Re: RARA-AVIS: Practical tips from hardboiled dicks

From: Juri Nummelin (
Date: 07 Nov 2000

James Rogers wrote:

> ->could someone with scientific smarts please explain what the heck the
> >eggshell does to the coffee?
> I have heard the efficacy disputed, and I lack the scientific smarts you
> refer to, but supposedly it makes the grounds settle and the resulting
> coffee less bitter. Obviously, in a world of Mr. Coffees and percolators
> this should have no relevance at all, but I have known old timers that just
> religiously did it anyway.

This is veering dangerously toward the Off-Topic, but here goes:

I don't know what they do actually, but I believe it has something to do with the calcium that eggshells contain. They clear it up, just like they clear home-made bouillon. I think -- don't quote me on this -- the eggs gather the foam that comes when boiling coffee in a kettle or making bouillon from bones and other pieces of meat. I'll ask my wife who is a science teacher when she comes home, she knows all these things.

Alongside with eggshells, the Finns have used also fish scales to clear coffee. This sound very growse, but I know it's been done. Question comes to mind: who was the first one to throw fish scales into a coffee pot?


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