The humble moka pot: make great tasting espresso at home!

So you love espresso. It’s what you drink in a café, never with milk. How coffee should be. But what do you do when the café is closed or you have to work from home and you still need your espresso fix. Don’t worry because the humble moka pot has your back.


The moka pot or stove top is a brewing method that goes back all the way to 1933 when Alfonso Bialletti invented it. It quickly caught on as it made strong espresso coffee which was easy to brew at home. To this day Bialetti still makes the moka pot and I think it’s great.


Sadly you might well be reading this and thinking that the old thing sitting at the back of the cupboard only makes a thick treacle like sludge. Surely it can’t make a good cup of coffee. Guess what, it can! Read more to hear why we think it’s a really underrated brewing technique.


What you’ll need:


  • A moka pot - they come in various sizes but we would normally go for a 1 or 3 cup model for home use
  • 18 grams of coffee beans - you can use espresso or filter beans for this recipe just make sure they're fresh!
  • Scales
  • Filtered water
  • Grinder

The key to preventing the horrible sludge moka pots have been known to produce is to use quite a coarse grind. It sounds odd for an espresso but it really brings out the flavours and stops the ground coffee from ending up in your cup as sediment.


Here's how to brew it: 

 

  • Grind your beans - if you’re using a Wilfa Svart try a few clicks towards ‘mocca’ from the line marking ‘aeropress’.
  • Boil your filtered water. 
  • Once your water is boiled then pour 100 grams of boiling water into the base of the moka pot.
  • Next add your ground coffee to the basket and level it off - no need to tamp!
  • Screw the whole contraption together nice and tight and place on your stove, aim for a medium to high heat.
  • Because you have pre boiled the water the extraction should be over in around 30 seconds.
  • When it has stopped bubbling then lift the lid to make sure it has finished brewing.
  • Remove from the hob and run the base under a cold tap for a few seconds to fully halt the extraction.
  • Pour into your cup and you’re good to go!

 

Enjoy your espresso, but watch out because it will be very hot. 


You should find the taste strong and punchy but also elegant enough to savour all the intricate tastes and flavour profiles. 


This recipe does make quite a long shot as you’ll end up with 80 grams of coffee. If you want a really short espresso just knock the weight of water down to 60 or even 40 grams but keep the weight of the ground coffee the same. 


Hopefully the moka pot will undergo a well deserved renaissance as your brew method of choice after you’ve tried this recipe and if it doesn’t then why not check out one of our other brew guides. We’ve got something for everyone.


In the meantime, bon appetite!