In the world of personal finance, much has been made about the latte-factor. The latte-factor is typically used to demonstrate how a small cost over time can add up to tremendous amounts. For instance, $3 per day, over 30 years at a 6% interest adds up to almost $100,000.

That is all fine and well, but what is usually ignored is the following factor.

Many people really do enjoy a good cup of coffee. Are they supposed to give it up for the poor excuse of coffee that is the brown water which typically results from the office coffee machine. Not at all. It just requires a little effort to brew a cup of coffee which tastes every bit as good as the real stuff.

I brew my coffee every morning. It is my morning ritual. I do most of it by hand.

I used to roast my own coffee. This can be done using a hot air popcorn machine or simply by shaking a pan on the stove. Coffee pops like popcorn and once you reach the desired roast, you stop and cool the beans rapidly. I then used two collanders to shake the hulls off much like farmers historically separated the wheat from the chaff. This process can be done once a week. It makes for some really strong coffee when the beans are freshly roasted. Unfortunately, it is hard to get consistent results, so now I just buy pre roasted beans.

The next step is to get a coffee grinder. I got mine on freecycle. It basically works like a blender. I grind the beans just before I use them. Actually I do it while I heat my water in the microwave.

Now comes the most important part and why many coffee machines make poor coffee. Using a thermometer to get the temperature of the water exactly right. The right temperature is 195F. I use a meat thermometer. If the water is hotter, the coffee becomes bitter. If it is cooler, the coffee becomes tasteless (brown water).

I use a reuseable gold filter and pour the water over little by little to allow it to seep slowly through the coffee. This also extracts more taste. If the temperature drops below 191F, I reheat the water.

Granted, this process is more involved than just running it through the regular coffee machine, but it is faster than taking a detour around the cafe to pick it up and pay $3 on top of that.

Daily Yakezie Short Carnival: Dirty 30’s Dieting – It’s easy to lose weight when your family’s starving @ Single Mom Rich Mom, The “High Cost of Raising Children” Myth @ Single Mom Rich Mom, & Razors: Saving Money the Millionaire Nurse Way @ The Millionaire Nurse Blog

Originally posted 2010-05-27 00:36:48.