Somewhere in the dark depths of your kitchen is that Greca your mami / abuela / tia sent with you when you left home. And then you got a coffee maker and forgot all about it. The thing is, that Mr. Coffee will never make cafe as good as yout grandmother. So maybe there's something to this stovetop coffee maker? We're finally digging ours out and putting it to use. Here's a step by step guide.
Step 1: Unscrew the Greca.
First things first: take your Greca apart. You should have three parts: the bottom chamber, the filter, and the top half. Make sure it's clean and then fill the bottom chamber with water. Some say you should boil the water first so your coffee grounds don't "cook" on the stovetop. Our abuela didn't do it so we're not either. (But if you do, let us know if it makes a difference!)
Step 2: Fill with filter with coffee.
Next up, add your coffee to the shallow filter. There's some debate here on what kind of coffee to use. We've found that a standard drip-grind (or finer), works well. The biggest difference is how much you add. If you pack in the coffee and tap it down, you're heading for an espresso. If you spoon it in and level it off, drip coffee. We strike a balance for a strong cup.
Step 3: Screw your Greca back together and put it on the stove.
We know it seems obvious but remember to firmly screw your Greca back into place. If you don't, once the water starts boiling and percolating up, you'll have watery warm coffee-like water all over. So make sure it's on tight and then put your Greca on the stove, over low to medium heat. You don't want to burn your coffee but the water has to boil up. And then don't touch it! Don't lift the lid to check on progress, you'll able to smell when it's done.
Step 4: Enjoy (and clean up).
In about 10 minutes you should have a strong, hot cup of coffee to get you through the day. Then let your Greca cool down completely, rinse it out, and let it air dry.