Milk Foaming Techniques – basic rules

May 30, 2007

There is a lot of information on the Internet about foaming milk. Many people have something to say about this and not everybody agrees with certain techniques. However, if you stick to some basic rules then you can have good quality milk for Caffe Latte’s and Cappuccino’s in no time.

The most important thing that you should think about is control. You need control over the jug, so you will need to control the jug with two hands. Do not do other things whilst you are steaming your milk, focus entirely on the milk.

You are looking for milk that is around 60 to 65 degrees Celsius and that has smooth and shiny foam without any visibile bubbles.

Here are some basic rules that you should stick to:

– use fresh milk, the milk should come straight out of the fridge
– start with a clean cold jug and use the right size of jug
– steam only the amount of milk that you need. You can add extra milk if you like so you can texture longer to make the milk even smoother
– foam the milk only when it is below 40 degress Celsius, foaming above this temperature will create hard bubbles that you don’t want
– when you stretch the milk to create foam by just breaking the surface with the tip of the steam wand, do it bit by bit. You should hear the foam being created but you should not see any bubbles
– when you have stretched the milk enough and you are happy with the amount of foam then place the steam wand a little deeper into the milk. Create a whirpool inside the jug, you should see the milk moving around a lot. This will break down any existing bubbles and makes your foam smooth and shiny. There is absolutely no need to move the jug up and down, just keep it still, the angle of the steam from the steam wand does the trick for you.

And don’t forget to turn the steam off before you take the steam wand out of the jug.

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