It’s incredible that coffee is all-encompassing and can even reflect cultural preferences. Asian Americans, in particular, are fond of lattes. One popular latte is the Spanish latte, which contains espresso, condensed milk or sugar, and scalded milk, separating it from a regular latte.
Spanish Latte Origins
It is also known as Cafe con Leche, which translates to “coffee with milk” in English. The simple beverage that Spaniards liked to drink during breakfast in the past is now a coffee house staple enhanced and combined with other elements like pumpkin spice, chai, and hazelnut.
The Spanish latte is usually compared to Vietnamese coffee, as they both use espresso and condensed milk and can be served hot or cold. You can drink it for breakfast and as an alternative to dessert at lunch or partner it with a sandwich during snack time.
Scalding Milk For Spanish Latte
An essential part of the ingredients used for Spanish latte is scalded milk. Scalded milk is a method of heating milk up to 181°F (83°C) to destroy enzymes, denature proteins, and kill bacteria. If you’re scalding your milk for a coffee beverage, you just have to look out for tiny bubbles by the wall of your saucepan before removing it from the heat.
It’s a part of the drink’s original recipe from Spain, where the milk should be scalded or hot so it can be stored at room temperature. This step is so the milk doesn’t need to be refrigerated before opening.
Spanish Latte’s Taste
Its taste is similar to that of mocha and French café au lait because of its balanced milk and coffee ratio. Spanish latte is creamier and sweeter than the regular latte, but it’s not as sweet as lattes that use flavored syrups. It’s also much stronger, more satisfying, and is very suitable to drink in the morning or any time of the day than any latte most people like to drink.
The extra sweetness in Spanish latte comes from the added sugar or condensed milk. Coffee drinkers like the texture of the frothed scalded milk on top of the latte, making it creamier and decreasing the coffee’s bitter taste. Use a darker roast coffee to make it stronger, and enjoy it while it’s hot to appreciate its unique taste and consistency.
Is Spanish Latte Healthy?
Coffee and caffeine have many health benefits, such as improving memory and mental function. Still, since the Spanish latte has sugar and milk, consume it in moderation or look for healthier alternatives.
For health-conscious coffee lovers, the calories in one cup of Spanish latte will depend on how much sweetener, milk, and coffee you’ll use. For example, a Spanish latte made with whole milk without sugar usually has 62 calories per cup. A single tablespoon of sugar has 48 calories, and a single shot of espresso, which is around 30ml, has 63 milligrams of caffeine.
Spanish Latte Ingredients
How is the Spanish latte different from a regular latte? Aside from the taste, the main ingredients of Spanish latte are different, such as what kind of water to use. Filtered or bottled water is preferred in making espresso because tap water contains high amounts of minerals that can give it a different flavor.
The best Spanish latte is made from the finest Spanish espresso. High-quality Arabica or Robusta coffee beans is recommended and should be freshly roasted into a medium or dark roast. Ensure that you have a fine coffee grind for espresso machines or Moka Pot to get the full flavor and aroma.
A great machine for your at-home espresso is the GROSCHE Milano Stovetop Espresso Maker Moka Pot which can fit into small spaces.
Whole milk is best for Spanish latte, but you can use any type of milk, including dairy-free. Remember that a traditional Spanish latte has a 1:1 milk to espresso ratio. Lastly, you can put the sugar or condensed milk at the bottom or top of the drink.
Brewing Spanish Latte At Home
Here are two easy-to-follow recipes for the traditional Spanish latte and one with an alcohol twist:
For the Spanish Latte, prepare the following:
- Espresso Machine or Moka pot
- Milk frother
- One shot of espresso
- 100 grams of scaled milk (frothing is optional)
- Two teaspoons of sugar or condensed milk
- Clean, clear glass or cup
- Scald your milk slowly. It shouldn’t be boiling.
- Brew your espresso while waiting for the milk.
- Pour the freshly brewed espresso and hot milk into a cup.
- Optional: Use a milk frother if you want a foamy texture.
- Add the condensed milk or sugar to your latte, mix it and enjoy.
For the Alcoholic Spanish Latte, prepare the following:
- One and a half cups of coffee-flavored ice cream
- One-quarter cup of condensed milk
- One-quarter cup of whole milk
- One-ounce of Kahlua
- Whipped cream
- Clear drinking glass
- Grab the blender and all the ingredients in it.
- Blend all the ingredients at medium speed until they’re combined.
- Pour the mixture into a glass and finish with whipped cream on top.
Are you interested in coffee beverages with alcohol? Check out the best options for a coffee drink with rum.
FAQs About Spanish Lattes
What Is Spanish Latte Made Of?
The Spanish latte or “Café con Leche” stood out and became different from a regular latte because of its unique taste and texture. This drink contains a shot or two of espresso, sugar, and scalded milk.
Does Spanish Latte Have Sugar?
A Spanish latte tastes similar to the French café au lait and mocha. It’s sweeter than a regular latte because of the added sweetener like sugar or condensed milk. However, it’s not as sweet as a latte with flavored syrup.
Is Spanish Latte Strong?
Spaniards love strong coffee, especially in the morning. It uses medium to dark espresso beans, which give a bitter taste. So the answer is yes, the Spanish latte is a strong coffee to drink.
What Is a Spanish Latte Coffee Bean?
Since the Spanish latte requires espresso, you will need a medium to a dark roast coffee bean. In most cases, Arabica and Robusta coffee beans are used in making espresso. Make sure to use fine coffee grinds to get the full flavor of the coffee and its aroma.