Welcome back coffee lovers to another blog. So, a few months back I ordered a Moka Pot from Amazon. This is the second time I have owned the Moka Pot after my first one, which was gifted, became dangerous to use after the handle broke off. That was over 2 years ago and honestly, I was not in a rush to buy another one as I was not too fond of it in the first place.
Well, I always liked the look of the Moka Pot and how it works but I didn’t enjoy the coffee it produced. The problem is trying to decipher what type of coffee the Moka Pot is actually meant to make. Is it meant to produce espresso-style coffee or some sort of filter coffee? I think that’s what makes it confusing to use because on its own it’s half a cup of really strong and at times bitter coffee.
However, 2 years on and following some interesting Instagram accounts dedicated to Moka Pot, triggered me into buying it again. But this time, I had a better coffee grinder, better quality water and some brewing experience. I wanted to make my own method that tasted spot on and not just strong. So I ended up using it frequently and came up with 5 tips to help you make better coffee with the Moka Pot.
1. Don’t use cold water when filling the chamber
Let’s start with the first tip which is more of a ‘don’t do this’ advice. Before you start brewing with the Moka Pot, you need to fill up the bottom chamber with water. It’s recommended to fill that chamber up with hot water instead of cold. I think this might be a common mistake people make but it’s quite a big one because it leads to bitter-tasting coffee.
You would think the logic using cold water would mean the water heats up whilst on the stove. However, the water won’t heat up to the correct temperature in time before it makes contact with the coffee. That means the coffee is being brewed in a colder temperature and producing bitter coffee. So using hot water is the key and don’t worry it does not overheat to the point it ruins the brew.
2. Less is more – measure you coffee beans
Okay, I am pretty sure a high majority of people who use the Moka Pot will fill the coffee basket all the way to the top. I mean it feels like the correct thing to do. This is what I used to do as well but the coffee always felt too strong.
The Moka Pot is built to make two small cups of coffee (again think like an espresso). But for a single cup filling the basket up is too much and using a lesser amount still works. So I started adding less coffee each time and as you might expect the coffee tasted less stronger but also better. This is when you can start to experience the flavour notes of the coffee. As well as saving some coffee beans in the process.
3. Use the different grind sizes
Another thing that people tend to just stick with when using the Moka Pot is the fine grind size. As the Moka Pot is known for making strong coffee espresso-style. So a lot of the time people will use a finer grind sized coffee to mimic an espresso.
But to the black coffee lovers like myself who enjoy filter coffee, you don’t have to make the coffee grind size fine. In fact, medium-fine to medium grind sizes also work. This allows you more flexibility in adjusting your coffee strength and desired flavour. Now it’s perfectly fine (no pun intended) to use fine size ground coffee, it’s what I use but I dial it back slightly depending on the coffee I have.
4. Dilute with extra water
One thing I will advise anyone using the Moka Pot and finding the taste too strong is to dilute with water. This allows you to find the right taste, right flavour, and sweeten the coffee up a bit. The Moka Pot by design does not look like you can try different methods. But adding water does give you a little more versatility.
I enjoy a method where I ultimately make a filter-style coffee using the Moka Pot and it involves adding quite a bit of water. However, the body of the coffee is a lot heavier than traditional filter coffee but you still develop a lot of flavours. I will share this method in a post coming soon but I would recommend experimenting with the Moka Pot.
5. Clean the Moka Pot
The last tip is very most important to ensure you avoid bad tasting coffee from the Moka Pot. That is to ensure you clean it thoroughly. Like all coffee equipment, the Moka Pot needs a good scrub after every use. This is because the grounds get stuck inside the brewer. Which will lead to a bitter cup the next time you use it.
Now cleaning includes taking it apart and ensuring the inside chamber is cleaned too. The other bit is taking out the rubber band underneath the top component and making sure you clean that along with the little silver disc thing.
In all honesty, it may seem a nuisance and a bit excessive but once you do it after every use, you realise it does not take too long to clean. It’s not easy like the Aeropress. But it’s not anything close to cleaning like a french press which is the most annoying coffee equipment to clean.
So there you go, some tips that should help you make good tasty coffee with the Moka Pot. In all honesty, the Moka Pot is more flexible then you think and I have tasted some amazing coffee from it the past couple of months. I think it’s perfect for people who don’t have a espresso machine but want to enjoy some espresso roasted speciality coffee.
There are so many different ways to enjoy the Moka Pot. I didn’t realised this when I first bought it. Now I like to play around and experiment with it. Hopefully there will be more posts on the Moka Pot in the future. But before that, buy a Moka Pot or take it out of your cupboard and give it a go. Because you might finally enjoy using it, just like I did.
If you are interested in buying the Moka Pot then the classic version is the Bialetti brand. You can check the current pricing on Amazon by clicking here. Also, interested in a electric coffee grinder? Check out my review of the Wilfa Svart here, a brilliant domestic coffee grinder.
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