How to Make Coffee with a Bialetti Mini Express

The Bialetti Mini Express is an all-aluminium espresso maker – also referred to as a moka pot or stovetop percolator. 

Bialetti Mini Express 2 cup version 

The mini express is well designed to make 2 espresso-style coffees from one brew, straight into your cups, sitting on the cup rests. It is the ideal moka pot to make strong coffee’s and it can easily be taken on the road or camping because of its compact size. 

They are compatible with gas or electric stovetops, and they work well on combination with the required set up, as well as on a jet boil camping stove. 

First, fill up the heating vessel with water. It’s best to use preheated water to fill the vessel as this will speed up the brewing time. Fill the vessel just below the pressure release valve; this gives you at least 100ml of water. 

Next, weigh out your beans. To make it easier, use the filter basket to do this – weigh them full of beans and it will give a consistent measurement every time. 

If you are using scales to weigh your beans, the basket holds approximately 16g of coffee. You want to grind your coffee to a fine grind - nothing too coarse as your espresso’s won’t be strong enough. 

Place the grounds in a filter basket and give them a very gentle tamping, nothing too hard.  

The filter basket is shaped like a funnel and sits inside the heating vessel. This straw-like shape is where the water travels up under pressure through the bed of coffee. Place your filter basket into the heating vessel and screw on the coffee collector on top. 

Don’t forget to place your cups under the spout before turning the stove to a low to medium heat. You don’t want your water to boil too fast as this will naturally burn your coffee. Aim for a heat that lets the pressure gradually rise, allowing your water to slowly percolate through the bed of coffee.  

It should take a total of 5 minutes to complete a brew; it will start slow, but it will speed up at the end. You’ll know it’s done when the coffee starts spurting out. 

Turn off the heat and remove the espresso’s from the cup rest once it’s finished. Enjoy your coffee straight black, add a dash of hot water or your favourite steamed up milk. 

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