I love my cappuccinos. With the emphasis on the MY!
You see, I love cappuccinos that are thick and creamy. I like at least a centimeter of thick, stretched milk on the top, dusted with chocolate, that I can spoon off. I also like my cappuccinos extra hot, so they’re not cold by the time I get halfway through. And I like them in a mug. So when I make them myself, I know I’m getting exactly what I want!
All too often, when I order one in a cafe, I’m disappointed. Either they’re more like a flat white, with no cream to speak of, or they have a mound of what looks like soap bubbles on the top.
Admittedly, I sometimes had days when I just couldn’t get the milk to stretch properly (using the milk wand on the cappuccino machine). Aaargh! Usually I’d throw it out and have another go.
Then (drum roll) someone at work casually mentioned that she used a coffee plunger to froth up milk for cappuccinos.
I eyed her sceptically. “But I like my milk thick.”
“It does make it thick.”
“No, I mean REALLY thick,” I said.
Sue said, “It’s thick enough to balance a spoon on the top.”
I couldn’t wait to get home and try it out. IT WORKED! It stretched the milk better than I’d EVER been able to do with the milk wand on the machine. I was ecstatic. (Thanks, Sue. I am forever grateful.)
When we’re on the road, I take along my coffee machine. I bought a smallish one, the Breville Cafe Roma. (You can get smaller ones that use capsules, but when I researched them I found some negative comments from people who complained that the coffee from a Nespresso machine was only lukewarm. Also, capsules aren’t readily available in supermarkets. HOWEVER, Colin on the Caravan & Motorhome forum swears by his Nespresso, so maybe they’ve fixed the problem?) I also have a plunger so that I can froth up the milk just the way I liked it.
I prefer coffee made with the cappuccino machine, but if space is at a premium in your van, you can easily make beautiful cappuccinos by using two plungers. (Make sure that the coffee plunger you use for milk has a removable glass beaker, or a plastic handle, NOT metal – you’ll be heating the milk in the microwave.)
- Make plunger coffee.
- In the glass beaker of the second plunger, put in desired amount of milk and heat to preferred temperature in microwave. Be careful not to boil or burn the milk, of course!
- Pump plunger up and down vigorously until milk stretches. Should go to at least double what it was (although different milk gives different results).
- Swirl it around a few times to get rid of bubbles and the milk looks thick and creamy.
- Pour in over coffee. You’ll get a nice thick foam on the top – proper cappuccino style!
Here’s a pic:
Notice the difference in the milk before and after swirling it around – it’s important to get rid of any bubbles for really thick, creamy froth.
And finally… I’ve discovered So Good Barista soy milk. This is brilliant for caravanners, because it’s in a long-life pack – but apart from that, it makes beautiful creamy coffee. That’s its whole purpose!
I have a slight dairy intolerance, so So Good Barista soy milk was a fantastic discovery – now I can drink even more cappuccino…
Just writing this has made me thirsty. It’s a while before Happy Hour… so it must be…