We all know that preparing a cup of coffee isn't easy. Most especially when we're running behind our schedules for the day, waiting for that coffeemaker to finish your drip isn't really the best idea. And so, what's our contingency plan? Instant coffee!
We know that most of us are often skeptical because we have only heard bad things about the quality of it. That is why we've created this article for you to understand a little more about this instant version of a brew–the instant coffee powder.
What Is Instant Coffee?
Instant coffee is a type of coffee that is made to be soluble in water. Brewing coffee usually begins with a piece of specific equipment where coffee grounds are exposed to water for an amount of time and then filtered to create a drinkable beverage. With instant coffee, you don't need any equipment or filters at all–just a packet of your coffee powder and some water.
What Is Coffee Powder Made Of?
Instant coffee has been around since the 1930s and was originally called "coffee compound." It is made from coffee extract that has experienced phase transition processes to create the coffee powder that we know today. And as its name changed through time, so did the method of making these soluble granules–easier and more stable. The final product, however, remained the same for the most part.
How Is Instant Coffee Powder Made?
We already know the answer to what's instant coffee made of, and now it's time to find out how coffee powder is made. And there are actually two known techniques for making it.
This process begins with brewed coffee that has experienced evaporation to remove a significant amount of moisture. In a large spray-drying tower, the liquid concentrate will be sprayed in a very fine mist and through hot, dry air. By the time the droplets of coffee land, they've already dried into powder form–and instant coffee powder is made.
Have you heard of instant coffee crystals? What are instant coffee crystals? Well, they're actually similar to coffee powder, but the granules are quite bigger. This type of coffee experienced a different technique of drying to retain more of the coffee's flavor and aroma–the freeze-drying method.
First, ground coffee beans are brewed the usual way and heated subsequently until condensed, forming an extract. After which, the extract is frozen at around -40 degrees celsius and then broken down to create granules. The oversized and undersized products are processed again before they finally proceed to packaging.
In recent decades, manufacturing companies for instant coffee products have become more innovative and sophisticated. Technology advancements are made to maximize production and retain the quality of the coffee itself–specifically, the flavor and aroma.
How To Make Instant Coffee Taste Better
Despite the current expectations regarding the strength and taste of coffee, instant coffee remains to be one of the most popular options, especially for household consumers. Even if this might be the case, there are still several ways to make sure your instant coffee tastes better.
For example, adding sweeteners, milk, or creamer to your coffee is an exceptional alternative to the lattes that coffeehouses offer on their menus. Also, one hack to make sure you remove the unwanted bitterness and acidity of your instant coffee is to dilute it first with cold water before adding hot water. There are many other tips available here.
Instant Coffee In Today's Market
Half of the world's coffee consumers actually prefer instant coffee more than the freshly brewed option. Finally, the instant product's versatility, functionality, and convenience make it very attractive for buyers in the now emerging coffee market.