Most Italian households have some version of the moka pot. While it is very easy to use, there are some tricks that can bring your Italian coffee to the next level. The good people over at Yuppiechef.com have written a wonderful step-by-step guide that says it all (with pictures!):
Yes…ok, no, but you will love it.
It’s the Bialetti Pasta Pot, and it can be found for under 30 bucks at most stores that carry housewares. Bialetti is the company that makes the Moka Express stovetop espresso maker. You know, the one that was always sitting on Nonna’s stove. If you don’t have one, then shame on you. It’s an essential item in all Italian kitchens.
For starters, the Pasta Pot has a locking lid with a built in strainer. The handles are heat resistant, so you don’t need pot holders when draining the pasta, and they are set far enough from the pot that the heat from the steam won’t burn your hands. At 5 quarts it’s the perfect size, and it comes in a variety of colors. It has an oval design, so you don’t have to break long spaghetti. The pot has a non-stick surface, so once your pasta is finished cooking and drained, you can add your sauce directly to the pot of pasta and not worry about messy cleanup.
There’s an entertaining video about the pot featuring Top Chef’s Fabio Vivianni on Bed Bath & Beyond’s website. Check it out.