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Cleaning your equipment – grinders

September 23, 2011

Cleaning your equipment – grinders


Cleaning coffee equipment is essential to performance and taste.  I am always surprised at how many people are shocked when they find out that they should clean their burr grinder regularly.


One option is to disassemble the grinder and vacuum out all the grinds.  If you have not done this before and you open up the grinder you may be shocked to see how ugly it is inside the grinder.  There is coffee compacted into nooks and crannies that you probably never even knew were in there.


People can carefully use compressed air to blow some of the mess out of the grinder, but, of course, this can make a mess in a different part of the kitchen, too.


One other problem with disassembling the grinder is that when you reassemble it the grinder settings will not be the same as they were before you took it apart, so the carefully dialed in coffee will now have to be carefully dialed in again.


There is an easier alternative, which is to use a product like Grindz, which is just run though the grinder on a coarser setting – more like the setting for drip than for espresso, and in turn cleans out the machine.   Then you need to clean the Grindz out to keep the Grindz out of your next cup of coffee.  This is easy enough to do as you just run 4 ounces or so of coffee through and that will in turn sweep out the Grindz.  I always save some coffee that is still “good” but is past its peak for just this function.


Using Grindz once or twice a month will make a huge difference in the cleanliness of your grinder.


By the way if you do not want to use Grindz many people say that using instant rice will work well, too.  Usually people are advised to not use regular rice as it is harder than instant rice and might damage the grinders burrs, but I have not used rice and cannot judge how well it works or if instant versus not instant really matters.




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