Another classic coffee brewing method. This is our favourite way to make espresso. It may take a bit longer than the fancy new machines that exist today but the old ways are sometimes the best ways.
This coffee maker is a staple in nearly every Italian household. We learned from a lovely Italian Nonnina that this coffee maker is never to be washed with soap. Make sure the water basin is rinsed and dried and the coffee housing on top gets the same treatment but anything else will ruin this device.
The grind for this is fairly specific. Even though it is technically an ‘espresso maker’ we don’t want an espresso grind. We want something closer to an Aeropress grind for this coffee maker. Something in the beach sand size. If the grounds are too fine, the water has a tough time pushing through and making it up top where we need it to enjoy this delicious espresso.
This is unlike newer espresso makers in another fashion: we don’t want to compress the grounds. Again this makes it too hard for the water to defy gravity and push through.
So, we add water to the bottom vessel before we put grounds in the little cup. Most of these come with a maximum fill line but we have seen a few that didn’t. A general rule of thumb, we fill it so the water is just below the pressure relief valve.
Once the water is in the bottom, we put the cup in the slot and fill it level to the top with coffee. Remember, don’t press it down. Screw the top on snugly and place on the burner over medium heat. It will take a few more minutes on medium but we want the water to get hot enough to pass through the grounds and rise up to the top container but not so hot that it ‘burns’ the grounds.
Wait to hear the distinctive bubble of the last bits of water coming to the top, give it a few minutes to cool, and enjoy!