Do not feel like drinking some regular boring coffee? There is a wide range of coffee types and one of them is a perfect alternative for you – delicious, smooth, and delicate cappuccino. Believe us; it will capture your heart from the first sip.
If you want to learn more about this magical drink? this article is for you. Here you can find information about this drink, its history, ways to make it, and other useful facts.
What Is a Cappuccino
Cappuccino is known as one of the most popular coffee drinks in its motherland – Italy and worldwide. This hot coffee-based beverage is so popular because of its thick and smooth layer of milk foam. Usually, its volume is about 6 oz and the list of ingredients contains only 3 points – one shot of espresso, milk, and milk foam. Each ingredient is added in an equal amount.
Of course, nowadays, various cappuccino options differ in volume and additional ingredients. Many coffee drinkers love coffee acid, but cappuccino is perfect for you if you aren’t one of them. That is another reason why this drink is so popular all over the world. It gives coffee lovers lots of flexibility. You can add cream instead of milk to your cappuccino or put there additional flavorings or syrups. While drinking the same coffee drink every day, you can make it taste different easily. You can even pour it into the travel mug and pack your stainless steel mug in your travel bag.
Benefits of Drinking a Cappuccino
As we already mentioned before, many people like cappuccino and really enjoy it but not so many people know that it is not only delicious. The point is that cappuccino is very useful and has a bunch of benefits. Numerous researches prove the numerous health benefits of this coffee drink.
Lots of Antioxidants
According to some researches, coffee contains two antioxidants that are polyphenols and hydrocinnamic acids. Due to these antioxidants, our bodies can better deal with different diseases. You need to brew a cup of cappuccino and enjoy it to become healthier.
Do you know that 1 cup of cappuccino in the morning can improve and boost your short-term memory? Different researches claim that people who drink a coffee cup every day have a better memory than others. It contains caffeine that improves the work of those parts of our brain that are responsible for memory and concentration.
Great Fat Burner
While containing more calories than a regular coffee, cappuccino still can help you burn some fat. The reason for it is, for sure, caffeine. Most supplements that can help you lose weight contain caffeine as it can significantly increase your metabolism. Of course, you will not become slim just by drinking coffee, but it can help you greatly.
Perfect Way to Feel Fresh
If it is hard for you to wake up early in the morning and get ready for the day, a cup of freshly made cappuccino is exactly what you need. As usual, the reason for it is caffeine. It will give you some energy and help you feel fresh, active, and ready for the day. Want to feel active and fresh every morning? Just start your day with a cup of cappuccino.
How Does a Cappuccino Work
As it was mentioned before, cappuccino is a coffee drink with warm milk and smooth milk foam. The perfect classic ratio of ingredients for this drink is 1:1:1. It means that ⅓ of your cup should be coffee, ⅓ – milk, and ⅓ – milk foam.
According to Italian standards, you need one double-shot of espresso to make a perfect cappuccino. One other important thing about cappuccino is a thick layer of milk foam with a very smooth texture.
Most people think that foam has no special purpose for a cappuccino, but the truth is that it is vital. It appears when the milk is heated and it means that the milk has the right temperature and taste. Also, it makes cappuccino smooth but not too creamy. This milk foam is also called a microfoam. It should be very thick and smooth with a slight sweetness and tiny airy bubbles. When drinking cappuccino, you should feel espresso richness and foam thickness, and sweet taste.
If your coffee has a strange taste that seems burned, it means that the milk was overheated or the espresso was brewed for too long.
Short History of Cappuccino
Speaking of the history of this coffee drink, it is really interesting. The drink got its name due to its brownish color that resembles the color of habits that are worn by Capuchin friars. This beautiful brownish color appears when milk is added to espresso.
Another name for this drink is Kapuziner. In the 1700s in Vienna, locals called such a coffee drink with whipped cream and spices. However, only in the 1930s, cappuccino gained its popularity outside of Italy. Since then, it has spread around the world pretty fast.
Pros and Cons of Cappuccino
Prevents Heart Issues
Like any other coffee drink, cappuccino is full of different antioxidants useful for your body, especially your heart. According to different studies, coffee is useful for people with diabetes and heart disease as it reduces the chances of early death.
Lowers Stroke Chances
People with higher chances of getting heart stroke can drink cappuccino to reduce it. The studies show that by drinking coffee twice a day, you can reduce the chances of getting a stroke by 20%
Prevents Type 2 Diabetes
Drinking coffee may help our body resists insulin, which means that people who drink coffee have lower chances of developing type 2 diabetes. The reason is that coffee contains minerals and antioxidants that block proteins that may cause diabetes.
Since coffee has a positive influence on our short-term memory, it helps our brain work better and lowers the chances of dementia by 65%.
If you have issues with digestion, coffee can be a real helper for you. The reason is that caffeine stimulates our digestive system making it work better.
If you have frequent headaches due to blood pressure, cappuccino may help you reduce them significantly. The reason is that caffeine can widen blood vessels and lower the pressure inside them.
Great consumption of caffeine that is contained in cappuccino may lead to tension, anxiety, sleeplessness, and restlessness.
Increase of Blood Pressure
As we said, coffee may lower your blood pressure, but if you drink too much, it may have the opposite effect that will result in a headache.
Types of Cappuccino
Due to its popularity and widespread, cappuccino got a bunch of variations and different recipes.
A traditional recipe includes two shots of espresso and the same amount of milk and milk foam. However, each barista makes his own changes; that’s why this drink may have different tastes in different places. Usually, it is some minor changes, but you can also find recipes with significant additions that can be considered different drinks.
Iced cappuccino is also called cappuccino Freddo. Basically, it is a cold version of a standard cappuccino. It is made with cold, frothed milk in Italy, and in the USA, ice is usually added there. By the way, you can try drinking nitro coffee if you want to have something cold.
Wet cappuccino is also known as Cappuccini chiaro or light cappuccinos. It is made with more hot milk instead of foamed milk. It has lots in common with Latte and tends to be creamier.
Dry/dark cappuccino or Cappuccini Scurro is less creamy and contains more foam and less milk. It has a stronger coffee taste and darker color. You can try the best French roast coffee to make it even stronger.
This variation of cappuccino is especially popular in the USA. Usually, it contains various flavored syrups of your choice. The most popular options are vanilla, chocolate, peppermint, cinnamon, raspberry, and caramel. Also, it may contain powdered cocoa, cinnamon, caramel, and different sweet sauces.
Cappuccino in Italy vs in Western World
As we mentioned before, cappuccino in Italy significantly differs from cappuccino that you can try around the world. Now, it is time to find more about those differences.
Cappuccino in Italy
It is only about 25 years since cappuccino became popular in the USA. That is why most people think that it is a relatively new drink. However, the truth is that it has a long-lasting history and is known for many centuries in Europe and specifically in Italy. Europeans prefer drinking it while having breakfast or in the first part of the day. Italians think that it is unhealthy and not right to drink cappuccino after dinner and prefer having espresso during the day.
Italians use espresso machines to make cappuccino and usually, this process requires some specific skills. There are specially trained people – baristas – who make this drink. To make cappuccino, you need to make espresso. After it, you need to prepare milk, so pour it in a special metal mug and heat it using a special wand that shoots pressurized steam that creates the smooth foam. During this process, the volume of the milk can become twice bigger. Finally, espresso is poured into a preheated cup and then milk and foam are added there.
One other interesting thing about cappuccino in Italy is that it is often served to children as it is creamy with milk and less strong than espresso.
Cappuccino All Over the World
When this coffee drink started to gain popularity worldwide, the meaning of the word cappuccino changed. Nowadays, there are numerous coffee shops and convenience stores that offer their own versions of cappuccino. Some of them have nothing in common with original Italian cappuccino. Usually, these versions of cappuccino are made with dispensing machines that make different hot drinks. The point is that they tend to use regular brewed coffee or even a powdered espresso-milk mixture to make cappuccino.
Nowadays, many coffee companies do their best to offer authentic cappuccino around the world. As a result, during the past 10 years, the quality of this drink around the world improved significantly.
How to Make a Cappuccino
You’ve already learned a lot about this delicious coffee drink and it’s time to move from theory to practice. If you are a lucky owner of an espresso machine, you will easily be able to make cappuccino at home. For example, the SCAA coffee machine meets the highest quality standards. Of course, you can use other options; for example, BPA free coffee makers are non-plastic and safe, but the result may differ.
Below, you can find a simple step-by-step guide on how to make a perfect cup of authentic Italian cappuccino so you can enjoy it every time you want.
First of all, before starting making cappuccino, you need to prepare all the required equipment and ingredients:
- Espresso machine
- Milk steamer (optional)
- Milk pitcher (stainless steel mug)
- 6-ounce cappuccino cup
- 16.5 grams of the world’s best black coffee
- 3-4 ounces of milk
By the way, you can order beans online; for example, Amazon offers fast delivery on their coffee selection.
Before starting the process, you need first of all to prepare all the ingredients. And the first thing you need to do is to make sure you have enough ground coffee. If you have whole beans, then ground them. Make sure there is enough ground coffee for 15.6 grams of espresso. It is better to use scales for coffee beans to learn to measure your coffee precisely.
Step 1 – Brew espresso
As soon as all the ingredients are ready, it is time to brew your espresso. Take your ground coffee and place it inside the portafilter. Insert it into your espresso machine and start the brewing process. Make sure to choose proper settings so you can get 2 shots of espresso. You can brew espresso right in your cappuccino cup; don’t forget to preheat it.
Step 2 – Steam milk
When you started the brewing process, you can move to the next step that is steaming milk. Just keep in mind that it requires some good technique. The most important thing is that you need to keep it vertically and slightly tilted and move it up and down slightly and slowly. Also, it is important to make sure that you not overheated the milk. Its temperature should be no higher than 160°F. One other important thing is that you need to create that smooth foam. To do it, you need to keep the tip of the wand almost on the surface, dipping it slightly. Just be very attentive as the milk will grow in volume very fast. Also, there must be not only froth but enough steamed milk as well. You can use these instructions to make the milk for the cafe latte as well.
Step 3 – Pour milk
As soon as your espresso and milk are ready, it is time to move to the final step. First of all, pour the espresso into your cappuccino cup. The next step is to add milk and you need to be careful when doing it. First of all, make sure to keep the pitcher 3 inches above the cup. Use a slightly circular, vertical motion to pour it into the cup. In such a way, you will be able to create a perfect mixture of milk and espresso. The last ingredient poured into the cup is the foam that will create a fluffy coat on top of your drink.
If you want to create a perfect authentic Italian cappuccino, you need to follow some pretty simple rules. The most important thing about this drink is the proportions of the ingredients. You need to have an equal amount of espresso, milk, and foam. If you want to make a bigger portion of the drink, you need to increase each ingredient’s volume equally.
Those who want to make creamier cappuccino known as wet need to add 6 extra tablespoons of milk.
The list of ingredients includes:
- 6-ounce cappuccino cup
- 16.5 grams ground espresso coffee
- 3-4 ounces of milk
Using these ingredients and following the steps from our guide from above, you will be able to make a cup of perfect cappuccino at home.
Cappuccino vs Similar Coffees
While being a separate type of coffee drink, cappuccino has some pretty simple cousins and can be easily confused. The list includes such coffee drinks as Macchiato, Cortado, and Flat White. However, the truth is that all of them have some significant unique features that differ them.
Cappuccino vs Macchiato
Macchiato is one another popular espresso-based drink. It is smaller than a cappuccino and contains only two ingredients instead of three in cappuccino. It is made of one shot of espresso and some milk foam. Due to the fact, there is no steamed milk; it is stronger and more concentrated than a cappuccino.
Cappuccino vs Cortado
In contrary to Macchiato, Cortado contains milk instead of milk foam. It has only two ingredients out of three that are used to make cappuccino. Usually, it is made of 2 ounces of espresso and 2 ounces of steamed milk. It has a stronger taste than a cappuccino but not as strong as Macchiato has.
Cappuccino vs Flat White
Flat White is the closest one out of these three espresso-based drinks to cappuccino. As well as cappuccino, it consists of espresso, steamed milk, and foam. However, it has different proportions. Usually, it contains 2 shots of espresso, 2-3 ounces of milk, and just a little foam to cover the drink.
It has a more velvet texture in comparison with Cortado due to the foam. However, it is rougher than cappuccino as the second one contains much more microfoam than Flat White.
Do’s And Don’ts With a Cappuccino
- Drink cappuccino in the first part of the day.
- Drink some water before and after your cup of cappuccino.
- Use espresso to make your cappuccino.
- Do not forget about the right proportions of the ingredients.
- Never overheat the milk.
- Do not forget about smooth, airy foam.
- Do not drink cappuccino in the evening.
FAQ About a Cappuccino
Is cappuccino stronger than a latte?
If it is an original cappuccino, it will have a slightly stronger taste than Latte. The reason is that Latte usually contains more milk than a cappuccino.
Is a cappuccino sweet?
The authentic cappuccino has an absolutely mind-blowing texture and taste. It is a perfect mixture of espresso boldness, smoothness, and slight natural sweetness of the milk. However, if you prefer it sweeter, you can add sugar, syrups, and other sweeteners.
Is cappuccino healthier than coffee?
In comparison with a regular black coffee or espresso, cappuccino is for sure has more calories. Usually, every 8 oz of cappuccino contains about 2 calories and if you prefer adding any sweeteners, this number can be even bigger. By adding sugar or cream, or both, you will add at least 20 extra calories to your cup of cappuccino. If you are on a diet and still want to enjoy a cappuccino cup, it is better to avoid any additions. The cappuccino contains more calories than espresso because it contains milk. The point is that coffee drinks contain at least 110 calories and 6 grams of fat per cup. And if you add something like cocoa or syrup, it will contain even more calories.
Do you drink the foam in a cappuccino?
It depends on your preferences. However, believe us, it is worth trying due to its incredible texture and rich taste. You will, for sure, enjoy it.
Cappuccino is an incredible coffee drink that will, for sure, capture your heart. Its rich taste and velvet texture are unforgettable. Just try it once, and you will understand why it is one of the most popular drinks worldwide. And the greatest thing is that with just some practice you can enjoy it at home any time you want.
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