When it comes to coffee, and undoubtedly we are a nation obsessed with the stuff, there are so many to choice from. Yet being the creatures of habit that we are, we always go for our supposed favourite. It seems however, that lockdown has taken us out of our comfort zone and directed us to something altogether new as out top go to caffeine fix to get us through the day.

We’ll come to that in a minute, but first here’s a guide to some other regulars and how best to make them.

Regardless of which coffee we choose, what matters is how it tastes, smells, and whether or not it gives us the little hit that only coffee can. Let’s be honest, just how many of us can’t even face the day with a steaming hot cup of Joe? Or perhaps a latte, a piccolo, or maybe a long black.

We checked online to see how many types of coffee beverages there are and it turns out, there’s quite a lot. Websites vary between twenty and thirty different types, one of them even had 40. Seriously, I can’t decide what pastry to have when I go to a cafe so would have no chance with 40 coffee types on the menu.

So here is the short and sweet, keep is simple, SOUTH WALES LIFE guide to our favourite coffees, most can be made at home by the way. We’ve left the lockdown favourite till last.

Flat White

There are two types of coffee, the long black and the flat white both originated in New Zealand and Australia. For a flat white, the steamed milk from the bottom of the jug (which is usually not frothy, but creamy) is poured over a shot of espresso.

Flat White……

Cappuccino

Possibly the most popular type of coffee in the world, a cappuccino consists of three layers. The first is a shot of espresso, then steamed milk, and finally you (or the Barista) adds a layer of frothed, foamy milk. This final layer can also be topped with chocolate shavings or powder. Traditionally, Italians drink this coffee at breakfast.

Cappuccino……

Caffè Americano

Apparently, American soldiers during the Second World War made this coffee to make their beverages last longer. By all accounts it was adopted by American Baristas after the war. You can make it simply by adding hot water to a shot of espresso coffee.

Café Latte (or Café au lait)

A fairly popular option for coffee drinkers, a latte consists steamed (or scalded) milk and a single shot of coffee. It is usually quite frothy, and you’ll sometimes come across places that don’t understand the difference between this and a flat white. It can be ordered plain or with a flavour shot of anything from vanilla to pumpkin spice.

Latte…..

Instant 

Okay, coffee snobs will turn their nose up at this one, but if you need a quick fix instant coffee is still better than no coffee! Instant coffee is coffee that’s had all the water removed, leaving behind just the soluble coffee flavour. It contains slightly less caffeine and more acrylamide than regular coffee, but it contains most of the same antioxidants. Overall, instant coffee is a healthy, low-calorie drink that is linked to the same health benefits as other types of coffee.

Irish Coffee

Too many of these and you might have to have a little nap before reading on. This coffee, because this is made with Irish Whiskey, sugar, and a thick layer of cream on the top. You’re more likely to find these in a restaurant than a coffee shop, or in your own home at the moment once the kids are tucked up in bed. more often found in restaurants.

We figured Jameson, who make Irish Whiskey, probably know what goes into a good Irish Coffee. Before you tell us we’ve spelt it incorrectly, the Irish way is with an ‘E’.

And that brings us to the lockdown favourite. The coffee which we’ve all been making over the last few weeks. The kids may not drink it, but will love watching how the ingredients transform into the creamy froth. It’s a bit of an upside down coffee to be honest, and looks stunning when you make it. Definitely special with very little effort.

Dalgona 

This new star of our lockdown world came about when people were messing about with different types of coffee recipes at home. Let’s face it, we’ve all had a bit of spare time recently. Dalgona made by whipping up instant coffee, sugar and hot water into a creamy froth and adding it to either hot or cold milk. It takes its name from the Korean word for honeycomb candy, which it resembles.

It also looks lovely when it’s made, so we got our guys to come up with some pictures to get you in the mood.

This is how we make it. Three Ingredients and two really easy steps……

  • 3 tbsp instant coffee
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 400-500ml milk (we find whole milk is best)
  1. Whisk the coffee, sugar and 3 tbsp boiling water in a bowl for around 5 minutes. The mixture will turn really thick and fluffy with stiff peaks. You can do it using an electric whisk but whisking by hand is always more satisfying when the magic happens. 
  2. For hot coffee, heat the milk and pour into two heatproof glasses. For cold coffee, pour the cold milk into two glasses. Divide the coffee mixture in half and spoon evenly on top of the glasses. Serve and stir thoroughly before drinking. 

And if you want a few more ideas, here are three ways

Give it a go, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea (or coffee) but it’s great to watch the transformation when you whip the ingredients.

If like us, you’re missing your fix of cafe’s and coffee shops, here’s a couple of posters you can put on your door for a bit of fun.

And maybe one for the kids (young and old) to colour in……

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