For making moka, the chocolate syrup is nowhere in sight.
Small, two-chambered moka pots sit on many Italian stovetops, easy to use and producing a full-bodied coffee, rich in aroma.
Many have an hourglass shape, but you can find moka pots in a variety of styles, all based on the same operating principle.
Water is heated in a lower chamber.
Vapor pressure approaching two atmospheres pushes the water up through ground coffee in a filter, which collects in the upper chamber as liquid coffee.
It’s really that simple, but it does take some practice, a careful eye and the right grind, never too fine. Use a low flame, and be sure not to overheat to coffee.
Making a moka coffee:
- Fill the base chamber with cold water up to the level of the valve. Insert the filter.
- Completely fill the filter with ground coffee, but don’t pack it down.
- Make sure the filter and rubber gasket are in place. Screw the two chambers tightly together.
- Place the moka pot on the stove. Warning: keep the heat low.
- Remove pot from heat just when coffee starts to gurgle, before it starts to rise and bubble. You’ll be sure to extract only the best parts of the coffee.
- Mix the coffee with a spoon before pouring into cups.
- Rinse the coffee maker with hot water and let dry thoroughly before screwing chambers back together.
Moka pots were invented in 1930s Italy.
The name refers to the city of Mocha, Yemen, for many centuries a center of coffee excellence.
Every moka pot consists of a cylinder (bottom chamber), a filter funnel, a collector (top chamber) with a second removable filter, held in place by a rubber gasket.
The seal and removable filter should be changed periodically.