Coffee Latte, caffelatte or Café Latte. Dear child has many names and regardless of which one you use, the following can be stated: the drink has become a success all over the world. The question is, where did it all begin?
There is an interesting controversy surrounding the coffee latte and this lies in the fact that a cafe in Berkeley, California claimed to have invented the mixture. This happened in the mid-50s and the claim was almost immediately met with resistance - for obvious reasons. What we in Europe call a coffee latte had been served for about 50 years before this American cafe "reinvented" the drink.
Coffee latte - from Italy, adopted by the USA
Coffee latte is an Italian drink where you mix coffee with skimmed milk - something that was invented around the same time that steam-powered espresso machines saw the light of day. Through the steam, you could easily heat and froth the milk and through this also serve guests who considered espresso too strong a drink with a little more sweetness and rounded corners. For example, coffee latte was considered the perfect drink to serve to children (!).
Bottom line: coffee latte is far from a novelty and it is, almost as usual, about the very cradle of the drink being Italy.
The US then? You can actually partially give the aforementioned cafe in Berkeley and Starbucks a point in this context. What they did was partly to cut off the prefix Kaffe and only use Latte as the name and partly also to serve the drink in larger mugs. Through its version - which is quite different from an Italian coffee latte - Starbucks has created one of the world's most popular coffee drinks and it is the one that is largely the basis of the group's success.
If you visit a Starbucks and order a Latte, you will receive a giant cup where the lion's share of the contents is milk. If you visit a regular Italian cafe, you will get a coffee latte that is made with espresso, skimmed milk and an extreme amount of love. If, on the other hand, you were to order a latte at this Italian cafe - yes, you would get a glass of skimmed milk. Namely, as you probably figured out, latte means milk in Italian.
How to make coffee latte at home
A common question is how to make a coffee latte at home. Does coffee latte milk have to be of a special kind or does it work with regular milk you buy in the store? Do you really have to have an espresso machine? The simple answer is yes, you need it, but we'll see if we can't come up with a trick.
If we start with the milk, just take whatever kind of milk you like best. If you don't have an espresso machine at home and can steam the milk, you can heat it, on the stove or in e.g. the microwave and then either whisk it with a small electric whisk like that or pour it into a glass jar, screw the lid really tight and then shake, shake, shake.
The coffee is probably the most important and according to the recipe you should have espresso as the base. If you don't have an espresso machine, you can buy a small moka pot. It is a classic old Italian grunka that you place directly on the stove and brew a strong little coffee that resembles espresso. Worst case and you're okay with the fact that it won't be a cappuccino like you can have at a cafe filter coffee then. With all that said, here is a coffee latte recipe:
- Brew a double espresso (or similar). It should be about 40 grams, which in round throws is 4 cl. Pour into a tall glass.
- Steam or heat milk. If you don't have the opportunity to steam, you can heat milk in a saucepan and then whisk it until frothy afterwards. The milk should reach a temperature of approximately 65 degrees.
- Pour the hot milk over the espresso and enjoy. If you haven't steamed the milk, there isn't much of a chance you'll get any latte art, so then it's more about the proportions that have to be right. If you look at a real coffee latte, it should contain approximately 20% coffee mixed with 60% hot milk and then 20% skimmed milk on top.
Good luck, and if it doesn't go well, come to one of our stores and we'll make you a real caffe latte! And if you've invested in an espresso machine, we can highly recommend that you take one of our courses, we'll go through both the theoretical basics and, in practical terms, how to make the best latte!
FAQ - Coffee Latte
How to make coffee latte?
You make a coffee latte by taking a cup of espresso and then filling it with hot - steamed - milk and then skimmed milk on top. 20% of the drink is coffee mixed with 60% warm milk and 20% skimmed milk.
What is the difference between a coffee latte and a cappuccino?
Both a coffee latte and a cappuccino contain hot and frothed milk as well as espresso. The difference is that with a cappuccino you use smaller amounts of warm milk, i.e. proportionally with coffee, which of course gives a more distinct coffee taste. However, the similarities are striking and it can be difficult for a layperson to tell the drinks apart.
What does coffee latte contain?
A coffee latte contains milk - some hot and some skimmed - as well as an espresso.
How to make a coffee latte at home?
If you lack an espresso machine and something to steam - and froth - the milk with, you can use a moka pot, for example. Pour coffee into a tall glass, heat milk to 65 degrees and whisk some of this frothy. Pour the warm milk into the glass and top up with the skimmed milk at the end. Almost like in a cafe!
How much coffee in a coffee latte?
The basic recipe is a double espresso, i.e. 40-43 g. Approximately 20% of a coffee latte consists of coffee. It is of course possible to experiment and, for example, take a simple espresso - then called a latte macchiato. Or ask for an extra shot of espresso. However, the basis is that 20% coffee applies.