When you take your time baking bread by hand, I bet it tastes way better than store-bought ones. Or when you decide to cook something delicious at home versus ordering takeout.
The same goes for when you spend your time brewing espresso. You’ve bought enough from your neighborhood’s coffee shop. Once you bring home a machine for the brewing, it is going to taste just as fancy and well-made as store bought ones. You just have to know how to make espresso with the machine by following some easy steps.
Here’s Everything on How to Make Espresso with an Espresso Machine
So how do you make espresso with an espresso machine since you’ve never done this before? Well, you barely need five minutes to make two cups of espresso coffee. But, since we are talking about aiming for a cup that’s no less quality-wise than the ones sold by baristas, let’s explain things in detail today.
Making great espressos requires consistency. The most important thing that people miss out on is not using a coffee scale. Knowing how much coffee to use every time will lead to a perfect brew. Another thing you must ensure when making espresso coffee is freshly grinding your beans right before use. Following these two tips will definitely up your espresso game!
Get These Things for The Process
1. Espresso maker
2. Milk Steamer
3. Kitchen Thermometer
5. Burr Grinder (If the Machine Does Not Have a Built-In)
6. Espresso Beans
Determining Your Ideally Chosen Roasts
Espresso does not mean the level of roast you use. However, the method in which you prepare and grind those beans does relate to it. Depending on your region, the roast levels can be different. So, you can try a few out and choose any roast level that seems enjoyable. Often the purpose becomes the main deciding factor of roast level.
Suppose you want to have your espresso straight for drinking. So, the beans of single-origin that are not darkly roasted will work best here. Now if you plan to turn the espresso into a cappuccino or latte, then the roast needs to be darker. This will allow it to stand up to the milk that you’ll be using.
That is why it’s very important to inquire when you’re buying the beans from a local coffee shop. You want to be aware of when the beans were roasted. Generally, it’s not a good idea to get beans that were roasted merely one or two days ago.
It needs to be roasted at least 5 to 12 days ago so it is not still realizing carbon dioxide. When buying from the store, check the date on the label for when it was roasted.
Give it a Grind
Grinding coffee beans can be done with a lot of tools and methods. But, the most effective way is using a high-quality burr grinder. These are better at griding compared to the cheaper metal blades that are widely available. Use one of the finest settings for griding your espresso.
The beans should be as fine as granulated sugar. You will need 7 grams of espresso, so grind beans for that amount specifically. That much espresso should be enough for 30 ml of an espresso shot. For a double shot, you want twice the amount, which means 14 grams of espresso.
Too coarsely ground espresso will let the water run through them faster. And so, the flavor won’t be very rich. While the ground that is too fine will end up pulling flavors for a much longer time. And this will cause more bitterness in your espresso.
Getting pre-ground from your local coffee shop is also possible if you don’t like the whole extra hassle. In case you are left with extra espresso then store it inside a container that is airtight. Keep it in a dry and cool place for the next use. Remember that you need to finish it up as soon as possible. After grinding, the flavor gradually starts fading away. You should not store it in the freezer or refrigerator since this will surely damage your beans.
Get Your Machine Ready
Now, let us get his machine going! To give it some time for heating up, turn the machine on at least a quarter or half an hour before you want to make your first cup. I like to make a blank shot first to get the machine warmed up.
Attach the portafilter to your machine and pour water into the tank. Not all espresso machine works the same. So, you should be aware of the switches and functions by reading the manual that comes along with your model.
After allowing the blank shot, dump out the warm water. It’s now all ready for the actual espresso shot. You will need to fill the espresso machine with clean and filtered water. Bring it to heating between 92 to 96 degrees Celsius.
The proper temperature matters a lot if you want to extract flavors out of your espresso compounds properly. Also, if possible don’t use tap water since there are minerals in it. And those are usually the main culprit for espresso machines becoming clogged over time. If you have to, make sure descaling is a part of your regular maintenance routine.
Tamping in Portafilter
Bring your espresso machine’s portafilter on the top scale. Time to measure the coffee ground and insert them into it. Using the proper amount of espresso is one of the major keys to ending up with a professional barista-style outcome. So, try not to skip it.
For double shots, use 14 to 18 grams of espresso grounds. Using a tamp you want to pack all the grounds inside the portafilter next. This helps to enhance the water passing capability of the espresso you use. Grip the handle and turn it so that a 90-degree angle rotation with your elbow takes place.
You want to push evenly while resting the portafilter on a level surface. This way you’ll apply around 30 pounds of pressure, which is the benchmark here. After tamping, don’t knock the portafilter’s outside. This often results in tiny cracks in the packed espresso puck. And so, the best flavors never develop.
Insert the packed and tamped portafilter inside a clean and rinsed brew head. You don’t want the portafilter completely filled up. Also, avoid allowing it to sit with packed espresso. This can burn the espresso and lead to a bitter flavor. Turn your machine on and let the shot start pulling. Keep your espresso cup or shot glass beneath to catch it.
After setting the timer, you need to wait for a few seconds. The espresso will shortly start dripping into your cup or glass. It should look to have a thick and creamy consistency. It’s called crema.
For a single shot, stop after 20 seconds. However, in the case of a double shot, you should end it after 20 to 30 seconds. You can turn the machine off as soon as the preferable volume comes out and the shot seems blonde in color.
And that was how to make espresso with machine. You now have a delicious espresso shot to enjoy. Go ahead and serve it with some chocolate or tiny cookies. Or you can also try turning it into a flavored coffee drink, cappuccino, or even latte.
Don’t forget to get rid of the puck of damp espresso grounds from the portafilter. Clean it with water and dry it before putting it back. Also, give the brew head a good cleaning. After all those maintenance duties, you can relax and enjoy the taste that you’ve worked so hard on!