Want to make an exceptional espresso? Here’s how you can use an espresso coffee machine in a way that will give baristas a run for their money. Espresso coffee machines are specifically designed to brew espresso and not just regular coffee. There is a plethora of espresso coffee machines in the market but the main distinguishing factor is that some machines use pods while others use ground coffee. Pod machines are easy-to-use where you just add a pod, press a button and the coffee process is initiated.
For this how-to we will focus on using espresso coffee machine with ground coffee. So let’s begin:
- Fill up the water reservoir with water and pre-heat your espresso coffee machine.
- Tamp the coffee grounds:
There are espresso coffee machines that take care of the whole brewing process and offer a bean-to-cup experience whereas some machines like the Budan and Rancilio Silvia V6 espresso machines require you to add ground coffee and make it compact, this process is called tamping.
Also, coffee machines that use ground coffee come with a handle that holds a small metal basket known as the portafilter. With an espresso coffee machine, there comes a tamper disc that is attached to the unit itself. So you simply have to lift up your portafilter underneath the disk and compact the coffee grounds until they are firm. But some machines have a tamper missing, so you can get hold of other handheld versions that allow you to press down onto the coffee.
- Create a shot of coffee:
So you’ve almost tamped your coffee, you can now place the portafilter into its holder in the machine- called a group head and wait for the espresso coffee machine to work its magic at the start of a button.
If you have a penchant for only an espresso shot, then that is all you need to do. But if you want to make a milk-based espresso, you’ll need to jump on to the steam wand.
- Froth your milk with the steam wand:
Broaden your coffee making capabilities by choosing an espresso coffee machine with a steam wand. This works by steaming milk until it increases in temperature and generates froth.
Turn on the steam wand for a few seconds while you add milk into your steam jug. This is basically done to avoid drips of water that come out initially and don’t end up in your milk.
Now place the steam wand into the milk jug and ensure the end of the wand is below the milk surface, but not down at the bottom of the jug. The result will be a foam on the top and after you’ve reached your desired level of frothiness, place the steam arm deeper into the milk so that the milk is heated properly. As soon as it heats up, pour your espresso shot and the milk into a mug ready to drink.