Latte is not something new. As a matter of fact, it has been around for ages, and many people don't know that it's really easy to make one at home. Contrary to popular belief, you don't even need an espresso machine.
A Moka pot, some good coffee, a coffee frother (or a pint-sized jar), a bit of heat, and some milk are all you need. Keep reading to find detailed instructions on how to make a delicious latte at home!
How Does a Moka Pot Make Coffee?
Stovetop espresso makers are a simple yet smart way to make coffee that use steam to extract flavor out of the coffee grounds. In addition, an espresso maker also uses pressure to make the brew as well. This is why the Moka pot is often referred to as a stovetop espresso maker. In fact, espresso comes from the Italian word for "pressed out", as it uses steam to press out the coffee and make you that delicious brew.
The Moka pot was invented in the 1930s by an Italian inventor and engineer, and it hasn't changed a lot since. After all, it has four main parts: the boiler, the funnel tank, the filter plate, and the kettle.
When making coffee, you start by pouring water into the boiler (bottom chamber). Then the coffee is added into the funnel tank. When you put it on the stovetop and apply heat, the water starts boiling and producing steam. Once enough steam is produced, it pushes its way into the funnel tank and through the coffee.
When there is enough steam, the coffee goes through the tower and into the kettle. If too much steam is being produced, the safety valve opens and releases what's in excess. You know your coffee is done when you hear a gurgling sound coming out of the kettle. It's that simple.
What Actually Is Latte?
Latte comes from the Italian word for milk. While this kind of coffee with milk beverage is widely spread across Europe, the commonly used name comes from the Italian caffelatte, which means coffee-milk.
To make a latte, you don't need a fancy espresso machine. Italians tend to use a stove top espresso maker for theirs.
Another very well-known drink that is made of coffee with milk is cappuccino. While it is also of Italian origin, it is slightly different from latte.
How Is It Different From Cappuccino?
Both latte and cappuccino are coffee and milk-based hot beverages that people usually have with breakfast. On one hand cappuccino is layered and has an even distribution of espresso, foamed, and steamed milk.
Latte, on the other hand, has significantly more steamed milk. It is not layered like a cappuccino, but the milk is blended with the espresso. Moreover, latte is preferably made with espresso. While some simply use strong coffee for it, Italians don’t like that.
Usually, in a latte, the ratio of espresso to steamed milk is about 1-to-2. Then, on top of the latte, a layer of foam is usually added, although there are a few different variations, as it has become very trendy in the past 20 years. If you feel like you need that extra sweetness in your latte, you can add vanilla, pumpkin, or hazelnut flavors.
Just like you can vary the sweetness of the drink, you can make it stronger or weaker. While most people prefer it with just a single shot of espresso, if you need that extra kick, you can make it double.
What Do You Need to Make a Latte in a Stovetop Espresso Maker?
As already mentioned, a real latte is made with espresso. You can make it in an espresso maker, but an Italian will usually make it in a Moka pot.
Coffee enthusiasts will argue that to make the best latte, you need filtered water. They believe that if it's unfiltered, it will negatively affect the taste and ruin your coffee. Austrians even believe that their clean Alp water is what makes Viennese coffee so good.
We wouldn't go that far, though. Any kind of drinkable water will usually do the trick!
There is no latte without milk. Almost any type of milk will do, but it's recommended that you use 2% or whole milk. If you're vegan, you can also use almond or oat milk.
Recipes for Moka Pot Latte
Depending on whether you have a milk frother or not, there are two main approaches to making latte from stovetop espresso. As you have to make a Moka coffee before you can have a latte, we are giving you our favorite recipe!
Making Moka Coffee
If you're a beginner and you've only made a few cups of coffee, you might want to follow this recipe. If you are already an expert, though, feel free to skip this paragraph and continue to the latte part of the recipe.
- Heat some water. Even though you can start with room-temperature water, it is recommended that you pre-heat it. This is done so the coffee in the coffee filter doesn't roast while the water is heating up. If you use cold water, the coffee will likely come out bitter. When heated up to around 190-200 degrees, pour it into the boiler, right to the edge of the safety valve. To know the water is at that temperature, you should look for the tiny bubbles forming before it reaches the boiling point.
- Throw a damp towel in the freezer. You will need this to stop the extraction when the coffee is finished.
- Put some coffee in the funnel tank. The coffee you're using should not be as finely ground as the one you'd use to make espresso. In addition, you mustn't tamp it. Even though a stovetop maker uses pressure to make coffee, it is a lot lower than the one used in an espresso maker. If you tamp the coffee, it will come out bland, or nothing will come out at all.
- Heat the stovetop and put the Moka pot on it. Once you have the coffee and the water in the pot, you can start making coffee. Make sure the stove is hot when you start.
- Wait for the coffee to come out. When enough steam is built up in the boiler, the coffee will start pouring into the kettle. When you hear a gurgling sound, it's done.
- Cover the boiler with the cold towel. This will stop any more coffee from being made.
- Pour into a coffee mug.
Latte It Up
There are two recipes here. If you don't have a coffee frother, all you will need is a pint-sized glass mason jar to make a latte.
If you have a coffee frother, it is a little easier, and it will probably taste better:
- Heat the milk to around 150 degrees and froth it. Frothing it will give it this foamy texture that we all love.
- Pour the espresso into the milk. For the perfect cup of latte, you want to have 1 part espresso and two parts milk. You can use a spatula to hold back the foam.
- Put 1 tsp vanilla and 3 tsp sugar into the mug before the espresso for an extra bit of sweetness.
- For both approaches, you can add some syrup to add additional flavor.
A Moka pot is an excellent little device that can make great coffee. Not to mention that making latte in it is very simple, and it is one of the original recipes. Furthermore it is essential that you make sure you brew your coffee right, so it is not bitter. Once you have made your coffee, you should add the hot, frothed (or shaken) milk, and you're done!
One of the things you have control over when making Moka coffee is the Moka pot you're using. In order to make sure you get the best flavor out of your coffee grounds, you need a high-quality Moka pot. Head over to our catalog to check out our high-quality Moka pots!