For Americans, coffee plays a very different role than it does for Italians or other countries around the world. But, what exactly is American coffee and how is it prepared? Many people think that it is simply a “watered down” espresso, but in reality this is not true at all. We explain all the secrets in the following article and why you should go for a good American coffee in the catering trade.
What is American coffee?
Before we talk about how to make the best cup of American coffee, we need to understand what it is. American coffee is prepared by adding hot water to an espresso. The water dilutes the espresso a little, giving it the volume of a drip, but with an espresso taste.
There is no exact guideline for how much water to use for espresso, as it depends on whether you want it longer or shorter. It is important not to confuse it with filtered coffee, which is prepared by pouring hot water over the coffee grind, and letting the extraction liquid drip through a filter.
Origins of American coffee
As we have indicated above, American coffee comes from espresso coffee, so it is logical to know its origins.
Although many believe its origins to be in America, espresso comes from the European continent, specifically from the Second World War (1939-1945). It is said that American soldiers, unaccustomed to Italian coffee with its strong flavour, began to dilute it with water, giving rise to what we know today as American coffee.
Ingredients and steps to prepare American coffee in hospitality
To prepare the perfect American coffee, you will need the following ingredients:
As you can see, it takes very little to make an American coffee. Once you have the ingredients ready, all you need to do is follow the steps below:
- First of all, the water must be boiling. If you use a professional coffee machine for catering, you don’t need to do this step, as the machine boils the water itself.
- While you add 100ml of boiling water to the cup or glass, you can prepare your espresso coffee in your catering business using a capsule coffee machine or a professional ground coffee machine, depending on your tastes and what you have available.
- We can add the espresso directly to the glass or cup where the hot water is to mix them to taste. Some people prefer to make the espresso first and then add the water. Although the order of the factors does not alter the taste, it does affect the aesthetics. If we opt for the first method, we will achieve a better preservation of the foam and it will be much more visually appealing.
Tips for enjoying your American coffee
Experts and coffee masters have a few tips to help you enjoy your American coffee even more:
- It is advisable to drink it during breakfast or during the course of the day, accompanied by a pastry.
- Try adding a dash of honey, sugar or cinnamon to your recipe and experience new flavours.
- Many recommend adding the water first and then the espresso, to give a much frothier visual effect, as American coffee has no cream.