The stovetop espresso maker, commonly referred to as the Moka pot utilizes the basic principles of physics for achieving a perfect cup of finely brewed coffee. So, how does a stovetop espresso maker work? It's really simple!
There are three chambers in it, the first one is for water, the second one for coffee grounds and the final chamber is for delivering the final product.
When you place the pot over the stovetop, it causes the water to heat up and generate steam. This surges the pressure build-up at the bottom chamber and pushes up the water moving up through the grounded coffee and finally making its way to the upper chamber when the coffee is ready.
It only functions with a limited pressure build-up of 1.5 bars which is nowhere close to the 9 bars of pressure produced in the new-age espresso makers. However, the simplicity of design along with its ability to make great cups of coffee has made it a trusted utensil in households across the globe.
Are Stovetop Espresso Makers Good?
If you talk to a traditional Italian homemaker, she will tell you that stovetop espresso makers are really good. But a mere word of mouth is not enough when you are looking out for how does a stovetop espresso maker work.
It is one of the most conventional kitchen utensils when it comes to making espresso coffee at home. It is easy and quick and gives a full-bodied cup of great coffee with a rich aroma.
The mechanics of stove top espresso makers are simple when you wish to use them at home even though there are some minute but crucial fundamental tricks of using them.
The water temperature, type of ground used, and the intensity of flame determine the effectiveness of stovetop espresso makers.
All you need to do is some practice along with a careful eye. Everyone has their distinct style of brewing coffee and you can have a perfect cup of coffee once you understand how the espresso maker works.
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How Long Does A Stovetop Espresso Maker Take?
Many coffee enthusiasts relish the thorough process of coffee making, rather than rushing through the steps. Generally, the process may take somewhere between a few minutes to half an hour and it depends on your choice of stovetop espresso maker and the coffee grinds.
According to coffee lovers, a slow brew on a low flame gives a better cup of espresso but this opinion may vary from one person to another.
If you set up the espresso pot on a high flame, then the heat from the burner can rise up to the grounds basket in the middle chamber and give you a cup of coffee in no time. But you may get a potential burnt flavor in it.
On the flip side, if you choose to go slow on a low flame, then the heat of the burner will lead to the formation of steam in the lower chamber, and the middle coffee chamber will remain at a cool temperature and it will not burn your coffee.
It will also cause the slow building of pressure while increasing the contact time between the coffee and water to increase.
As a result, the brewing process will be able to capture the sweetness, aroma, and all the essential flavors of the coffee in harmony with one another. Needless to say, this process of brewing would take around 15 to 20 minutes to prepare.
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How Do You Know When Stovetop Espresso Is Done?
Only a few fundamental steps can get you a hot and rich cup of express within a few minutes. First of all, you will have to unscrew the upper part of your stovetop espresso and fill up the lower part with water up to the safety valve.
You can easily locate this part inside the water chamber. Next, you will have to replace the filter basket located on the upper part of the pot.
Make sure that the coffee is at level with the filter top. To achieve this, you may also pat it with any flat object like the back of a spoon. You mustn't tamp the coffee down very tightly since it can create a lot of pressure and lead to spraying of hot coffee everywhere.
If you find any stray coffee grinds at the edge of the filter basket, you must remove them at this stage. This will ensure easy screwing on the upper half without any unwanted obstructions.
Now, you may put the stovetop over a brisk flame. But it must not be larger compared in to the diameter of the pot bottom. In case you are not equipped with a small burner, you may consider using a stovetop heat diffuser for taming the flame.
As the coffee starts emerging, you can hear gurgling and bubbling sounds and it's time to pit out the flame. The remaining part of the coffee will eventually percolate through and you will know it's ready when the upper part is full and steam comes out of the spout.
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Final Thoughts to How Does a Stovetop Espresso Maker Work
When you are thinking about how does a stovetop espresso maker work, it's worth noting that the kind of coffee you have selected along with the size of the grinds are two crucial attributes. It's suggested that you use medium-grind coffee that is particularly roasted for making espresso.
The standard Northern European drip or American espresso blends do not work since they are not ground in the right consistency and comes with a number of bitter oils.
Stovetop espresso makers have been in vogue since the 1930s and they're still able to give stiff competition to the modern coffee machines.
They are particularly suited for dark roasts. And if you are thinking about why you should use a stovetop espresso maker in 2021, then there are plenty of reasons to convince you. Actually, these pots are symbolic of a lifestyle and are the oldest and most revolutionary inventions that helped in the surging popularity of stovetop espresso makers.
Moreover, it's convenient to use and produces a thick and creamy coffee that you are surely going to love.