Which pitcher for whipping milk is better to buy?

After buying a coffee machine or coffee maker, the next step is usually the choice of accessories. For automatic coffee machines, this issue is not as acute as for carob coffee makers, but something will be useful for grain machines.

For example, if you bought a coffee machine with a manual cappuccinator and want to prepare milky coffee drinks, a pitcher for beating milk can make it easier for you.

A pitcher (also known as jug) is a vessel, a milkman in which a barista whips milk before pouring into cups. Used in the preparation of cappuccino, latte and other milky coffee drinks.

Immediately I will clarify that for coffee machines with an automatic or semi-automatic cappuccinator, as well as in the case of using a separate milk frother , the pitcher is irrelevant. Pitcher is useful for hand-beating milk with steam.

Milk Pitcher

The process of steam beating is not so simple, and according to statistics about 10% of users fail to cope with the manual cappuccinator of their coffee maker or coffee machine. With experience and skill on the contrary, you can beat milk with a steam nozzle even better than an automatic cappuccinator.

What is a milk pitcher?

I repeat, a pitcher is just a container, an analogue of a milkman, except perhaps in some special form. In principle, a pitcher can be made from both plastic and ceramic. The standard for beginners, which I advise you to focus on, is a metal thin-walled pitcher. 
On sale there are metal painted pitchers with non-stick coating. In principle, in order to cater to the interior, to the design of the coffee maker, they can be safely used; this does not affect the whipping process, but I personally prefer it without any coatings.

Metal is not just the benchmark. When whisking milk, it is extremely important to bring and complete the process at a certain temperature of about 65-68 ° C. Acceptable 60-70 ° C. It is within these limits that milk begins to naturally sweeten without adding sugar. If the milk is overheated above 70 ° C, then besides the lack of a harmonious candle (it disappears after 70 ° C) you get a taste of boiling, bitterness (they appear after 75 ° C). Up to 60 degrees milk may be just chilly for you, although in principle no one forbids adding 60-degree milk to a drink.

Milk Pitcher

So, in the process of whipping, you hold the pitcher by the bottom or the wall with one hand in order to feel the temperature of the milk with your hand. It is necessary to finish when the hand is tired.

The second sign of the right pitcher is form. Usually it is a slightly conical, narrowed upward flat cone with a clearly defined spout. Using this spout is not only easier (and easier to draw latte art) to pour the milk into the coffee, many barista use it as a stop for the steam nozzle – put the nozzle at an angle (and it is really better to keep it at an angle to the surface of the milk) right in this nose , additionally fixing the pitcher that allows you to distract yourself for something else.

What volume are coffee machine pitchers? How to choose a size?

Typical options: 350 ml, 500-600 ml, 1 liter. But in general, pitchers are very different, from 100 ml to 2 liters. Just these volumes – the most running.

When choosing a pitcher, it is important to understand how much milk you will usually beat in at a time. Beat for two approaches, if you drink large portions of dairy drinks, tiring. Beating up a small amount of milk in a large pitcher is uncomfortable. It is necessary to proceed from the fact that it is optimal to fill the reliever from one third to one half.

That is, roughly, a 600 ml pitcher – he is for beating from 200 to 300 ml of milk.

Whipping milk increases in volume, depending on the degree of whipping. You control the degree of whipping yourself depending on the beverage you are cooking. Coarse, whipping is maximum for cappuccino, seriously less for latte. But for simplicity, you can focus on a double increase.

So a 300-350 ml pitcher is just about two servings of cappuccino. For 500-600 ml – for two latte macchiato.

Milk pitcher sizes comparison

Here you can get that the milliliter pitcher per 100-150 is perfect for you, because you make one cappuccino for your wife and that’s it. That’s right, but a subtle moment pops up. The less milk, the harder it is to beat it correctly, without overheating. No, it is quite possible, but more difficult. Therefore, newcomers often use a more capacious vessel and beat more milk than necessary, simply because it is easier for them. Personally, I do not see much point in buying a small pitcher in principle.

The reverse is also true. Too big a pitcher is not always convenient when you need to whip a small amount of milk. If only because in this case it is necessary to thrust a cappuccinator-panarello deep inside the pitcher, and this is not always possible because of the cappuccinator’s length. For example, with the popular line of Delonghi ECP31.21 / 33.21 coffee makers, the length of the steam valve is only 9.5 cm, it’s impossible to lower it below – the pitcher rests against the metal tube of steam supply. You just can’t get to the milk and will always have to pour more than necessary.

And some coffee makers are a big pitcher contraindicated for any amount of milk. Take, for example, another popular model of home carob coffee makers – Saeco Poemia. Because of the small height “under the panarello”, a big jug there simply will not fit in or it will be very difficult to move and tilt it.

Finally, the height of the coffee maker and its cappuccino maker is important if you like to heat up the milk after beating, lowering the steam tap to the bottom of the pitcher. So before buying it is better to decide on the desired volume and take into account the dimensions of your specific coffee machine / coffee maker.

What about pitchers with a built-in thermometer?

Yes, such models exist. But it was precisely in order that I never came across the embedded one in real life. They are rare. The second subtle point, on sale, I saw only from the Chinese (for example, on Aliexpress), and I have concerns about the accuracy of such a temperature sensor. In any case, with experience, you will not have any problems with determining the temperature of milk by hand.

Yes, such models exist. But precisely in order that I never come across a pitcher with a built-in thermometer in real life. They are rare. Basically, you can purchase such models in various Chinese online stores, but I very much doubt the accuracy of these thermometers. In any case, with the experience you will not have problems with determining the temperature of milk manually.

If you are a beginner, then a good solution would be to choose a separate immersion thermometer (for example, a “branded” ILSA or some nameless analog two times cheaper). They are fairly accurate (at least a couple of those that I have tried) and can really help in the early stages of studying the technique of foaming. Then, when you feel comfortable, you can simply not use it.

Milk pitcher with thermometer

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