Saturday, August 23, 2008

Let’s know first about Espresso. It is a coffee beverage, prepared using water under pressure and served in a pre-heated demitasse (French for a small cup or literally “half cup”) cup, it has about 60-90 ml capacity which is usually made of white pottery or porcelain with matching saucer. Traditionally, it is prepared by highly skilled professional or in English jargon “barista” refers to one who has acquired some level of expertise in the preparation of espresso-based coffee drinks, barista is Italian for bartender. This originates in Milan, Italy in the early 20th century, but until the mid-1940’s it was solely produced with steam pressure. This type of coffee beverage include a thicker consistency than a drip coffee, more concentrated that is why it is measured in shots or producing one is called “pulling a shot”.

Making a cup of espresso is a difficult process that takes practice and an attention to detail. It consists of a number of elements that experts comprise at least forty steps. However, most of the steps are out of hand such as, how beans were grown, when they are picked and how they were processed. So, for the steps which we have control over with are choosing the right bean, grounding properly the bean, preparing the machine for brewing, quality of water and time, with the very important element the barista! Now onto the process, first pour water on the machine, high-quality espresso machines have control over the temperature of the brew water within a few degrees than the ordinary, it should be 190 to 196 degrees Fahrenheit, once the water is in the right temperature the light on the machine will turn off. Next, turn the dosage button and let the water pour through the handle for 10 seconds, to clean it through and heat it as the same temperature as the water, the handle where you put the coffee is called the group handle. Add the grounded coffee on the handle, for single shots add 7 -10 grams and double would be 12-18 grams. Make sure the coffee is properly tamped in the handle, applied evenly and rotationally. Attached the group handle to the espresso machine and put the cups underneath and let it pour out. It will produce a rich or thick, syrupy and not at all water. It should start very dark brown colour and ends with a caramel colour but should still retain its richness and the dark rusty coloured, reddish brown foam floating on top is the crema. And your espresso is ready to go!


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