Barista

Top Tips For At-Home Baristas

Nespresso’s head of coffee, Karsten Ranitzsch, has given us his top 5 tips for at-home baristas and a special recipe for Caramelito Affogato.

1. Get frothy: The density of froth changes depending on the type of milk used.  Milk with a high fat content makes a richer and denser froth, whereas milk with a low fat content will make a lighter, more aerated froth.

2. Learn the language: Impress your guests with your coffee knowledge. A Caffé Latte in Italian simply means ‘coffee and milk’, while the word Macchiato literally translates as ‘stained’, meaning to make the coffee with a stain of milk.

3. Create new tasting experiences: Try adding coffee to sweet and savoury recipes, whether it’s a simple Affogato for dessert or as part of a savoury dish.  Check out www.nespresso.com/coffee-and-milk for more recipes.

4. Serve wisely: The design, size and shape of your coffee cup can improve the coffee-drinking experience, as the shape has an impact on the structure and consistency of the crema.  For espresso, serve in a small cup made of porcelain or glass and for coffee with milk, use a taller glass.

5. A perfect match: When pairing coffee with snacks, coffee should enhance the flavour not overpower it.  The trick is to look for complementary flavour notes, so pair strong coffee with intense, rich treats such as dark chocolate and mild blends with delicate snacks like puff pastry. 

Caramelito Affogato

Serves 4

Ingredients

Salted caramel cream

110g caster sugar

95g fresh cream

70g unsalted butter

Crumble

1 capsule of Caramelito Variations (coffee grounds)

40g caster sugar

40g ground almonds

25g plain flour

10g cocoa powder

Salt (just a pinch)

35g unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Assembly

Vanilla ice cream

1 capsule of Caramelito Variations (40mL)

Method

  1. To make the caramel cream, scald cream and set aside.
  2. Dry caramelise sugar and dissolve thoroughly until golden brown.
  3. Add caramel to cream and simmer for 30 seconds.
  4. Whisk in butter and cool.
  5. Mix crumble ingredients in a bowl, including the coffee grounds from one Caramelito Variations capsule.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes in 330 degrees F (165 degrees C) oven.
  7. Pour salted caramel cream into a glass and then place a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.
  8. To finish, pour hot Nespresso Variations Caramelito coffee on top of ice cream and sprinkle with crumble.

Tip: For a simple, everyday affogato, place a generous scoop of ice cream into individual glasses and pour your favourite Grand Cru coffee over the top. For an indulgent treatafter dinner, use Decaffeinato Intenso.

Recipe by Darren Purchese, chef and owner of Burch & Purchese Sweet Studio in Melbourne

August 20, 2014

5 Tips To Make The Perfect Barista-Style Coffee At Home

Addicted to your favourite coffee shop? Can’t get through your day without a visit to your barista? So were we, until we found out that your daily flat white addiction costs up to $1,400 a year!

About time to learn how to make that perfect barista-style coffee at home, don’t you think? From selecting your favourite beans to choosing the right coffee machine, these 5 tips have been put together from top baristas over the years will leave you feeling like a self-appointed coffee connoisseur in no time at all.

Beans

  • It all starts with the beans. The most important thing to remember is that, fresh is best. Just like wine, coffee oxidizes, so the more it is exposed to air and oxygen, the more the flavour of the coffee is degraded
  • To ensure your beans stay fresh, keep your coffee beans or ground coffee in an airtight container. Avoid storing them in the fridge or freezer as the moisture will ruin the essential oils
  • Whether you’re after an Arabica or Robusta coffee bean, or perhaps even a blend of the two, there are many different flavours of coffee and one to suit every taste
  • As a general guide, lighter blends are more palatable, and darker beans (like the Robusta variety) have a stronger, more acidic flavour
  • There are a lot of different choices available but trial and error is the best approach – your favourite bean might be waiting for you in the supermarket, local café or from your coffee machine provider

The machine

  • Choose a machine to meet your needs – if you have a small kitchen try a compact machine like the new DéLonghi PrimaDonna XS, or if you have kids (large and small) with a penchant for hot chocolates, consider investing in the PrimaDonna Exclusive Coffee Machine which also comes with an extra hot chocolate function
  • DéLonghi is the most popular fully automatic coffee machine provider in Australia and their newest release, the DéLonghi PrimaDonna XS is one of the most kitchen friendly offerings on the market – at just 19.5cm wide, it is the perfect coffee machine for snug city apartments, kitchens and small office environments.
  • Simplifying the coffee making process, the DéLonghi PrimaDonns XS can make the most complex order with one touch of a button

The daily grind 

  • The grind of your coffee will greatly influence the end result as it impacts the amount of contact time between the hot water and the beans
  • Grind it too fine and you will have a bitter coffee (the result of too much contact time), whilst grinding it too coarsely will give you a watery blend (i.e. too little contact time)
  • For the most consistent blend, grind your own beans or use a burr grinder. The DéLonghi PrimaDonna XS comes with an integrated burr grinder and an incredible 13 settings to guarantee the coffee beans are freshly ground each time, just to your liking
  • Good quality grinders will help extract all the essential oils from the coffee beans, giving you a delicious, full bodied crème
  • Experiment with the settings to find your ideal grind. Once you have this you are well on your way to a great cup of coffee

Milk

If you like a milky coffee – as opposed to an espresso or a long black – there are a number of things you need to be aware of:

  • The temperature of the milk should sit somewhere between 60C and 70C, so if you are frothing your own milk keep a thermometer nearby. It’s a good idea to stop once the temperature reaches 60 C as the temperature will continue to rise as the milk rests
  • Try not to overheat the milk as it will burn the coffee beans and leave you with a bitter tasting coffee
  • If you’re not confident frothing your own milk it could be worth investing in a machine that has an Instant Frothing Device (IFD) and can do the hard work for you – whichever milk you choose
  • Contrary to popular belief it is actually easier to froth skim milk than full cream milk

Cup choice

  • Double walled glasses are the top choice for coffee lovers as they are comfortable to hold whilst keeping the heat in. DéLonghi has a fantastic range of double walled glasses from espresso cups all the way up to  larger offerings, allowing you to choose the size that suits your coffee preference
  • Try and match your glass to your drink – anything too big and the coffee will lose heat faster than you can drink it!

Do you make coffee at home or hit your favourite coffee shop for your daily grind?

August 19, 2013