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Mixing your milk with cream for better micro-froth...?

Postby alsterlingcafe on Sun Jan 06, 2008 2:46 pm

In a search for a creamier micro-frothed steamed milk, have any of you ever tried taking whole milk and adding a cream product. From my earlier searches and tries with various types and brands of milks, I ended up right back at Ralph's Market for their whole milk. I tried the Alta Dena brand of organic whole, amongst other milks, but couldn't find a consistently "better result."

Any tricks out there for "blending your own milk".....or does it just get back to technique with your basic whole milk?

Thanks, Al
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Postby cannonfodder on Sun Jan 06, 2008 5:10 pm

I prefer light roasts and their delicate flavors. When I use whole milk, the high fat content overpowers the delicate flavors of the coffee. I usually use plain old 2% milk. If I have a bean that has powerful flavors and stands up to milk with authority, I will pick up a pint of heavy cream and add just a splash to my pitcher of 2% before steaming. If I had to guess, I would say 4 ounces of 2% with one ounce of heavy cream.

Higher fat content produces a finer bubble, or rather produces a finer bubble easier than skim milk. If I was in a latte art competition, I would use whole milk.
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Postby DavidMLewis on Sun Jan 06, 2008 5:57 pm

If you want a creamier effect, you can take non-instant powdered milk and blend two tablespoons into a quart of whole milk. The extra protein makes it easier to froth and taste creamier. Note that the product you want is the consistency of talc. The more commonly available instant non-fat milk will result in a granular texture. If you don't have someplace where you can buy it, it's available online. This is a typical product to look for.

Best,
David
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Postby alsterlingcafe on Sun Jan 06, 2008 9:37 pm

Hey Dave and David.....

When it rains, it pours, right? I've added your comments to my database and will do some experimenting with both of your additives. While my frothing and steamed milk is at a good retail level, I'm still looking for something to put it over the edge. I'm still appreciating the drinks I had in SFrancisco at Blue Bottle and also at Intelligensia in L.A. They both exhibited a creamy texture. Both were essentially true cap's at 1/3 per. Blue Bottle is using a local quality dairy called Clover, and I'll have to call over to the Silverlake store and see if they'll share their milk choice.

Ironically, we went over to friends for lunch, and the wife gave me a belated Xmas gift; she gave me one of those battery operated bar-whisks that kicks *ss on milk frothing! I would have Poo-pooed it if only described to me. But when I got home I made myself a short cap and steam-frothed a very small amount of milk for my version of a macchiatto. At the very low end of the heat range, I shut off the steam and used the little whisk.

I'm afraid, for fear of being banished, to tell you that it made some interesting merangue out of the milk. I was able to control it to where I still had my steamed milk, micro froth and then this merangue foam. It was interesting........is all I'm sayin'.

I'm going to play with it a bit more. For straight milk steamers for the kids, I'd have to say it has possibilities. The merangue froth is stiff and supports everything from chocolate ants to small bits of plywood.......(only joking about the ply.)

The experimenting will begin tomorrow with the additives. I'll hit up Trader Joe's and then Henry's for the powdered like talc non-fat milk mix.

Best, Al
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Postby quiltmaster on Mon Jan 07, 2008 3:09 pm

Hi. I'm sure you noted the sugar content in that dry milk....
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Postby alsterlingcafe on Mon Jan 07, 2008 3:24 pm

quiltmaster wrote:Hi. I'm sure you noted the sugar content in that dry milk....


I was smiling a bit when I read your comment about the sugar. I mentioned steamers for the kids and then thought about the near direct effect a candy confection has on our 5 year old grandson! Jumping over tall buildings in a single leap like Superman also applies to some children after they hit the sugar! :-) However, with steamers, by the time I add the chocolate and caramel sauce, chocolate ants and colored sprinkles..........12 grams of various sugars per serving from the dry milk may be a moot point..........?!

Best, Al
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Postby TRH on Mon Jan 07, 2008 3:47 pm

I have tried both heavy cream and Half and Half creamer added to 2% milk. We usually have half and half at home, so I use about 40% half and half added to the 2% for my wife's cappuccino.
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Postby RegulatorJohnson on Mon Jan 07, 2008 6:08 pm

id like a double 1/2 caff capp with 1/2, 1/2 and 1/2, and 1/2 whole milk, and 1/2 soy milk with 1/2 of a chocolate ant.

you still coming out al?

later.

jon
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Postby alsterlingcafe on Mon Jan 07, 2008 6:12 pm

RegulatorJohnson wrote:id like a double 1/2 caff capp with 1/2, 1/2 and 1/2, and 1/2 whole milk, and 1/2 soy milk with 1/2 of a chocolate ant. you still coming out al? later. jon


My prospective kiosk operator got through the "first 1/2" of your order, broke out crying, and ran from my office! Darn........I'll have to call her probation officer and see if there are any other candidates that want the job!?

And yes......SLC is either 2nd or 3rd on my list of trips within the next few weeks. But first, AZ. (Lucky me!)

Al
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Postby alsterlingcafe on Wed Apr 16, 2008 11:08 pm

RegulatorJohnson wrote:id like a double 1/2 caff capp with 1/2, 1/2 and 1/2, and 1/2 whole milk, and 1/2 soy milk with 1/2 of a chocolate ant. you still coming out al? later. jon


So....I thought about a new topic, but figured.........why re-invent the "question wheel?"

It's been about 3 months, and somewhere along the line I actually came up with my own milk recipe that yields a creamy texture, similar to the milk drinks I've had when I visit the San Francisco Bay area where they're using Clover Brand milks. BTW, I bought some Trader Joe's "cream on top" milk, thinking it would be the answer, but it stayed soooo permanently separated, that I ended up with a crust of butter-cream that couldn't homogenize itself back into the rest of the solution.

My "find" basically reflects what some of you have been using and had suggested......

I now mix a half gallon of Horizon Organic Whole Milk with one quart of Trader Joe's Half and Half. That's just the "accidental mix of brands" I had around the house when this epiphany hit me! I'm going to use the store Half and Half for the next batch. I'm getting the really sweet drinks that had eluded me for awhile, and the micro-froth better incorporates itself into the drink for a smooth texture from start to finish; less milk/coffee-froth separation. This seems to work for almost all my drinks.

Thanks everyone for the input, Al (And yes Regulator.....I'm going to leave for SLC within the next 3 wks or less!....Please put a Cappuccino on the Bar'by for me!)
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