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How do you operate a stove top coffee maker?

© kaipity (Fotolia) espresso
© kaipity (Fotolia)
Preparing the pot
Stove top coffee makers have been around for decades and can even be used while camping on a portable stove.

How to prepare the pot?
The original design of stove top coffee makers are the iconic Bialetti Cafe Moka coffee pots.
These designs are constructed from aluminium and so will not work on induction hobs.
Check the specification of your cooker before using a Moka pot.

Brewing process
The first stage of the brewing process is to take the unit apart and remove the filter.
Fill the water reservoir up to the safety valve with cold tap water.

If you fill the water higher than this, then the pressure release valve will not function correctly, making the product potentially dangerous.

Next, insert the metal funnel / filter.
Fill this to the very top with quality gourmet coffee. If you are grinding your own beans, do not grind them too finely.

Unlike real espresso machines, you do not need to tamp the coffee and in fact, doing so will mean that the rising steam does not permeate the grounds properly.

Next, screw on the top and place on the stove.
Using and cleaning the pot
Using the pot
Heat on a medium to high heat for approximately eight minutes.
When you hear the the coffee bubble, you know that it is ready.
Do not be tempted to open the lid whilst you can hear a gurgling sound, as the hot coffee is still being released and may burn you.

Strength of the brew
The strength of your brew is down to personal tastes.
For most people, a standard design, classic Moka pot will produce enough coffee for two people.
There are a variety of sizes available for purchase, up to the largest Bialetti six cup model.

Quantity
Pour the coffee into two separate cups and you will notice that there is not a lot there. Remember that this is an espresso.
To make an Americano, you will need to add hot water and for latte, milk.

Final word
If you prefer a cappuccino beverage and still wish to use a stove top coffee maker, then the Bialetti Mukka is the product for you and even features a playful Friesian cow style exterior.

According to the user manual, cleaning should be done immediately after cooling with warm water and a clean cloth.
Avoid using harsh detergents as this may affect the taste of your coffees.

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