The method we are going to describe here is referred to as the Neapolitan way of making caffè at home. The foam, in this case, will be generated by hand.
You’ll need the following items to make a legit Italian espresso at home: your favorite espresso (popular Italian brands are Illy, Lavazza, and Kimbo), cold water, a Moka, a container in which to create the espresso foam beforehand, and small cups (preferably ceramic espresso cups), lastly sugar.
1. Fill With Cold Water
Fill the Moka with cold water. The amount of water needed is measured by the height of the relief valve on the side.
2. Insert the Strainer
Insert the strainer into its base.
3. Add Your Favorite Coffee Grounds
Fill the strainer with coffee grounds. You can use a teaspoon or if you want to be perfect, you will need a Dosa Caffe (it basically is a dispenser), which will dose the right amount of coffee ground for your strainer.
4. Assemble the Moka
Assemble your espresso Moka. While doing that, ensure that no grounds are on the outside rim. Screw the Moka onto the base by holding the Moka itself, not the handle. If you screw by the handle you might break it, but don’t worry, the handle is usually replacable.
5. Place the Espresso Moka Over Heat
Place the Moka over a low flame. A low flame increases the brew time, which, as result, enhances the flavor. You need to brew your coffee slowly.
If your stove burners can’t hold the Moka because they are too far apart, then you need to look for an adapter to place below the Moka. You might find it at any hardware store.
6. Get ready with some Sugar
While the coffee is brewing, add sugar to a cup or mug. As a rule of thumb, you can start with about a teaspoon per cup. If the Moka is for 4 cups then you will need 4 teaspoons of sugar.
7. Pour the Coffee and Mix it with Sugar
This is a very sensitive step and may take some practice to get it ight. As soon as the espresso starts coming out, remove the pot from the burner and pour some of the coffee into the cup with the sugar.
Adding too little is much better than adding too much. At this point you have some espresso coffee with the sugar, so start stirring. The result will be a slurry with the consistency of peanut butter or maybe thinner.
REMEMBER: You should use ONLY the first espresso out of the MOKA since it is the strongest.
8. Pour More Coffee
When the espresso stops brewing, you will know this as the Moka will make a rumbling sound, pour about half of it into the mixing cup.
9. Stir, Add the Remaining coffee, and Mix Again
Stir the mixture vigorously, this will likely produce a thick foam. Once thoroughly mixed, add the remaining coffee to the cup and mix once again. The amount of foam produced will highly depend on the technique and the amount of sugar used. With time and practice, you’ll be able to make the perfect coffee every time, just like a Neapolitan.
10. Serve the coffee in ceramic cups
Here comes the best part. Pour the coffee into small ceramic cups or small glass transparent cups. You can use a spoon to get the foam into the cups if necessary.
Here is a tip: since the cups are small, the coffee can easily become cold very very quickly. To keep it hotter longer, place the cups in hot water just before you start brewing the espresso. When you pour the espresso into the hot cups, it will retain the heat and allow you to serve a great hot espresso to friends or family members.