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Treat yourself with a cup of hot and frothy latte – not the one from a coffee shop, but the one you made yourself. Do you know you can still create a luscious cap of foam over your latte even without an espresso machine? All this brings us to a question – how to make a latte?
It’s all about espresso and foamed milk:
Prepare a single or double espresso, steam some milk, pour it over the espresso from a relatively high position and add a tiny bit of milk foam – your caffe latte is ready!
In the paragraphs below, we are shedding the light on the preparation of latte as well as giving you some fascinating facts about one of the top 3 espresso-based beverages.
Table of Contents
Let’s Talk Terms – Latte 101
First, we want to clear up some of the most common misconceptions when it comes to popular coffee terms:
- Latte is made of espresso/strongly brewed coffee, steamed milk and topped with milk foam.
- Although quite similar, cappuccino contains more foam than steamed milk.
- Macchiato comes with a little cap of milk foam on top and doesn’t include steamed milk.
- Café au lait, just like its name suggests, contains coffee (espresso) and milk, but no foam.
Keep in mind that the different coffee, milk, and foam ratios are crucial here.
However, there are a couple more differences between a latte and the other aforementioned coffee beverages.
What Is The Difference Between Latte and Cappuccino?
The main difference between latte and cappuccino is in the amount of steamed milk and milk foam used.
Cappuccino boasts less steamed milk and more milk foam, while caffe latte does the opposite.
In essence, cappuccino is also thicker when it comes to texture due to the extra foam.
On the other hand, latte features less foam and is way smoother to gulp.
And then, we have the latte versus Mocha debate.
The main difference between Mocha and latte is that Mocha is sprinkled with chocolate and relies on steamed milk a lot more than latte does.
And while you can make your favorite beverage as per your own preference in the privacy of your own home, remember that there’s a huge difference when ordering at a coffee shop.
How to Make Caffe Latte at Home Without Espresso Machine?
You will need:
- A wide, 170-220ml glass
- A jar
- (Optional) Cocoa powder, vanilla or almond extract, syrup – whichever you prefer
Now that you have everything you need, follow these steps:
- Brew a strong cup of espresso and fill 1/3 of a glass with it. A Nespresso capsule will do too or even regular (but still strongly brewed) coffee.
- Fill the jar with milk halfway, then seal the lid. Shake the jar for 30 to 60 seconds as fast and hard as you can to create a real tornado in it that’ll froth the milk.
- Open the jar and put it uncovered in a microwave for 30 additional seconds. You will notice the foam rising, while the heat will help to keep it in place.
- Take your cup and pour warm milk (wait for about 30 seconds after taking the jar out of the microwave) over espresso from a distance. Watch out for the foam as you pour.
- The milk will hit the bottom of the glass and mix with the espresso if you pour foam at the right height. Continue pouring then top the content up with the foam.
- Garnish with syrup, cocoa powder, or vanilla if you want to (optional)
There you go – making a latte without an espresso machine is a breeze.
However, you can save tons of time each year if you would just buy a basic espresso machine .
Splashing a couple of hundreds on a coffee machine that comes with a separate boiler for the coffee and a separate boiler for the steam would skyrocket (and speed up) your latte experience.
The machine makes it easy to switch from espresso-making to texturing.
Basically, you can forget about having to deal with inconsistent foam ever again.
Selecting the Best Milk for Latte
Depending on the quality of the milk used for latte, you will either create the flawless layers of color on top of your cup or something that would disappear even before the first sip.
Just like the type of coffee beans, the type of milk you are using can affect both the way your coffee tastes and its appearance.
Beware of blue, green, and red tops when buying milk.
The best milk for latte is the one that boasts high levels of butter fan, protein and sugar.
Whole milk creates a creamier and thicker foam in comparison to skimmed milk that gives a foamy, airy and bubbly structure.
Keep in mind that using milk with higher fat content results in stable and consistent foam.
Also, the different types of milk may work better or worse with different steaming temperatures.
And the ideal temperature of the milk is about 4° and it should be introduced to a vapor temperature of 121-124°.
These are the ideal proportions for a perfectly steamed latte if you are using fatty and sugary milk.
Interesting Facts about Latte
- Don’t get surprised if you get your latte served in a bowl
- Latte is one of the most suitable coffee-based drinks for creating stunning patterns and shapes on the top of the coffee. This trend is increasingly common in Europe and the United States
- In Asia, you can order some of the famous Asian teas combined with a latte
- The African red latte contains rooibos tea
- The iced latte is never stirred so that you get a layer of white milk and a level of floating coffee on top of it
- Vegans and lactose-intolerant people can still enjoy a latte by using soy milk and oat milk foam
- Fun fact – more than 67 million lattes were sold in 2018
Caffe latte is one of the most popular espresso-based drinks thanks to its creamy and subtle flavor and texture profile.
This morning type of beverage is relatively easy to make, no doubt.
But you should still be familiar with the finesse of using the pouring angle, as well as steaming and foaming the milk.
What’s your fav type of latte?
Regular, garnished, iced?
Leave your comments in the section below!
Last update on 2021-01-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API