Making the perfect latte is relatively easy, but requires a bit of touch, experience and understanding. Many of the most common mistakes are not easily avoided unless you know what to do, and don’t do.
Naturally, you need to make a cup of espresso, but stop – prepare but don’t make your espresso until you are done with the most important part of a latte success – the milk.
For the perfect latte, you need steamed milk. Almost every espresso machines comes with a steam pipe to help you steam your milk for your latte or latte. There are a few other ways to steam/foam milk, but with the right knowledge your are best off by using the steam pipe.
So, the first trick in order to get the perfect milk foam for your latte is to know how long it takes for your espresso machine to heat a particular amount of milk to the right temperature. The second trick is knowing how to use the steam pipe when steaming the milk.
To steam milk, follow the following steps.
- When the espresso machine has reached the right temperature, turn on the steam to empty the water that sits in the pipe. When no water is coming out of the steam pipe, turn the steam off.
- Poor the right amount of milk into a stainless steel pitcher.
- Lower the nozzle under the milk surface and turn on the steam. Be careful not to raise the nozzle above the surface – this will give you large bubbles instead of the desired small ones.
- Slowly raise the nozzle to just under the surface. Again, be careful not to raise it above the surface of the milk!
- Keep steaming the milk until you have the right amount of foam and the pitcher is getting just a little to warm for your hand. If you have enough foam but the milk is a little to could, lower the nozzle deeper into the milk. This will heat the milk without creating any foam.
- When you are satisfied, turn off the steam and take the pipe out of the milk. Start making the espresso you prepared before steaming the milk and poor it into a cup and then add the right amount of steamed milk according to your taste.
A Latte is much tastier with espresso, but you can make it with a standard drip coffee maker anyway.