If you’re one of those people who live for latte coffee, then who would better know the importance of a great cup of morning coffee than you? Coffee started as a beverage and went on to become one of the most popular drinks in the world. And this made coffee more than just a drink, it became a delicacy. With this, people around the world strived to achieve better and richer coffee. And in the process, we became equipped with coffee making techniques through which we can now create barista level coffee at home.
This detailed guide will help you make the perfect morning latte at home to kick start your day. Not only will you be able to make the perfect latte, but you will also be able to differentiate between a good and great latte. Which is essential for coffee lovers who should know what they are drinking.
What Makes a Great Latte?
Now if you’re wondering what separates a good latte from a great latte, it’s the way it’s made. To understand how to make a great latte, you need to understand what a latte is. A Latte also called a Café Latte, are two-thirds milk and one-third espresso. It is milkier than your average cappuccino and therefore slightly less strong as well. A great latte is one that gets the milk and the coffee just right, in terms of preparing and mixing. In this guide, I will be covering methods for creating the perfect latte with and without a coffee machine.
1.Choosing the Right Milk
Since a latte is a two-thirds milk, getting the milk right is of absolute importance and conversely. Not getting the milk right ruins the whole cup altogether. As a rule of thumb, whole milk has the right amount of fat ratio and it gives some amazing froth on your coffee. Alternatively, you may be tempted to use nonfat or 2% fat milk. The rest assured, no milk steams better than whole milk to create a latte. Therefore, you want to choose whole milk to start with but that still may not end the milk problem, instead, it gives rise to a new problem: Which whole milk should you buy? Depending on the type of cow and its diet, the milk could vary quite a lot. As a solution, you want to try several brands and narrow down the ones that help you achieve a great froth. What is a great froth? It comes with a smooth microfoam and isn’t increasingly foamy or creamy to the point that it feels like too much. That’s the texture you’re looking for.
2.Prepping the Milk
Once you have the right milk, you want to froth it. There are several methods for getting the right froth on milk. You want to start with warming the milk. This can be done using a microwave or on the stove. You don’t want to boil the milk, rather you simply want to get a few bubbles on the top. Once the milk gets lukewarm, you proceed to froth the milk. I generally prefer the stove because it lets you see when you want to stop heating the milk. But a microwave can work just as well, as long as you don’t overheat the milk.
To froth the milk, you can whisk it with your hand or with an electric mixer. You may also use a frothing wand. If you don’t want to use any of these methods, the simplest method is to lock the milk tightly in a jar and shake it vigorously. Although this method suffices for making a cup of latte. It does not give you microfoam so you may want to go the extra milk and froth it properly. Another simpler method for frothing milk is to run it in the blender for a couple of seconds, I find this to be the most effective and easiest method if you do not have a frothing machine at home.
3.Making an Espresso
Now you need to make a cup of espresso which will constitute one-third of your latte. Espresso is different from American coffee because it’s much stronger and helps get a more refined taste when consumed with milk, which is the case with the latte. If you have an espresso machine at home, this bit should be fairly easy for you, you just need to brew a single shot of espresso. If you don’t have an espresso machine at home, there are several ways you can obtain similar results. The idea is simply that you want really strong black coffee.
Usually, an AeroPress gets the job done most easily. However, you may also use a French press or a pour-over setup, but this method will take at least 4 minutes for the coffee grounds to infuse with the water. In either case, doing this right will give you black coffee that is almost strong enough to be the espresso to your latte.
The final step is to mix your milk and espresso to get the latte. To start with, you may want to preheat the container (your cup) so your coffee doesn’t get cold too fast. Once done, you first want to fill one-third of your cup with the espresso you just made. Then start pouring your milk slowly from the edge of the cup and try to hold the milk foam back with a spoon or a sieve. Once you’ve filled the remaining two-thirds of your cup with milk, pour the foam as a top layer to the coffee. And you’re done! Doing this a couple of times will help you do this faster and get better flavour so keep going and perfecting your morning latte as you go.