why I brought it up.

To answer your question Talley Sue, the instructions on the site I linked to say:

NOTES: Different coffee brewing methods require different types of grinds. It's important that you use a universal or, better yet, coarsely ground coffee with your Toddy.

If you grind your beans at home, you may use an inexpensive blade grinder, grinding your beans between 9-11 seconds - similar to the grind used in an old-fashioned percolator.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 6:04PM
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I guess I felt like *I* was hijacking, bcs I wasn't looking for any ideas for Marie at all--just horning in w/ specific questions about how to do something *I* am interested in.

Goofed again.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 6:37PM
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Oh, another thought for Marie.

This just occurred to me.

have you organized your coffee tasks/storage so that you aren't walking all over the kitchen, but rather every little thing is RIGHT where you need to use it?

Here's why I ask: I find that those repetitive tasks (paying bills, folding clothes, feeding the cat) are annoying when there's a lot of wasted motion.
If I have to walk to the fridge to get the can of food, take 2 steps to get a bowl, reach over to get a knife, rummage around 2 drawers over to find a lid for the leftovers, etc., it feels like a lot to do.

When I can store everything a half-an-arm's-length away from where I'm using it, it feels like no work at all.

Maybe that's not the source of your frustration w/ those seemingly-tiny-yet-multi-part daily tasks, but I thought it was worth mentioning.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 6:41PM
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claire_de_luna it's a mystery! I guess only Marie will be able to tell us whether any of our ideas are worth anything, since she's the one who wants to simply the task. I wondered something similar; that maybe it's not the container as much as the task itself. (Because you see, I would probably vacuum seal the filters with the coffee in them just to keep them fresh. That doesn't make the task any easier or more efficient though, if you have to vacuum seal the container every time you use it. The trick to this question is...What is the question really about?) Marie?? Care to illuminate for us?

Talley Sue, please don't feel like you goofed. I sometimes feel in this particular forum like I'm not contributing much, even when I contribute! At any rate, if the Toddy Coffee is something you think you might be interested in, do try it; I'm happy to answer any questions about it that I can. If you Google, there are lots of testimonials about why people like it. Not only does it cut back on the ''work''of making coffee, It's also GOOD! (We are total coffee geeks, So There it is.)

As a side note, I have an old glass filter top that I use which is from the 1930's, from an old cold brew contraption, that I start cuttings from plants in. (Overturned really, and used as a mini-greenhouse.) Since it's glass, yet has a hole at the top/bottom, it allows the plants to breathe, while it's growing roots. I figure if something happens to my plastic filter, I can always use the glass one!

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 7:08PM
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Everything I use for the coffee are all right next to each other. I thought that someone would have invented a special container just for this.

BTW, I wasn't bothered by the cold coffee discussion. My concern is that I'm really bothered by doing the exact same thing over and over again and wanted to streamline my morning. Doesn't this sort of attitude get to everyone?

The stacked filters in the coffee can works but since I don't want to spend time making the can "counter worthy", I was looking for something already made for this purpose.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 7:12PM
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Maybe, if you're bored by doing the same silly little routine over and over, you need to shake things up and make it MORE elaborate, just for a little while?

For some variety?

Since you are sort of wishing, it seems, for a gadget, then maybe you should add something sort of gimmicky to your morning coffee routine.

Maybe try the cold coffee thing, so that you'll feel like an adventuresome coffee geek each morning for a month, instead of feeling like a boring person w/ tedium awaiting at every turn? (do the stockpot version to see if you like it, if you don't want to spend on the Toddy)

Or something else that will make it feel like *more* of a ceremony for a little while.

I get tired of routines as well, but I don't agonize over it the way you are w/the coffee, I think because I am *less* responsible (and therefore *less* admirable), and I just blow the whole thing and stop doing it, and make my life harder in an unpleasant way. And then I have to restart.

Maybe you could make your life harder in a MORE pleasant way? And define it as "fun experimentation"?

And if it's just that you want to make your current routine feel a little special, maybe you could just look for a prettier airtight canister the size of the coffee can.

this one is 4.25" across, so the opening is probably just under 4"--too narrow?
this stainless one is a teensy bit wider.
And there are even more-decorative ones like this

NexTag had some nice ideas if you search "airtight canister" and other terms.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2008 at 11:29AM
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Marie, I'm intrigued about the cold brewed method of making coffee. Is there a way a can do this on a smaller level. I have a 8 cup coffee press (34 oz carafe) and was wondering if there is a way I can make cold brewed coffee.
I am the only one at home that drinks coffee so making it by the cup really makes sense.


    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 9:25AM
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Janet, since I introduced the cold brewed coffee discussion, I'll say that yes, you can make it in smaller amounts, but not in your coffee press. The toddy coffee maker has a particular kind of filter the coffee drips through, and directly into the carafe. (You don't have to use their carafe, but I find the filter contraption extremely helpful.) If I were making it just for me, I would make it by the half pound, just to keep it fresh. I suppose you could make it the way bronwynsmom describes if you don't want to invest in the Toddy maker, but for the quality of coffee you get, I think it's very inexpensive as far as coffeemakers go.

Here is a link that might be useful: Toddy instructions

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 11:39AM
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I know this thread is a couple weeks old, and since I don't drink coffee at all (*gasp*), I really have no opinion on how to store it or make it. :-)

That disclaimer aside, if you really like the convenience of having the coffee portioned out into filters ahead of time (which does seem like it would streamline your morning), but it's the *can* you don't like, do you have a nice stoneware cookie jar you might use instead? Something cute, that maybe you don't use for cookies anymore? I'm sure freshness is an issue (I'm a tea drinker - freshness is super-important there), so if you put either a large ziplock bag in the jar, or simply cover the rim with plastic wrap before you put the lid on, that should help keep the coffee fresh.

Or what about a nice pantry/countertop jar that has the seal on the rim (like they sell for flour/sugar)...that would keep everything sealed up nicely, and your coffee would still be portioned out for each day.

Just a couple ideas for alternate storage solutions, assuming you like having it all portioned out ahead of time (sounds like it works great to me!). :-)

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 12:08PM
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I do a few of them at at time. .We have a Gevalia coffee maker that has two insulated thermal cups, one on each side. You can make either one cup or both at the same time. It holds the cone shaped filters. To make it easier and quicker for him, I put the coffee in the filters then fold the top over, staple it shut. I have a rooster cookie jar I keep them in. All he has to do is put the water in, plop a already filled filter in and hit the on button. It save me from cleaning up coffee grinds off the counter top also. .Debbie

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 11:57PM
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dbfirewife, I used to have that Gevalia coffee maker but it broke. We're now using the Gevalia coffee maker that has the glass carafe and it also uses a cone filter. I had never thought of stapling the top. I guess it wouldn't make a difference to the coffee if the filter covered the coffee completely. One reason I was looking for a better system was that when I stacked the fresh ground coffee in their filters on top of each other, coffee would stick in the bottom crease from the filter below it. I'm definitely going to try this.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 12:25AM
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marie26 - My DH travels a lot and he used to bring home some of the extra coffee pillow packs hotels use for in-room coffee (this was before airline restrictions got so stringent). I especially like having a few packs of decaf because we donÂt usually drink decaf but it is nice to have on hand for guests who do. The packs stay fresh and taste well even after storing in the cupboard for a long time. I would use as many as three at a time of these prefilled coffee filters to make the desired number of cups. Very easy and convenient! One drawback is that they could be on the expensive side for every day use.

Cold-brewed coffee is intriguing - I'd never heard of it before.


Here is a link that might be useful: prefilled coffee filters

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 7:40AM
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Elizabethzen, I had checked into those filters but since we've moved, we find that we enjoy Tim Horton's ground coffee. I wish it came in those packs. I, too, take the coffee packs from the hotels and also use the decaf for those odd times we want it.

As per those filters, I thought I'd just buy a pod maker but from what I could tell, they only come in single serve sizes. I want 4-cup and 8-cup pods. I wonder if there is a way to heat seal my cone filters without a pod maker.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 12:25PM
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Marie, for a while I pre-measured my coffee . . . My current coffee maker uses the #4 triangular-shaped filters, so it was easy to measure the coffee and just fold the filter back up. I stored them "filed" vertically in a Tupperware container that could be sealed. Worked fine . . . I just got out of the habit of doing it.

Claire_de_Luna, you've opened up a whole new world to me! Our new kitchen will have a little beverage bar area -- all coffee, tea, cocoa, mugs, etc. there, mini fridge for cold drinks; prep sink with hot / cold water dispenser. Sounds like the Toddy system would be perfect . . . container of concentrate in the fridge, squirt of hot water from the dispenser and we're good to go. And no coffeemaker on the counter!! Wow! Thanks for sharing this!!

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 12:37PM
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We have free coffee service at work (YEAH!) and they stock the Folgers pre-filled, sealed filters. It's like a coffee ground "sandwich" sealed between two filters. I don't know if you can by them retail, but if so, they are great!

My coffee maker at home has one of those permanent filters, sort of made out of a mesh cloth and plastic frame. I just dump out he grounds and wash it every day.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2008 at 8:59PM
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I have been using hostagrams method of standing the filled filters in a plastic container. So far, it's been working very well. Thank you, everyone, for your help with this.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2008 at 10:20PM
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Marie, I have a freezer bag full of my pre-filled coffee filters. I pull one out each morning, remove the twist-tie and drop it in the coffee maker. Works for me and the freezer keeps it fresh tasting.

Sounds like you are already cutting out a step by pre-filling your tin. :))

    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 8:18PM
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A couple of days after I wrote my last post, I bought a new coffee maker and instead of the cone shaped filters, this one uses the other flat filters (with sides). I now stack them in a tin. I will look for a fancy one that will at least make me smile when I use it.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 8:48PM
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