How To Make The Perfect Espresso

How To Make The Perfect Espresso

If like me you are a bit of a coffee fanatic and have wanted to recreate a barista style espresso in the comfort of your own home but unsure how to do so, then look no further as I divulge all the secrets on how to make the perfect espresso without the aid of a machine.

There are three easy methods for how to make an espresso without an espresso maker:

1) The Moka Pot

Aluminium Antique Moka Espresso Pot

This small but handy utensil is an ideal addition to any coffee fans kitchen, particularly admired for its ability to produce a viscous, dense espresso with little more than steam pressure.

What you will need: Moka pot, ground coffee, stove

Step 1: Fill the bottom half of your Moka pot with cold water up to the level of the level of the relief valve on the side.

Step 2: Place the filter basket into the base and fill with ground coffee, and give it a gentle shake to settle the grounds evenly. Do not pack the espresso down as this could possibly clog the filter.

Step 3: Make sure the filter is in place and no grounds are on the outside rim (wipe off if needs be) and screw the top of the Moka pot onto the base.

Step 4: Place the pot over a low flame as this will increase the brew time which enhances the flavour. When the water in the bottom chamber starts to boil you will hear a 'hissing' noise, when the noise gets louder take the pot off the stove

2) The Aeropress


The Aeropress has become a big hit in the coffee world due to the fact that it is cheap, easy to use, easy to clean and it makes a shot of espresso that although lacking in texture is similar in flavour to an espresso machine equivalent.

What you will need: Aeropress, 2 filter papers, 17-21g coffee grinds, kettle, coffee scale (optional) 

Step 1: Fill your kettle with water and bring to a temperature in the range of 94-98ºC (close to boiling point)Rinse one of the paper filters with a little warm water and place into the filter cap. Insert the plunger about halfway into the brewing chamber.

Step 2: While the kettle cools, rinse one of the paper filters with a little warm water and place into the filter cap. Insert the plunger about halfway into the brewing chamber and then pour the coffee grounds into the Aeropress chamber.

Step 3: Slowly pour in the hot water to just above the chamber marked with '2'

Step 4: Place the chamber on your cup/mug and push the plunger down into the coffee grounds as far as it will go.

3) The French Press/Cafetiere 

rustic French press espresso

The French press or Cafetiere is one of the most commonly owned coffee materials, however should be used as the last-resort option for making an espresso without a machine as it lacks the concentrated richness provided in the previous methods.

What you will need: French press, coffee grounds, kettle

Step 1: Add to heaped tablespoons of coffee grinds to the bottom of the press.

Step 2: Boil the water and add a 'splash' of hot water to the bottom of the press (this blooms the coffee) and let the grounds soak for 30 seconds.

Step 3: Fill the French press with the rest of the water to about half way or enough to fill your espresso cup twice.

Step 4: Close the lid. Let the mixture steep for approximately 3 minutes and then push the plunger down.  

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  • Nick Robinson
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