Jake Uys, co-owner of YUM Eat Cafe, loves his coffees. He creates the tasteful coffee creations; preferable slow-brewed and sometimes with a time-consuming manual finishing touch. The beans are on his specification roasted at the Beanery in Hermanus and per coffee-order ground on the spot. Every speciality coffee needs its own ground, exact weight, water temperature, etc. Weekly, every Tuesday, Jake writes his coffee post for this blog. Starting with the history and ending with the perfect ‘Latte’. The first four postings were excerpts from Wikipedia about history, cultivation, processing and brewing.
To make the perfect cappuccino one has to start at the most important part of making coffee and that is the coffee bean and how it is blended to give a specific proprietary or signature blend. There are more than 20 species of coffee plants, but only two, namely Robusta and Arabica are used for the lion’s share of commercial coffees.
Robusta beans have a woody, bitter taste and aroma and are often included in the espresso blends to boost “crema”, the alluring layer of tiny, smooth bubbles that trap the wonderful aromatics in the caramel “top” of the espresso. Arabica varieties are appreciated for their acidity and depth they add to the blends, beans from different origins are blended to make a coffee that is higher in quality than any of the beans on their own. Superior Arabica varieties stand alone as single origin and estate coffees.
Now that we have the beans to make a good espresso, we can start with the basis of a good cappuccino! The cappuccino is made up of one third espresso, one third fine smooth foam, one third steamed milk in a cup size of 150 – 175 ml. In the last few years the cappuccino has taken the world by storm! The ideal is still to make the perfect cappuccino and to do that you have to go back to the basics.
The original cappuccino is made up of three equal parts of espresso coffee, fine smooth foam and steamed milk (it can be full cream of low fat milk). Firstly pour very cold milk in a metal jug (concave) and steam until fine, smooth foam has formed – not more than 60 degree C and set aside. Next brew an espresso into a cappuccino (150 – 175 ml) cup. Pour the steamed milk over the coffee, keeping the froth back till last when it can be spooned onto the surface. Top with a sprinkle of cocoa, chocolate or cinnamon if you please.
The perfect temperature for the perfect cappuccino should be between 72 and 76 degree C.
There you are! That was only one perfect cup!