How Does One Steam Milk Using A 'Salton' Espresso Machine (Three For All)?

Q: My mom just gave me an old Salton "Three For All" Espresso machine, and I don't know how to use the steamer! I don't even know how that side of the machine works at all (... and I used to be a barista at Starbucks). Can somebody help?

A: Use the knob above the steamer wand (spout): 1) Begin with very cold milk. It is important to keep the milk temperature right above freezing. Keep the steam pitchers in the refrigerator also. This will allow you to steam the milk for a longer period of time to achieve that smooth and velvety texture. 2) Fill the milk pitcher with the right amount of milk for one cup. You will probably have some milk left over after steaming. Start with fresh milk for every cup. 3) Place the steam wand at the bottom of the pitcher. Turn the steam on, and slowly raise the wand so that it is near the top of the milk. As the milk rises, lower the pitcher so that the steam wand remains approximately 1 cm from the top of the milk. Stretching should be minimal, no big bubbles should be formed. The key is to get smooth velvety milk, not the thick foam that floats above the Espresso. When poured, the milk should flow into and mix with the Espresso. 4) Milk temperature is critical. When the milk has reached 80 ºF, push the steam wand deep into the milk on the side of the pitcher, and position the pitcher to spin the milk counterclockwise. Continue the spinning motion until the milk reaches 150-160 ºF. Steaming milk over this temperature limits the sweetness of the milk. After stopping the steam, carefully remove from milk and clean with wet cloth. Remove thermometer from milk. 5) Swirl milk vigorously. If any bubbles are visible pound the pitcher on the counter several times. Swirl after pounding. I recommend swirling for 20-30 seconds. This can be done effectively while the Espresso is pouring.