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How to make the ultimate espresso. This method makes one double shot.

How to make the ultimate espresso. This method makes one double shot.

You will need:

Some delicious Bad Hand coffee (our current fave is Shaka) + espresso machine + tamper + scales (optional but handy) + timer (if you have one)

By the way, espresso machines vary more than any other method in their size and pressure, so we’ve included some helpful tips rather than a recipe.

Next-level espresso tips:

Start with a recipe
We use a 19g dose, 30 second pour time and aim for a 35-40ml yield, but this may vary depending on your basket size.

Check how much your basket can hold
Also known as the right dose weight. Loosely fill the basket with coffee and then sweep over the top with your finger to brush off any excess before tamping. This will mean that once you’ve tamped there will be enough space for the grounds to expand once the water hits them.

Tamp your grounds down
Make sure they are even and compact (a good rule of thumb is to have your portafilter, the handle bit that holds the basket, sitting firmly against the bench so it doesn’t move and then tamp until you can feel resistance).

If you tamp on a wonk or there are cracks in the coffee bed then you won’t get a balanced extraction, so take the time to do it right. Here’s a helpful graph.

Time it right
You want to aim for between a 25-30 second extraction and for your yield (the liquid coffee out) to be double your dose (the ground coffee in). This stays the same whether your dose weight is 14g or 20g, as it give enough time for the flavours to extract.

Freshness counts
If you can always grind your coffee fresh – this gives you the chance to adjust the grind size if needed and will automatically give you a tastier brew.

Having said that, if you only have pre-ground coffee then adjusting the dose will help you control the speed of extraction. Always try and tamp firmly and evenly and try to stick to the 1:2 ratio of dose to yield if possible.

Check the weight
If you weigh (both dose and yield) and time each shot then it will help you stick to a recipe easier and have more consistent shots.

Keep an eye on your puck
If your puck (the spent coffee from the basket) stays on one piece when you knock it out it’s a good sign you’re tamping and dosing well.

Further troubleshooting
When in doubt look at the Barista Hustle Espresso Compass (a lifesaver when you are stuck and can’t figure out why) – Matt Perger is a wealth of knowledge and you can spend hours nerding up on his site.

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