How To Use An Espresso Machine: Espresso is a favorite drink of many coffee lovers all around the world, myself included. Espresso is served in a small cup and yet it has the same amount of caffeine as a standard cup of coffee. Most usually, milk gets added into espresso to offset the bitterness, giving us a fantastic bitter-sweet beverage. Whether you’re looking to include this magical drink to your cafes menu, or you want to buy an espresso machine for your home, you need to learn how to use an espresso machine. Keep in mind, everyone can make espresso, but not everyone can make an espresso that tastes like a little piece of heaven.
How To Use An Espresso Machine
An espresso machine is not easy to use. First, you must take care of preparations, then you have to grind your coffee beans. After that, you will need to measure and put your ground beans into a portafilter. Tamp the grounds by pressing down, making sure that the ground coffee is evenly distributed. Set up your machine, pull your shot, and wait for 20 seconds. Once the espresso is ready, it’s time to steam your milk and pour it over the espresso.
Of course, all of this sounds way too complicated if you don’t know how to use an espresso machine. Don’t get discouraged; We’ve broken everything down into a few easy steps. If you follow these steps carefully and you practice, you will learn how to make a perfect cup of espresso.
To make an espresso, you will need a machine, coffee beans, and milk. Make sure to have them ready beforehand and make sure to clean the espresso machine as well as the portafilter before you make the perfect cup of espresso.
Turn on and preheat the espresso. Allow it to run, preheat, for about 20 minutes before you get started, the espresso machine needs to be warmed up in advance.
Grind Coffee Beans
Take the coffee beans you’ve prepared beforehand and put them into a grinder preset to fine grind size. Place the ground coffee into a portafilter, but don’t use too much or too little. To get the right amount of coffee, take a look at the manufacturer’s recommendations. Every espresso machine is different and some portafilters are smaller or larger. The first time you make espresso, carefully measure your ground beans. You can experiment with the amount of coffee you put into the portafilter once you learn how to use an espresso machine.
Your portafilter basket might be overflowing with ground coffee. In that cause, “shave” off any access coffee so that your portafilter is smooth with the ground coffee. The coffee must be evenly spread out before we advance to the next step.
Tamp The Ground Coffee
Before tamping, our ground must be evenly distributed. To do that, tap the side of the portafilter slightly with your hand. Once your coffee looks evenly distributed, take the temp and make sure to press it straight down. Until the ground sets into the portafilter, don’t be afraid to put a bit of pressure into tamping.
There is a whole science behind tamping, so don’t worry if you don’t get it right the first time. As you continue to use an espresso machine, you will get better at tamping; Practice makes perfect! Write down how much pressure you put into tamping every time you make an espresso until you find the sweet spot.
After tamping, there are usually excess grounds at the top of the portafilter, brush them off and you’re ready to continue to the next step!
Brew the espresso
Now that we have our ground coffee nicely set into the portafilter, it’s time to brew! Start by re-attaching the portafilter to the head of the machine. Immediately begin brewing the coffee into a cup and leave it for about 20 seconds. Keep an eye out on the brew just in case, and wait until you get the desired volume.
Steam the Milk
To steam, the milk, pour it into the steel tank that comes with the espresso machine. Take the steam wand and put the tip below the surface of the milk. Steam the coffee until it starts to get hot.
To get the perfect “espresso milk,” make sure to hold the tip just below the surface level. As you’re holding the steam wand, whirl it around inside the milk tank until you reach the desired result. Practice until you get the right consistency as well as the right temperature. You don’t want your milk to taste burnt, but you don’t want it to be cold either. If the milk is not steamed enough, the foam will breakdown.
Now that the milk is steamed, take a spoon full and pour it over the previously brewed espresso.
Enjoy your espresso
You have learned how to use an espresso machine and you’ve made your first espresso, it’s time to give it a taste. If your espresso tastes good, congratulations, you’ve followed every step carefully and learned how to make a great espresso. Although, if your espresso tastes a bit off, don’t get discouraged. It takes years of practice to create the perfect espresso consistently, try to learn from your mistakes, and try again later.
Here are a few pointers on how to make the perfect cup of espresso:
- Measure your coffee. Consistency is the key to mastering espresso. Experiment and find the exact amount of coffee you need to make an exceptional espresso.
- Grinding your coffee not only adds to the experience, but it also makes your espresso taste that much better. Grinding your beans just before you make espresso really brings out the flavor.
- Tamping is an art form. Maybe the most crucial step to making a magical espresso. Practice makes perfect and a perfect tamp will bring out the flavor that much more. Evenly distributed coffee in portafilter results in inconsistent extraction.
Practice steaming your milk. Milk can either make or ruin an espresso. Too hot and your espresso tastes burnt. Too cold and the consistency starts to fall apart.