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Snackshot of the Day: Latte

Snackshot of the Day: Latte


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Photos of all things food and drink from The Daily Meal

It's almost too pretty to drink. ALMOST.

The Daily Meal's editors, contributors, and readers dig into some pretty great restaurants, festivals, and meals. There's not always enough time to give a full review of a restaurant or describe in depth why a place, its food, and the people who prepare it are noteworthy, so Snackshot of the Day does what photographs do best, rely on the image to do most of the talking.

Today's Snackshot is of latte. All right guys, it's Thursday. The week is almost over, and for some, the weekend is already beginning. It's been a long road to get here. It's time to treat yourself. Take your coffee break at the artisanal place that's just a little farther away than Starbucks, and order something a little more fun (and pretty) than usual. If you're in Philly, we recommend Ultimo Coffee, where this beautiful thing came from.

Read more about The Daily Meal's Snackshot feature. To submit a photo, email jbruce[at]thedailymeal.com, subject: "Snackshots." Follow The Daily Meal's photo editor Jane Bruce on Twitter.


How to Make a Classic Latte at Home

A recipe and useful tips, whether or not you have an espresso machine.

A latte, or caffe latte, is a coffee drink that combines espresso with steamed milk and a thin layer of foam. Of all the coffee options, making specialty drinks like lattes and cappuccinos may seem a little daunting, especially if you don&rsquot have a specialized latte machine that brews the espresso for you and has a built-in milk frother &mdash two key components that require technique. However, in the Good Housekeeping Institute&rsquos Kitchen Appliances and Technology Lab, we&rsquove certainly learned a thing or two about brewing espressos and frothing milk from testing espresso machines and frothers &mdash and we're breaking down how to make a latte the right way so you can enjoy one at home. Below, a classic latte recipe and detailed instructions to teach you how to make one perfectly.

freshly brewed espresso (2 shots)

  1. Add the espresso into a 12-ounce mug. Set aside.
  2. Pour the milk into a frothing pitcher large enough to hold at least 12 ounces. Angle the pitcher slightly (this will make it easy to keep an eye on the milk) and submerge the steam wand diagonally into the lower right quadrant and turn it on. Don&rsquot be startled by the loud noise as steam pushes through the wand. It&rsquos normal! The milk will start moving in a circular motion. The tip of the wand should be about two inches below the surface and should not touch the wall of the pitcher. Keep it in the same position the whole time. If the tip of the wand is too shallow, it&rsquoll create too many bubbles making the milk overflow. It should look creamy and silky, without too much foam on top. The bubbles should be tiny and uniform.
  3. Stop the frother when the milk reaches 140ºF to 150ºF (you should be able to comfortably hold the side of the hot pitcher for about three seconds).
  4. Gently tap the pitcher on the counter and swirl it around to pop any large bubbles and even out the texture of the milk.
  5. Gently pour the frothed milk over the espresso in a slow narrow stream. There should be up to a three quarter-inch layer of foam on top of the latte.

Snackshot of the Day: Latte - Recipes

Last May the New York-based investment firm Invest Hospitality joined with Table on Post Oak to help revamp and re-brand the restaurant, which had been floundering. La Table, as it’s now known – the space began life as Philippe restaurant in 2011 with chef Philippe Schmit in the kitchen – is a multi-concept eatery with spaces for casual dining, fine dining and private dining. Two weeks ago, the restaurant unveiled Macarons, its onsite French bakery.

Macarons is located on the first floor of La Table, which is in the same upscale strip center as RDG + Bar Annie. You’ll spot the bakery counter to your left as soon as you walk past the host stand. The bakery shares the first floor with the bar and Marché, the casual dining room meant to suggest the feel of Parisian market dining.

We stopped in for a midday Monday pick-me-up of coffee and pastries to check out the newly-opened bakery. It’s seat-yourself on the first floor, and the restaurant’s full menu is also available. Plans for a quick snack of something sweet fell apart when our server presented the irresistible lunch menu.

Without much persuasion, we gave in to ordering the roasted beet salad ($11, photo above) and the wild mushroom ravioli ($12, photo below). The salad is an artful arrangement of vibrant roasted beets, Blue Heron Farm goat milk yogurt and cheese, and D&M Gourmet Foods blood orange-infused extra virgin olive oil.

Mushroom ravioli – a dish that’s often presented as an uninspired bowl of beige – is thoughtfully plated with a parmesan emulsion and Bordelaise reduction, and each pillowy pocket is topped with a single mushroom and shaving of parmesan. It may still be beige (with a sprinkle of green), but it’s beautifully modern.

As for the baked goods at Macarons, expect a selection of madeleines, pots de creme, chocolate mousse, kouglof (cakes both sweet and savory), brioche, shortbread and, of course, macarons. All of the goods are baked in-house daily.

The not-too-sweet cinnamon brioche is a perfect pastry nibble with your morning latte the lemon and honey madeleines are fluffy and delicately flavored – the petite packages fit nicely inside a purse or pocket for a sweet treat later in the day. The pots de creme come in flavors like vanilla (with specs of vanilla bean visible through the bottom of the jar), chocolate and coffee.

Macarons/La Table will begin serving breakfast soon, so we’ll be back to re-stock our pastry purse, sip a latte and, perhaps, order a French omelet.


Snackshot of the Day: Latte - Recipes

Houston’s rapture with java and places to drink it continues unchecked as new coffeeshops pop up on corners all over town. One of the newest is in Montrose. Fix Coffeebar opened about five weeks ago and is already building a well-caffeinated clientele.

Fix is located on Lower Westheimer near Taft on the end of a rather elegant strip center. The decor emphasizes light wooden accents with golden lightbulbs that cast a warm glow throughout. One wall is covered in rectangular wooden “bricks” and provides a welcome back rest for folks hard at work on their various electronic devices. Otherwise seating includes picnic-style tables and stools at the counters (but beware, outlets seem sparse). A shelf on one side of the room is stocked with coffee gear, including the newfangled Aeropress.

Owners Gary Freeman and wife Karee developed Fix to celebrate their love for coffee, Montrose and all things local. They use Java Pura Roasters for the beans and Mill King Dairy for the latte art, while also stocking an array of pastries (zucchini muffins, cranberry scones, Danishes) and savory goods from Weights + Measures in Midtown. The almond croissants, filled with cinnamon cream, are often the first to go.

Fix has an impressive range of beverages, including a nitro brew on tap and a slow bar that offers pour-over and Aeropress ($3.50). The Aeropress brews coffee through a method akin to a French press and an espresso machine combined. The result is a slightly tart, bright taste reminiscent of berries and citrus with beautiful smoothness that glides into your mouth. (The owners recommend trying it with the Honey Process blend.)

House-made coffee syrups are also available. The mochas ($4.50), infused with a single-origin dark chocolate from Ghana, highlight buttery caramel notes to create an indulgent drink. Non-dairy options, including almond and coconut milk (.75), are offered as well.

I can see Fix becoming a spot for those looking for a place to park and plug in it’s open until 10 pm every day. It’s generally been serenely quiet, but the weekends can get busier with students studying, groups chatting over happy hour beers and wine (every day from 4 to 8 pm) and couples rocking their babies between sips of coffee. Clearly, Fix fits nicely into the Montrose neighborhood.


Skinny Latte Recipe

Published: Feb 17, 2021 · Modified: Feb 17, 2021 by Megan Porta · This post may contain affiliate links.

No need to spend $5/day on lattes. Make them in your own kitchen! This Skinny Latte recipe is a keeper! So delicious!

Original post: February 2016 | Updated: February 2021

I have a serious latte obsession and this has been going on for years. My latte love is so intense that I’ve recently upgraded from a medium to a large. And do you know how much a large latte costs? $5+. That is insane! Five dollars for a single drink. Some days it’s oh so worth the comfort, but please don’t make me do the math or I will freak out.

I created a solution for my latte craze and now I them at home! I like to keep my lattes skinny, so I use extract vs. syrup and Stevia vs. sugar. Do what fits your taste and diet. I’ve tried a variety of different flavored extracts and caramel is my fave.

This skinny latte recipe is super easy to make and requires no fancy machines. You are going to love it!


Coffee Roasts

Roasting the coffee uses heat which brings out a varying degree of flavors. This is the step that will truly determine which type of coffee you love best. Roast varies between light, light/medium, medium, medium/dark, and bold. But, to keep it simple, let’s stick to light, medium and dark roasts.

Light Roast, Medium Roast, and Dark Roast Coffee Comparison

Light Roast

Lightly roasted coffee has the most natural taste because the heat hasn’t completely stripped or “burned” the natural flavors of the coffee. This coffee has been roasted before, during or right after the first crack. If you prefer natural-tasting coffee, light roast just might be for you.

Medium Roast

At this stage, the flavor compounds begin to roast out of the bean so there will still be a well-balanced flavor to the coffee. The sugars within the bean become caramelized and will still carry much of the original flavor. This occurs between the first and second crack.

Dark Roast

The sugars in dark roast coffee are almost completely masked by the caramelization of the bean. This occurs near or after the second crack and will result in bold, smokey, and bitter flavor notes. It’s important to make sure you are purchasing high-quality beans to avoid burned or undesired flavors.


Dulce De Leche Latte: A Valentine’s Day Treat

There’s no need for a heart-shaped box of chocolates to celebrate Valentine’s Day whether with the gals or with a special someone. This year, just head to your pantry for a decadent latte that will melt just about anyone’s heart (as well as quench that sweet tooth).

This dulce de leche latte combines coffee with sweetened condensed milk (and dark chocolate whipped cream to make it extra indulgent!). Enjoy this dulce de leche latte hot or iced. Whichever way you choose, your Valentine will certainly love you a latte.

Note: I may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through some of the below links. Read my disclosure policy to learn more.

Make the dulce de leche first and foremost if you’re going the homemade route.

Dulce de leche is similar to caramel in both texture and color. However, it differs slightly in terms of flavor and ingredients. Caramel is made from sugar whereas dulce de leche is made from sweetened condensed milk. In heating the condensed milk, it creates a luscious liquid gold substance that’s similar in flavor to toffee. It’s Spanish translation actually means “candy made of milk.”

It’s important to make the dulce de leche before doing anything else in this recipe because it requires the most time. You will need to set aside about 2 hours to make the dulce de leche. But don’t worry, it’s a very simple process.

I prefer organic whenever possible, which is why I went with 365 by Whole Foods Market Sweetened Condensed Milk. It tasted amazing, and it worked flawlessly for this recipe, so I highly recommend.

To save time, you can buy a jar of high-quality dulce de leche.

Though I prefer going the homemade route, I understand that not everyone has the time. If you want a quick-fix, there are high-quality store-bought options such as Stonewall Kitchen’s Dulce de Leche, Los Nietitos Dulce de Leche, and San Ignacio’s Dulce de Leche.

Pour one can of sweetened condensed milk into a small glass baking dish and stick in the oven.

This is the easy part. Just pour an entire 14-ounce can of sweetened condensed milk into a small square glass baking dish, cover it, and bake it for two hours at 425°F.

Check in every 30 minutes or so to see if it’s starting to brown properly. You’ll know it’s done when it reaches a caramel color. This is why I use a glass baking dish because I am able to see through the sides of the glass without having to open the aluminum cover each time.

Whisk the sauce after about 5 minutes after it’s come out of the oven to smooth out any lumps.

After you’ve pulled out the dulce de leche out of the oven, let it cool for about 5 to 10 minutes, then whisk it smooth. I recommend doing this while it’s still warm because otherwise, you won’t be able to fully get rid of the lumps.

Note: it doesn’t really matter if it’s lumpy. It still will taste the same as it will dissolve in the latte either way.

Store the dulce de leche inside an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

After the dulce de leche has cooled, store it in the fridge for up to 2 weeks in an airtight container. I kept mine in the baking dish it was baked in and covered it tightly with foil. It worked very well, and saved me from cleaning an extra dish.

If you’re making an iced dulce de leche latte, make sure the dulce de leche is at room temperature prior to making your latte.

At this stage, if you’re going to make an iced dulce de leche latte, pull the dulce de leche out of the fridge and allow it to reach room temperature before proceeding on to the next steps.

The reason being that it may not fully dissolve in the hot espresso you will make in the next step if you add COLD dulce de leche. No one wants lumps in their latte — yuck.

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For a warm latte, you will need an electric frother, a steam wand, or use a glass mason jar to foam your milk.

If you’re making a warm latte, you will need the right tools to foam your milk properly. You can use either an electric milk frother, a steam wand (connected to an espresso machine), or you can also use a mason jar and a microwave. See this post for further instructions on foaming milk without a fancy machine!

Steam your milk prior to pulling your espresso shot.

This step is for warm lattes. Froth your milk before brewing the espresso in the next step because the espresso suffers with every second it sits out after being pulled. The crema will begin to degrade and it will also cool down, which isn’t ideal for a warm beverage.

Make 2 shots of espresso or about 4 ounces of highly concentrated coffee.

Whether you’re making an iced latte or a regular latte, you will need to make about 2 shots of espresso or 4 ounces of highly concentrated coffee. I offer this substitution of coffee for those who don’t have an espresso machine and because it doesn’t make a huge difference in flavor since the dulce de leche is the star of the show in this coffee drink.

To make an espresso, see my step-by-step espresso-making tutorial here. For highly concentrated coffee, there are a few ways to go about it. One way is to use an AeroPress, as this produces a clean, smooth concentrated cup. See my AeroPress tutorial here.

Some coffee machines have the option to make a concentrated cup of coffee sometimes labeled as “Specialty” or “Espresso Style.” Another option is to adjust the ratio so your coffee to water ratio is 1:4 or 1:3 instead of the normal 1:12. You can change the ratio for just about any brew method.

Add the dulce de leche to the espresso glass prior to pulling the espresso.

For best results, add the desired amount of dulce de leche to your espresso cup prior to pulling your shot. This will help to melt down the dulce de leche, as the espresso will be hottest as it’s being pulled through the machine.

This is especially important if you’re making an iced latte. You want to melt that dulce de leche down, and this step will help you get there quicker!

Stir the dulce de leche and espresso thoroughly.

After you’ve brewed the espresso (highly concentrated coffee), stir the mixture thoroughly. Ultimately, you should continue to stir until the dulce de leche and espresso mixture is completely smooth and without any lumps.

Then, get your serving glass ready. Pour the espresso in first followed by the foamed milk (or cold milk) and stir gently.

If serving over ice, add the ice cubes after you’ve poured in your milk of choice. This will help to keep the at a higher temperature for as long as possible, which in turn, helps to break down the dulce de leche (just in case there are any remaining lumps left).

Top with freshly whipped cream and ground cinnamon.

Garnish this Valentine’s Day beverage with freshly whipped cream and sprinkle a dash of ground cinnamon or cocoa powder over the top.

For the ultimate Valentine’s Day treat, add homemade chocolate whipped cream instead. See my dark chocolate whipped cream recipe here.

Use the left over dulce de leche for other Valentine’s Day desserts such as a cheesecake, brownies, fudge, or add it over the top of ice cream!

You will likely have a ton of dulce de leche left over even if you make a few of these addicting dulce de leche lattes. Luckily, there are tons of lovely desserts you can make with dulce de leche including dulce de leche cheesecake, dulce de leche fudge, dulce de leche crepes, and you can even drizzle it over the top of ice cream!

Tag me on Instagram @bakedbrewedbeautiful, so I can see your beautiful brews!

After you’ve finished brewing your latte, take a snapshot and let me know how your drink turned out! Tag me on Instagram @bakedbrewedbeautiful or use the hashtag #bakedbrewedbeautiful, so I can see your beautiful creations — happy brewing.


Making Espresso Drinks

While there&aposs definitely an art to preparing the perfect espresso drink, the process doesn&apost have to be a foreign concept.

Starting From the Grounds, Up

There are two main types of espresso machines, and they each require a different grind, so first you&aposll want to determine if yours is steam-driven or pump-driven. (Check with the manufacturer or store where you purchased it.) When you buy beans, specify your machine-type and the barista should know how coarse or fine to grind the beans.

If you want to use a home-grinder, read this article for tips on getting the correct grind:

Got Aerated Milk?

Steaming the milk is the first step in preparing an espresso drink, and the trick to getting creamy, velvety quality is aerating as you steam:

  • Fill your milk pitcher no more than half-full (milk will expand when steamed).
  • Submerge the steam wand into milk, then turn the steam wand on.
  • Begin to aerate by lowering the pitcher a bit while guiding the steam wand so the tip is just kissing the surface of the milk.
  • Find that sweet spot where a layer of foam is beginning to form, creating a sprinkler-like sound, but the wand isn&apost blowing big bubbles in the milk.
  • Once you have a layer of foam, submerge the steam wand again. Continue steaming to between 145-165 degrees F.
  • If while steaming, the sound begins to get high pitched, repeat the aeration process, lowering the milk pitcher, until the sound mellows to a soft hum.

When you&aposre done, wipe the steam wand with a wet towel (folded over), then blast the steam wand for a second or two into the towel to blow out any milk that&aposs been caught inside.

Anatomy of an Espresso Shot

Producing quality espresso will be much easier if you become familiar with the three components of a shot. Yes, there will be a little memorization required, but not in the scary biology way.

  • The crema is the top thin layer and sweetest part of an espresso shot. A good crema should be a light golden-brown color.
  • The body makes up the middle and "umph" of the shot and should be a caramel-brown color.
  • The heart is the very bottom of an espresso shot and is the bitter balance to the crema&aposs sweetness. It should be a deep, rich brown color.

For a great example of what shots should look like pouring, empty a can or bottle of Guinness® beer into a pint glass. Notice how it seems to be pouring in rich, creamy layers--dark to light--from the bottom of the pint up. This is exactly how an espresso shot should appear. Just don&apost expect them to taste the same.

Pulling Shots

"Pulling" actually refers to the first espresso machines that had levers to pull down in order for shots to pour. Pulling shots doesn&apost entail quite the workout it once did, but you&aposll still have to put a little muscle into it. Here&aposs what you need to know to pull shots at home:

  • Watering the grounds: for the best results, use filtered water in your espresso machine.
  • Portion control: scoop 4T of grounds into your portafilter to pull two one-ounce shots.
  • Tamp it like you mean it: "tamping" is just a fancy way of saying "packing the coffee grounds down." Use a medium forced tamp to start, then adjust if needed. If your first shots pour too fast: tamp harder too slow: tamp lighter.
  • Timing is everything: in addition to how a shot looks, the amount of time it takes for shots to pour is also a good indication of quality. Two one-ounce shot glasses should take roughly between 12 to 18 seconds to fill.

Now that you understand the basic elements in making an espresso drink, it&aposs time for a coffee break. Ready? Pull!

What Did They Say?
Sometimes it seems like baristas are speaking a different language. Allow us to translate:

Macchiato: refers to a drink "marked with" something: "marked with" foam, "marked with" a shot of espresso, etc.
Ristretto shot: using the same amount of coffee grounds, water is only poured to produce the first half of an espresso shot. A ristretto shot still contains most of the caffeine and is sweeter than a full shot.
Portafilter: the "thing" you put the coffee grounds into to pull espresso shots.
Split Shot: half decaf, half caffeinated
Shot-in-the-dark, Red Eye, or Pile Driver: this drink--drip coffee with a shot of espresso--goes by a variety of amusing names.

Equipment Check-list

  • Steaming pitcher
  • Milk thermometer
  • Milk towels
  • Coffee scoop (2T size)
  • Coffee tamper
  • Knock box (to knock used grounds into--optional)
  • Large spoon (to hold back foam as you pour)

Basic Espresso Drinks

Solo Espresso: a single shot of espresso
Doppio Espresso: two shots of espresso
Espresso Macchiato: espresso shots with a dollop of foam
Espresso Con Panna: espresso shots topped with whipped cream
Americano: espresso shots with hot water
Latte: espresso shots with steamed milk, topped with a layer of foam
Mocha: espresso with chocolate, steamed milk, usually topped with whipped cream
Latte Macchiato: steamed milk topped with a layer of foam and a ristretto shot of espresso
Cappuccino: espresso with half steamed milk, half foam. "Dry" refers to more foam than the standard, and "wet" refers to more milk than the standard. "Bone dry" means espresso shots, then filled to the brim with foam.


How to Make Matcha Latte

Place the matcha powder in a deep bowl or mug. Heat the water to 160ºF (70ºC) and pour over the matcha powder. Use a matcha whisk to first bury all the powder under the water, then whisk vigorously in a back-and-forth motion until the matcha is completely dissolved.

Add the honey and vanilla bean paste and whisk until incorporated.

Heat the milk and cream in a small pan set over medium-low heat. The milk/cream should be between 140 and 160ºF (60-70ºC). Froth the milk/cream. Pour over the dissolved matcha.

When I first heard about matcha (and saw the price tag), I thought, &ldquoWell, shucks. I can make that myself by opening a bag of green tea and grinding it in the coffee grinder!&rdquo

I was severely disappointed. And for good reason.

Matcha powder is so much more than ground-up green tea leaves. It is delicately grown, harvested, and processed. The result is a beautiful, deep, rich flavor. Yes, it does have grassy undertones, but a good matcha isn&rsquot overly bitter.

If you&rsquod like to get into drinking green tea, I highly recommend starting with matcha. And a matcha latte is the ultimate treat.

These are the ingredients and tools that I like to use to make a matcha latte at home:

  • a double-sized mug (12-ounce size)
  • a bamboo matcha whisk and scoop (you can also just use a teaspoon instead of a traditional scoop)
  • matcha powder
  • milk and cream (yes, this is technically a breve)
  • honey
  • vanilla bean paste

It&rsquos also handy to have an infrared laser thermometer (which I stole borrowed from my husband), or an instant-read thermometer.

Place 2 scoops (or 1 teaspoon) of matcha powder in your mug. You can also use a special matcha bowl, but I find that a mug works just fine (and doesn&rsquot dirty up as many dishes).

Heat some water to 160ºF (70ºC). I like to heat mine a bit beyond 160ºF since it will cool down as I get everything else ready.

Add the water to the matcha powder.

Skooch all of the matcha powder under the water with the whisk. Then, whisk vigorously in a straight up and down, back-and-forth motion. Do this for about a minute, or until the matcha powder is completely dissolved.

I like to finish off by switching between a circular, back-and-forth, and &ldquoW&rdquo motion.


This Copycat Starbucks Pistachio Latte Is Twice as Insta-Worthy as the Original (and Just as Good)

I love trying the new drinks that Starbucks comes up with. I also love anything pistachio-flavored, so the coffee chain's new Pistachio Latte is right up my alley. And as much as I want to walk down that alley every day, a girl has her budget to think about, so I resolved to try and make this latte myself. I worried it would be a tricky drink to replicate as the flavors aren't as familiar as your standard caramel or chocolate, and the Salted Brown Butter Cookie Flavored Topping is as unique as it is delicious.

Thankfully, a quick search brought me to a copycat recipe that was fairly easy and only required one ingredient that wasn't already in my pantry: pistachio extract! You can buy it on Amazon for around $10 (I went with the one that the recipe suggested). I love pistachio flavor and definitely plan to make more of these lattes, so I thought it was a worthwhile investment. I also love that buying the extract lets you control the amount of sugar in your latte, since the extract provides all the pistachio flavor.

This latte is a little more labor-intensive than strolling up to your local Starbucks, but if you have 10 extra minutes between Zoom calls or want to treat yourself on a weekend, I promise it's worth it. Personally, I love knowing exactly what's in the food that I'm putting in my body, so homemade lattes are my favorite way to healthily indulge. I also savored this latte a lot more because I knew I'd made it myself. The brown butter cookie topping isn't an exact Starbucks replica, but it still adds delicious flavor and depth to the latte. Just be careful when making the brown butter: it browns very quickly since there's only a tablespoon of it. Your end result should take less than five minutes and look something like this (you can also find a video tutorial here).

In addition to the brown butter cookie topping, I added whipped cream and my favorite pistachios from Setton Farms, just because I was feeling fancy. And by feeling fancy, I mean I devoured the whipped cream, brown butter, and pistachios with a spoon before even trying the latte! You can certainly skip the whipped cream and crushed pistachios, but I recommend them both for the flavor and honestly, for the 'gram. Besides, as you can tell by the photo below, the pistachios make a major aesthetic difference! I also highly recommend green food coloring if you're going for that pistachio look — 1-2 drops is perfect for giving this that pastel green color.


Watch the video: ΤΙ ΣΥΝΈΒΗ ΠΡΑΓΜΑΤΙΚΆ. Part 2