Don’t you ever feel that someone is inventing all the different types of coffee by the day? There are countless choices when it comes to preparing the perfect cup of coffee, from black coffee to a double espresso.
However, when it comes to perfect foam and flavor, there is hardly anything better than a cappuccino. Although the most basic form of a cappuccino is well known to everyone (a double espresso coupled with a layer of steamed milk foam), there are several tips and tricks on how to make the perfect cup of cappuccino.
Knowing all the facts
Before you are ready to make a perfect cappuccino in the home environment you should know a thing or two about its origins; after all, you can love this wonderful drink only if you get to know it well. If you’ve heard of the beer brand “Kapuziner,” then you’ll easily understand how the coffee in question appeared in Vienna in the 1700s.
The espresso-based drink included cream, sugar, and certain spices at first but the modern cappuccino was made in Italy in the 20th century. The cappuccino has to thank its popularity and world-renown to the espresso machine that every restaurant, coffee shop, and bar across the globe have.
Finally, have you ever considered why is a cappuccino named as such? Well, the hot drink shares its etymology with the beer. Namely, it is a reference to the shade of brown robe Capuchin friars wore in 16th century Italy.
Milk of the right texture
Instead of ordering a cappuccino in a bar or a café, you might want to create the perfect cup back at home. This is possible if you have the right ingredients and the technique to mix them all together. When it comes to the milk, you can use every kind, from skim to soy, rice or coconut milk, to make a cappuccino but be aware that whole milk accounts for the richest foam.
A far as the quantity of the milk is concerned, pour 1/3 of a jug. The amount might seem excessive but keep in mind that a good portion of the milk will be turned into a rich foam. In fact, the main difference between cappuccino and macchiato is in the foam, that a macchiato uses only a dot of milk to prepare.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that milk will overflow in a typical cappuccino but develop into a nice thick layer of foam. The jug you use to pour the milk in should be chilled as it results in creamier and smoother foam. The temperature of the milk you wish to achieve is around 70 degrees Centigrade, so well below boiling.
Using a coffee machine
After the milk is steamed and ready, it is time to use a coffee machine to make an espresso. You probably know this procedure that involves filling the filter with ground espresso coffee. If you want the cappuccino to be extra strong, then set the machine to a double espresso shot.
The magic of a cappuccino
Once you have the milk and the (double) espresso ready, it is time to create some cappuccino magic. Start by tapping the jug of steamed milk to remove large bubbles so only the smooth microfoam will remain. Before you actually pour the milk, swirl the jug a bit so as to prevent the foam and the milk from separating.
The cup you intend to pour the espresso in should be pre-warmed (you can take it straight from the dishwasher). Then you pour steamed milk into the cup that you hold tilted with one hand. The height that you pour from shouldn’t be great, despite what you might have seen baristas do. As the cup fills with hot milk, you slowly level off the cup and then serve the drink immediately.
There you go; these were the essential steps on how to prepare the perfect cup of cappuccino, spiced with some history of the hot beverage. Once you master this technique by repeating it hundreds, if not thousands of times, you might be ready to create those elaborate patterns coffee drinkers admire so much.
Looking for a few reasons why to drink coffee? Read our 5 reasons why you should drink coffee every day…