For reason unbeknownst to myself I've been developing this desire to explain how you do the "real" Coffee (as I see it). And here we are!
First of all, you need a "Moka" coffee pot, i.e. something like this thing:
How you do it, tricks and newbs mistakes included:
[Newb mistake] You don't get an aluminum pot. You get a stainless steel pot.
(Strangely enough, aluminum will oxidize and develop stains that will alter the flavour of your coffee: never go for aluminum, get the steel.)
- Use 100% Arabica coffee only.
[Trick] When you first purchase the pot, prepare your coffee (read the following), then throw it away. Wash (see #4), repeat and throw it away again. Drink from the third one on.
[Newb mistake] You never wash the pot with detergents. Fresh water only. Detergents would wipe away the coffee traces from the interior of the pot, and your coffee would develop an unpleasant metallic taste.
(Don't worry about "hygiene": your pot gets sterilized at every use - T = 100° C: no bacteria/virus can survive.)
[Trick] Don't wash the pot after each use, but just before each use.
- Start preparing your pot by washing it with fresh water. [Trick] Use cold water for the water tank (A).
- Fill the tank with [trick] cold (tap/fridge) water, to just below the level of the safety valve.
- Fill the filter (B) with grinded coffee. (Do not use soluble coffee for heaven's sake!)
[Newb mistake] Do not press the grinded coffee. You may gently shake the filter for the coffee to get evenly distributed.
- Screw the top (C) over the filter and tank, and close it tightly, without pushing on the handle.
[Trick] Put the pot on the smallest flame/heater of your kitchen cooker, and set it at the lowest possible intensity (you want your water to be heated slowly). You may try to experiment a bit with higher intensities, but never go with the highest ones (or your coffee will have a burnt taste).
- When the coffee will start filling the top you'll hear a distinct noise. You can turn off the cooker then, or wait a few moments, but anyway remove the coffee from the heat source before the boiling starts (boiled coffee is meh.)
[Trick] if your pot is large (over the size of 1-2 cups) stir the coffee to mix it well before pouring it out.
- If you don't plan to use the pot for a lot of time (20+ days) wash it (again with fresh water only). Repeat #4 before using it again.
I might have forgotten something obvious: in that case please point it out for me (Cerridwyn: thanks in advance for your inevitable "peer-review"... )
And now excuse me but I leave to have a cup of coffee...