It can be challenging to make decent espresso if you don't know the basics. Perfectly roasted coffee beans, an outstanding brewing formula, a clean espresso machine, and a mill are absolutely necessary. You should also be aware of the ideal methods for pulling an espresso. That's why we've written this post, to give you some pointers on how to make the perfect espresso at home. Keep reading to find out more.
Clean Before Dosing
Maintaining your espresso machine may be the most tedious aspect of your role as a home barista, but it is not something that should be taken lightly. A poorly cleaned machine results in poor quality coffee, it’s as simple as that. Ensure your portafilter is nice and clean before you put the coffee grounds into it. If not properly maintained, the resulting moisture and residual grinds could cause your espresso to come out bitter.
Grind and Measure
To ensure that you're accurately weighing out the coffee grinds, it is essential to use a scale. As a basic guideline, espresso coffee beans should be ground very finely, finer than sand, but not overly done that the machine is unable to force water out through the portafilter.
A normal dose of coffee for a double shot of espresso is about 15g. However, since each espresso machine is different, you should trial your optimal dose by leaving just enough space at the top after you've tamped down the shot. This can help gain excellent clearance for brewing when you insert the portafilter into the equipment.
Level and Tamp Evenly
Next, distribute the coffee bed so the water doesn't pour out unequally, which results in an unevenly brewed espresso. To spread the grinds more uniformly, lightly tap the edge of the portafilter. You may also use a tamping mat to aid you in the process.
Take hold of the tamper grip as if it were a doorknob. Push vertically downwards, putting firm pressure onto it, keeping the surface in line with your wrist and elbow. The force you apply isn't nearly as crucial as your precision and ability to sustain the tamp absolutely level, to prevent water from finding weak points.
Purge and Get Ready for Your Espresso
Lastly, flush the group head for up to three seconds before pulling your espresso. This guarantees that all oils and coffee grounds are drained out of the panel. Even though the exterior of your screen looks to be clean, the interior may not be, which might be detrimental to your upcoming brews.
To obtain effective and well-balanced espressos, different baristas utilize different guidelines. Some recommend measuring the dry coffee as well as the final wet espresso. A ratio of two parts of dry coffee to three parts of the wet espresso is a good gauge. Consequently, based on your preference, 20g of dry coffee grounds should give a finished espresso shot weighing 30 to 40g.
Making decent espresso is not as complex as you might imagine. With the right tools and a little know-how, you will soon be extracting spectacular shots from your espresso machine. Just follow the guidelines we’ve listed above and you won’t go wrong.