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espresso coffee

incorporating Recipes and Cooking
mutantpoodle
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espresso coffee

#471512

Postby mutantpoodle » January 9th, 2022, 10:21 am

I have given up with espresso machines
I am the only coffee drinker in the house so its not sense to spend £00's on commercial machine

so i am now using a stovetop coffee pot....sometimes called a 'mokba' pot??
as is apparently common in Italy and Spain homes

coffee is nice and strong as wanted.

but I have question.......

some ground coffee makes/suppliers say do NOT tamper down when putting into the pot holder
others
say DO tamper down

so far am unable to discern a difference, but...does anyone have a view on this please?

in coffee shops they always tamper the grounds before putting the scoop into machine...but???

Midsmartin
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Re: espresso coffee

#471513

Postby Midsmartin » January 9th, 2022, 10:28 am

Have you looked at the Aeropress? I find it works much better than the stovetop ones.

https://www.aeropress.co.uk/

Essentially it's a big syringe with a filter to catch the coffee grounds. You can buy metal filters instead of the disposable paper ones

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Re: espresso coffee

#471518

Postby servodude » January 9th, 2022, 10:58 am

mutantpoodle wrote:so far am unable to discern a difference, but...does anyone have a view on this please?




If the beans are ground fine enough tamping can make the coffee sufficiently dense that your steam will go out the safety valve and not up through in to the pot
- which is really frustrating and a bit dangerous

I generally pour in coffee till there's a bit of a mound over the top but enough space to screw the top on without getting grounds in the thread

Commercial machines push out the steam at ~15bar (which is much higher than you'll get in a stove top pot) but it's still possible to overfill a basket and tamp it solid enough to cause problems
Taste wise if it's tamped too hard the coffee will be more bitter
It will take longer to move through the coffee and give time for the tannins to be extracted (the oily good stuff comes out first)
- but that matters more on the big machines where you're trying to pull a coffee in under half a minute (stove top pots are slower)

The Aeropress mentioned gives a very nice smooth coffee as it uses water off the boil with a quick extraction (using manual pressure) - it's different, and some prefer it
- I use one for cold coffee but make my 4 cup stove brew every morning

-sd

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Re: espresso coffee

#471521

Postby Midsmartin » January 9th, 2022, 11:09 am

Perhaps I was doing it wrong, or using the wrong coffee, but I could never get nice coffee out of a stovetop pot. I quite like somewhat bitter things: sprouts, beer, dark chocolate, coffee... But I found it near impossible to get coffee that was not undrinkably, deeply, bitter from stovetop makers. The Aeropress is controllable in that I can pour in boiling water straight from the kettle, or as I normally do, let it cool for ten seconds in a spare mug first. I agree it's not a real espresso, so maybe not what the op is looking for.

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Re: espresso coffee

#471523

Postby servodude » January 9th, 2022, 11:16 am

Midsmartin wrote:Perhaps I was doing it wrong, or using the wrong coffee, but I could never get nice coffee out of a stovetop pot. I quite like somewhat bitter things: sprouts, beer, dark chocolate, coffee... But I found it near impossible to get coffee that was not undrinkably, deeply, bitter from stovetop makers. The Aeropress is controllable in that I can pour in boiling water straight from the kettle, or as I normally do, let it cool for ten seconds in a spare mug first. I agree it's not a real espresso, so maybe not what the op is looking for.


Getting the right coffee makes the biggest difference and it needs to be ground the right way

I do like the Aeropress - I got a new travel one for Xmas :)
The spare mug is what I do also!
Unless it's a cold one - which we discovered is really good for espresso martini (you "stew" for a minute - and bam it's ready to be shaken with the rest of the ingredients)

-sd

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Re: espresso coffee

#471524

Postby Newroad » January 9th, 2022, 11:17 am

Hi MutantPoodle.

As alluded to by Servodude, it depends a bit on the grind. No matter what you read on the supermarket pack, a standard grind is not suitable for all coffee makers.

I get my coffee from here: https://algeriancoffeestores.com/collec ... ions-gifts - typically I go with the high roast "Coffee of the Month" (Gourmet Noir this month - a decent option - Veluto Nero is my favourite). The key point is that they will grind it for your machine type. To take espresso machines as an example, they will by default grind on a setting of 4.00. I prefer a setting of 4.25, as my espresso machine is a bit Mickey Mouse as compared to the commercial machines and can struggle with the 4.00 grind.

If you tell them you want it ground suitable for a stove top machine, you can indicate an equivalent from here if you like: https://algeriancoffeestores.com/collec ... pare-parts - they will do the best grind for you (ask them for what the setting is). If it is slightly too much or too little, you can adjust up or down by 0.25 in your next purchase.

Regards, Newroad

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Re: espresso coffee

#471529

Postby Mike4 » January 9th, 2022, 11:55 am

This may sound a bit Philistine, but I too like espresso and my £69 Nescafé "Dolce Gusto" coffee pod machine makes a pretty close proxy from their "Americano Intenso" pods.

Discussing coffee is a bit like discussing hi-fi with people. Some are easily pleased with pedestrian products, others are far more picky than me. I'm picky but more easily pleased than some, so it might be worth finding someone with a Nescafé machine and investing in a box of that exact pod. I think you might find it ok.

The big problem though is what to do with the pods. Are they recyclable or should they go in the bin? Oddly I was planning to look this up today!

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Re: espresso coffee

#471532

Postby mc2fool » January 9th, 2022, 12:01 pm

mutantpoodle wrote:so far am unable to discern a difference, but...does anyone have a view on this please?

It's actually called a moka. It's the method I use to make coffee and I was first taught how to use it by Italians, in Italy, and I've watched numerous of the same use one, and the instruction always is to just smooth over the coffee. However, as I've always done that and never tried tamping it down, I can't offer a comparative view.... :D

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Re: espresso coffee

#471546

Postby mc2fool » January 9th, 2022, 1:59 pm

mc2fool wrote:
mutantpoodle wrote:so far am unable to discern a difference, but...does anyone have a view on this please?

It's actually called a moka. It's the method I use to make coffee and I was first taught how to use it by Italians, in Italy, and I've watched numerous of the same use one, and the instruction always is to just smooth over the coffee. However, as I've always done that and never tried tamping it down, I can't offer a comparative view.... :D

Update: just tried it tamping down ... well, with the back of a teaspoon at least ... at first thought it was a little smoother, but not convinced that wasn't just my imagination. I guess we'd need to buy a second moka and do a side-by-side test. ;)

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Re: espresso coffee

#471668

Postby mutantpoodle » January 10th, 2022, 8:37 am

quote
Some are easily pleased with pedestrian products,...uq

me..pedestrian??

I used to be , but no longer that fast!

many thanks everyone for the views and oopinions, I shall experiment with choices offered.

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Re: espresso coffee

#471679

Postby DrFfybes » January 10th, 2022, 9:08 am

I've had those in the past, I like the ritual of making the coffee, but in the new place it didn't fit on the gas hob. I'm not a great fan of cleaning cafetieres but have been using one recently, then clearing mum's flat out the other month I made a discovery.

Hiding in a kichen cupboard behind half a bottle of congealed Baileys was a percolator. Not just any percolator, but THE percolator, the one that only used to come out every Xmas day. A quick check of the plug terminals, some gentle teasing of the mains cable that had lain coiled up inside since about 1990, and I plugged it in.

The familiar splshshshsh-thunk noise brought back memories, memories of wine glasses of coffee (sometimes with a drop of Drambuie in) and various levels of success at floating cream on top , selection boxes and chocolate oranges, overboiled sprouts and having to sit through the Queen's speech before pudding, playing cribbage with grandpa, building lego.

We went to my nieces for Xmas this year. Yhey have a semi pro machine built in that you put beans in one end and get coffee out of the other.

It tasted fine, but it wasn't the same. I should have taken the persolator with me.

Paul

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Re: espresso coffee

#471683

Postby Mike4 » January 10th, 2022, 9:18 am

DrFfybes wrote: I should have taken the persolator with me.

Paul


A missed opportunity indeed! Next year perhaps then....

Mind you, I've always been mystified by coffee persolators. Percolators too. What IS it they are doing!!

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Re: espresso coffee

#471729

Postby mc2fool » January 10th, 2022, 11:44 am

Mike4 wrote:
DrFfybes wrote: I should have taken the persolator with me.

Paul


A missed opportunity indeed! Next year perhaps then....

Mind you, I've always been mystified by coffee persolators. Percolators too. What IS it they are doing!!

They repeatedly cycle boiling water (which gradually becomes boiling coffee) through the coffee grounds.
Image
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coffee_percolator

As opposed to a moka, which is basically an Italian steam engine. :D
Image
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moka_pot

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Re: espresso coffee

#471750

Postby GrahamPlatt » January 10th, 2022, 1:01 pm

I received a Krups bean to cup machine for Christmas. Having used pretty much every sort of coffee maker (save the Aeropress), this is the best. Effortless and excellent coffee.

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Re: espresso coffee

#471921

Postby AF62 » January 11th, 2022, 5:40 am

Mike4 wrote:This may sound a bit Philistine, but I too like espresso and my £69 Nescafé "Dolce Gusto" coffee pod machine makes a pretty close proxy from their "Americano Intenso" pods.


Completely agree. After trying various coffee makers over the years, the Nespresso machine I now have delivers a perfectly acceptable coffee within 30 seconds with no cleaning up afterwards. And I am no George Clooney.

Sure ‘real’ coffee is probably cheaper than the pods, but frankly life is too short to mess around.

When I visit a friend who has a vastly complex and horribly expensive coffee maker it seems to take forever for coffee to appear - and the end result is no better.

Mike4 wrote:Discussing coffee is a bit like discussing hi-fi with people. Some are easily pleased with pedestrian products, others are far more picky than me. I'm picky but more easily pleased than some, so it might be worth finding someone with a Nescafé machine and investing in a box of that exact pod. I think you might find it ok.


In non-COVID times you could just go to one of the Nespresso shops or in store displays and they would offer you whichever coffee from their wide range to taste. A quick, easy, and free way to see if the coffee the machines produce is acceptable to you.

Mike4 wrote:The big problem though is what to do with the pods. Are they recyclable or should they go in the bin? Oddly I was planning to look this up today!


Nespresso ones are. They will send you a bag to fill and then send back to them (https://www.nespresso.com/uk/en/recycling).

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Re: espresso coffee

#471922

Postby servodude » January 11th, 2022, 5:51 am

AF62 wrote:
Mike4 wrote:The big problem though is what to do with the pods. Are they recyclable or should they go in the bin? Oddly I was planning to look this up today!


Nespresso ones are. They will send you a bag to fill and then send back to them (https://www.nespresso.com/uk/en/recycling).


I believe THAT problem can be solved with: https://onepod.com.au/

I don't know if they're available elsewhere but I stayed in an Airbnb a while back that had them for the Aldi machine there
and I made a mental note to consider them when my moka died
- and forgot and replaced my moka

-sd

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Re: espresso coffee

#471961

Postby DrFfybes » January 11th, 2022, 10:27 am

servodude wrote:
AF62 wrote:
Mike4 wrote:The big problem though is what to do with the pods. Are they recyclable or should they go in the bin? Oddly I was planning to look this up today!


Nespresso ones are. They will send you a bag to fill and then send back to them (https://www.nespresso.com/uk/en/recycling).


I believe THAT problem can be solved with: https://onepod.com.au/

I don't know if they're available elsewhere but I stayed in an Airbnb a while back that had them for the Aldi machine there
and I made a mental note to consider them when my moka died
- and forgot and replaced my moka

-sd


I hope you removed the handle and recycled the old one :)

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Re: espresso coffee

#471964

Postby servodude » January 11th, 2022, 10:44 am

DrFfybes wrote:
servodude wrote:
AF62 wrote:
Mike4 wrote:The big problem though is what to do with the pods. Are they recyclable or should they go in the bin? Oddly I was planning to look this up today!


Nespresso ones are. They will send you a bag to fill and then send back to them (https://www.nespresso.com/uk/en/recycling).


I believe THAT problem can be solved with: https://onepod.com.au/

I don't know if they're available elsewhere but I stayed in an Airbnb a while back that had them for the Aldi machine there
and I made a mental note to consider them when my moka died
- and forgot and replaced my moka

-sd


I hope you removed the handle and recycled the old one :)


There was no need to remove the handle - that's what finally killed it (though the basket had holes in the wrong place too)

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Re: espresso coffee

#473092

Postby redsturgeon » January 14th, 2022, 3:35 pm

OK I know I am right at the nerdy end of the coffee spectrum but here goes.

First thing, if you want decent coffee, do not put steam through it. Coffee machines that use steam in the brewing process merely use the steam to provide pressure to push the hot water through the grounds. Note I said hot, not boiling water, ideally at around 90c otherwise you scorch the coffee and get unwanted flavours.

Also about 9 bar is the correct pressure to use, 15 bar is way too high and would push the water through the ground far too quickly leading to under extraction and a sour flavour.

Recipes vary for different types of coffee but generally for a decent cup using an espresso machine you should aim for for twice the weight of output from the weight of coffee used. eg. 20 grams of coffee should be brewed to produce 40 grams of espresso. Also the grind should be fine enough that the water is forced through in around 30 seconds at 9 bar. This gives your standard double espresso shot which can then be used as the basis for any espresso based coffee drink.

If you like milk, that is where the steam is used, to aerate and warm the milk that can then be added to provide the texture and taste required.

Using a moka cannot achieve these parameters but if it produces coffee that you enjoy then why not?

HTH

John

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Re: espresso coffee

#473234

Postby mutantpoodle » January 15th, 2022, 8:48 am

excellent and so many views and ideas
many thanks everyone

I think what I shall do is buy a new machine
one that is able to use the 'ALDI' type pods as well as the more costly own brand ones
the ALDI pods seem to have very good reviews

but in going to review sites its not at all clear which Dolce Gusto machines takes all pods

and most references here do not offer model details...just the name Dolce gusto

in doing this I shall be able to have qquick easy pod coffee as well as continuing with my Mocka!

any definite recs for the new machine?.......not crazy money


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