How to Make Espresso at Home
What Is Espresso?
How Much Caffeine Is in Espresso?
Best Coffee Beans for Espresso
There's actually no such thing as an espresso bean. Any coffee can be brewed as espresso, but there are coffee blends specifically formulated for espresso that taste best as espresso drinks.
That said, although some cafes have started offering single-origin espresso shots, by and large espresso is made with blends specifically designed for espresso. What matters most, from the point of view of the barista, is how the beans are ground. While drip coffee is best when the beans are a medium grind (about the size of sea salt), for espresso, the beans need to be finely ground and the consistency of the grind is essential.
How to Make Espresso at Home
Because of the pressure required, espresso requires specialized equipment. Starting out, you need an espresso machine that can get up to pressure and produce consistent hot water, as well as a grinder that's going to produce consistent finely ground coffee. In the espresso world, our magic word is consistency. A great burr grinder is going to be the most consistent source of even finely ground coffee. Making a great shot of espresso requires an initial commitment, but once you put in the time and the practice, it's immensely rewarding to pour your first great-tasting shot.
Best Espresso Recipe and Ratios
How to Make Espresso Without a Machine
While you can't make a bona fide espresso without pressure from a machine, you can get close(ish) to the real deal with one of these methods:
How to Make Espresso With a French Press
Making espresso with a French press basically means making less coffee. Here's what you do: Boil one cup of water. While you wait for the water to heat up, add two tablespoons of freshly, finely ground coffee to your French press. Add a bit of the boiling water to the French press and stir briefly. Wait four minutes, then slowly push down the plunger, pausing every few seconds. Note that it'll be slightly challenging to push the plunger down due to the grind size.
How to Make Espresso With an AeroPress
The same goes for an AeroPress; using your normal brew method for the AeroPress, prepare less coffee using a fine grind. If able, heat your water in a kettle to 205 to 210 degrees Fahrenheit (the optimal temperature for espresso in an AeroPress, as well as a French press).
Types of Espresso Drinks
If you’ve ever stared slack-jawed at the coffee shop menu wondering what the difference was between all the espresso drinks, you're in good company! Here's an overview of the different types of espresso drinks:
- Single Shot: Simple and delicious.
- Double Shot: This is the most common shot, as most baristas pull double shots and dump out half if someone orders a single.
- Americano: Water poured over espresso. Think of it as a more intense cup of drip coffee.
- Macchiato: Espresso with steamed milk foam. Surprised that it’s not a caramel-infused sugar bomb? It’s cool if you like that, too, but that's not a traditional macchiato.
- Cappuccino: This is equal parts espresso, steamed milk, and foamed milk.
- Flat White: Espresso with microfoam poured over it. Microfoam is steamed milk filled with small, fine bubbles that give it an ultra smooth consistency. Yes, it’s different from a latte.
- Mocha: Delicious, and not overly sweet.
- Latte: Espresso with lots of steamed milk and very little foam.
- Ristretto: A concentrated shot of espresso, for when you don’t want to blink for a few hours or commit to anything longer than a sip. After all, you’ve got places to be and things to do.
What Is Blonde Espresso?
Blonde espresso, popularized by Starbucks, is simply an espresso made with light roast coffee as opposed to a traditional espresso, which uses medium or dark beans.
What Is Espresso Powder?
Some baking recipes call for espresso powder, which is made from darkly roasted, finely-ground coffee beans. You can buy espresso powder at the supermarket or make it on your own at home. It's not meant to be used to make an actual espresso, however.
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☕️ We are a local family-run business located in the heart of Clear Lake, Iowa.
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We would give you more reasons, but rather than reading it's better if you visit our website, purchase a bag or two, and experience a unique caffeinated or half-caff journey for yourself 😊!
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