How to Use an Espresso Machine

In order to produce a produce coffee drink of espresso – one requires a dedicated machine that delivers a highly pressurized stream of hot water necessary for processing this particular kind of fine, powder-like ground coffee. With a thicker consistency than drip coffee, little amounts of espresso are usually served – often as a shot. However, it is rather common to see espresso blended with other beverages, such as cappuccino and lattes, in an effort to lessen the strong taste and level of caffeine.

With a history that dates back to the early 20th century in Milan, Italy – espresso has become a well-liked drink amongst coffee lovers. This trend has led to an increasing number of people to purchase their own espresso coffee machines in order to bring home the taste they deeply enjoy.

Before you try to use your espresso machine (depending on your model), you will most likely need to get an espresso grinder and espresso beans, demitasse cups, and water. When approaching the issue of water in regards to using your espresso machine, it is suggested to keep in mind that bottled spring water is not the optimum choice for your unit. The amount of minerals found in spring water will damage your espresso machine. Alternatively, it is preferable to use water that has gone through a process of filtration. 

To get an idea of how to use an espresso machine, an example of instructions is posted below:

1) First, you will pour clear, cold water into the water chamber of your machine. The boiler cap on your unit should be closed. In order to create one shot of espresso – one ounce of water is needed. A double shot requires two ounces. Depending on your espresso machine, you may be able to create up to four shots at one time.

2) Position the coffee basket in the filter holder, followed by lightly packing in the ground coffee. Most filters will provide a means to measure how much espresso you are making.

3) Next, you will remove any grounds found on the sides and top of the filter. The filter holder is then placed in the espresso machine.

4) If your machine comes with a glass carafe, this is the time where you position the carafe under the spout. When no carafe is available, a cup is enough. Turn on the machine and in due time – the water is heated to the appropriate temperature and then forced through the coffee grounds.

5) The ideal espresso shot delivers brown foam (referred to as "crema") to the top of the coffee as it begins to flow into your container. When the foam starts to turn white, this is an indication that the liquid with the best taste is no longer exiting the machine. Quickly remove your cup or carafe.

When looking for the proper beans to use with your espresso machine, you should know that specially selected and roasted options are found at major supermarket chains or coffee specialty shops. Serious espresso drinkers generally purchase an espresso grinder and create their own ground coffee before brewing.

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