How to brew the best home espresso
We are using a Breville Dual boiler, Breville Grinder, scales, tamp, tamp matt, O.C.D distributing tool, milk jug, and dosing cup
For this guide, we're using our Racer blend, a punchy, dark chocolate, rich coffee that creates a great espresso. All our blends are roasted for espresso extraction.
All our bags come with a recommended brew recipe on the back. The recipe for this coffee is: Dose: 22g Yield: 45g Time: 30sec
- The way to a great espresso extraction is to get three things right: Dose, Yield and Time
Dose: a measure of how much coffee we are actually going to use in our portafilter (in the group handle)
- Measure your beans: The best way to do this is to get yourself a handy set of scales - guess work can lead to inconsistency. We recommend a simple small set of scales for around $20 bucks. Small scales are great because you can use them for both weighing your dose and weighing your yield (i.e. how much is coming out.)
- Next grab your dosing cup, pop on the scales and TARE (zero-ing the weight to compensate for the cup and so weighing the coffee only) and weigh out exactly 22g of coffee beans.
- Grind the coffee: Pop the beans in the grinder, and grind the coffee on an average setting straight into the dosing cup. Next use the dosing cup lips to tip the ground coffee easily into the portafilter.
- Flatten it out: The grinds will be in a bit of a pile so just flatten it out with fingers, or use the O.C.D - a distributing tool for perfect flatness and evenly distributes the coffee grind in group handle. Even-ness is absolutely key for a good espresso!
- Tamp like you mean it: Now we are ready to tamp. Hold the group handle square to the bench on the tamp mat and hold the tamp in your dominant hand. Then firmly and as flat as you can, push the tamp down. Why tamp flat? Tamping flatly and evenly is important as it gives an ideal surface to create optimum resistance for the water to pour through in the machine, forcing the hot water to dissolve the coffee as it passes through at the correct rate.
- Time: Timing the extraction. According to our recipe, we need 45g of weight of volume of extracted coffee. And it also needs to take 30 seconds for this to happen. Breville has a timer built in which is really handy for timing the extraction.
- Troubleshooting: If it's pouring too slowly: can make coffee taste bitter and over extracted If it’s pouring too quickly: can taste sour and under extracted and watery
How do we fix these? You can fix the time of the extraction by adjusting the grinder coarser or finer to counteract this and find the sweet spot. Note: The coarser the coffee grind, the quicker it will extract. The finer the coffee grind, the slower it will extract.
Be patient: You may need to play around and make a few shots until you get this right.
HINT: Between each grind setting change, make sure you purge the grinder (ie grind some out and discard). This ensures that you get the new grind setting completely and not some of the old, which could lead to confusing results.
- The perfect extraction: When you’ve got the sweet spot, and achieved the extraction time of 30 seconds you will notice these things: the extraction will start to pour in a steady, even stream, with minimal dripping, and it will have a nice thin tail that's full of colour. You will also notice that it will slowly start to speed up and the coffee will get lighter as we approach the 30 second mark. Text book!
- Yield: by getting the time correct you will most likely have extracted the correct yield…. We now have our perfect shot: Dose 22g coffee beans in, Extracted for 30 seconds with 45g yield out.
- Now Milk: The milk that you use is the most important part of this; if you use a cheap milk you will get cheap results. You want to use a high fat and high protein milk such as Sungold Jersey milk.
Jugs: you want to use a milk jug that is the right size for the cup that you are brewing into. We are using a 360ml milk pitcher from Trenton, these are super cheap and a perfect size for one cup.
Milk Texturing: texturing the milk means that we are ‘steaming’ it evenly throughout the jug, so creating a whirlpool like motion to force little bits of air through the milk we are texturing to create a silky and creamy texture. It should look like white glossy paint, with no big air bubbles. You are aiming for a temperature of around 60 degrees celsius, you will find that at around this temp, the jug begins to get a little uncomfortable to touch.
- Now you've got your glossy cup of milk, you can try your hand at some latte-art or just pour into your cup with the shot. Ready to drink!