OK, in the last post I told you some about stoves that I have used and the new Jetboil Flash System that Brett Causey from Hog Haven Products, http://www.hoghaven.net/ - Phone: (318) 347-1020 sent me to try out. A few days ago I received the coffee press that works with the system and have been testing it. If you are like me, and that morning cup of joe is an important part of getting the day started on the right foot, then you will understand why coffee is worthy of its own discussion.
In years past I have used a small perk pot to brew my morning java when I am motorcycle camping. It is a compact affair with the expected simplicity, making two cups of coffee. It is made of aluminum, and disassembled, it is composed of six parts; pot, stem, basket, basket lid, pot lid and glass perk dome, exactly the same as a home stove top percolator. My trusty old pot features a black plastic (probably bakelite) handle that has been burned and charred on the bottom area where it attaches to the pot. The diameter of the pot is smaller than the burner’s flame on any of my propane stoves. Combine that with moments of inattention or carelessness or simply the shifting of the ever-present wind while cooking, and burning the handle is unavoidable. It makes an acceptable cup of coffee, yet I often burn the coffee a little right along with burning the handle, and that handle can get hot enough to burn the hand that pours the coffee. The aluminum pot transfers heat real fast, which both speeds boiling and the cooling of the second cup of coffee once the pot is removed from the flame. While I have an obvious almost nostalgic attachment to it, it is a true pain in the butt to clean all those parts at a simple campsite. The process of burning away the handle has long numbered its days of useful service. It has now been given a graceful retirement.
The Jetboil Flash System and the elegant Coffee Press accessory have replaced the need to carry a separate coffee pot. I simply set the stove up and fill it with two cups of water, turn the gas on, press the piezoelectric igniter and in a little under 3 minutes I have water just beginning to boil. The attached insulating cozy has a heat indicator that turns orange to let you know when the pot and contents are heated to 140º F. Since the water level is about halfway up those indicators, the lower level turns orange first. In two minutes the water is hotter than 140º F (I measured it with a kitchen thermometer) and the indicators are orange up to the top of the water level. In about 48 seconds of additional heating the water is beginning to boil and the indicators are orange all the way to the top. At that point I turn off the gas, remove the pot from the stove, add the coffee, stir and attach the coffee press and lid assembly. It is also a good idea to use the lower pot protector while you are making the coffee. Let it sit for 3 minutes, then slowly and gently press the plunger and you have two cups of fantastic coffee, hot and unburned.
A word about burning; for your safety, the longevity of your gear and the best results in making coffee, read and follow the enclosed instructions that come with both the Jetboil Flash System and the Coffee Press accessory. A few things to consider, keep the cozy properly set on the pot, which is up to the top and above the ridge of the FluxRing. This will help prevent burning it. Do watch the wind as well. Arrange the cozy so you can both see the heat indicators and have easy access to the starter button and the gas valve. Remember that the pot and contents get hot so be careful, focused and patient and in about 6 minutes you will be buzzing and not burning in java bliss.
I have found that the Jetboil Flash System and the Coffee Press accessory uses the same amount of ground coffee to make two cups as the old percolator did. The coffee comes out tastier and it seems to have both more robust flavor and that caffeine boost that we crusty old bikers need in the AM. It cleans and dries way easier that the old pot did, plus the Coffee Press attachment packs into the Jetboil System, effectively eliminating one more space consuming piece of gear and its weight. I want to thank Brett Causey from Hog Haven Products for sending me this set-up; check his web site out. I will be doing a video soon to demonstrate this pot and some of the other gear I am using for motorcycle camping cooking, so please subscribe to the Biker Billy Ring of Fire Blog to ensure you are among the first to know when the next installment is available. Till then, Eat Hot and Ride Safe!