A perfect cappuccino drink has both a shot of espresso and simple foamed milk. What makes it different is that the light foam sits directly on top of the espresso shot and does not mix with the coffee drink at all. The two elements complement each other, but do not mix until they hit the drinker’s tongue.
The foundation of a great cup of cappuccino is a great shot (or two) of espresso. Pulling a shot refers to the process of making a shot of espresso from grinding the beans to serving the shot of espresso. To pull a shot, follow these steps:
- Grind the espresso beans. Grind just enough beans for just one drink in order to ensure that your espresso always tastes its freshest.
- Dose the grounds. This is the process of pouring the ground beans into the portafilter.
- Tamp the grounds. Use a tamper to create a perfectly packet pellet of espresso grounds.
- Extract the shot. Insert the portafilter into the espresso machine and allow water to run through the tamped ground and into a waiting espresso cup.
Perfectly foamed milk makes up the second part of a cappuccino drink and can be somewhat tricky to get right. Use these step to get a pitcher of foamed milk:
- Pour the milk. Fill the frothing pitcher about one-third of the way full.
- Insert the steam wand. Put the steam wand just below the surface of the milk and turn it on. If the milk is hissing, it is foaming properly.
- Steam the milk for a few seconds. Foaming will expand the milk, but it will not heat it as much as steaming, so dip the steam wand further into the milk to steam it and heat it up.
Use brightly colored cappuccino cups to serve your drinks in style.
This is the final step and requires a steady and gentle hand to pour both parts of this drink. Follow these steps to get a perfect cappuccino every time.
- Pour the espresso. Pour the shot of espresso into a latte cup making certain that the pour is at an even pace the entire time so that the milk does not mix with the espresso.
- Pour the milk. The foamed milk is extremely light, but just plopping the milk into the espresso will result in the mixing of the two ingredients, which is undesirable. Hold the pitcher at about a 50 degree angle and slowly and steadily shake the pitcher in a soft, horizontal motion. Allow the milk to come out in small dollops until the cup is full.
- Garnish the drink. Some customers like a little extra spice to their drink. Choose a spice like cinnamon or nutmeg and sprinkle a little on top of the foam.
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