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Why doesn't 1% milk foam?

Javamom

New member
May 19, 2005
35
0
SW Florida
I hate to think that the reason why the little cafe I love so much gives me a great cappuccino is because they add something to the milk and they actually cannot froth it. They use whole milk too.

I used work in a cafe..a few before starbucks..and you can froth it. Practice practice practice. The steam might have to be adjusted and make sure your equipment maintance is kept up.

I could do it with half and half and I never used more than one. The more you start with the harder it will be to get that good froth.

M :)
 

Parts Guru

New member
Jan 1, 2005
34
0
Lansale, PA
Re: re: Why doesn't 1% milk foam?

Parts Guru said:
Thanks for the answer, but you didn't shed any facts on why the milk foams differently. I use all types of milk because customers demand different types of milk. If I could, I'd use only skim or whole: you either want fat or you don't.

In any case, my thoughts are still that there are two moving variables being handled in milk: proteins and fat content. The (still unaswered) question is whether or not 1% has a protein difference or reduction compared to skim & whole.

Cheers,

~g

Here is the explanation why some liquids (including milk) will vary in their foaming characteristics:

The bubbles are form and stay in bubble shape due to surface tension. The higher the surface tension the longer a bubble will stay. The smaller the size of the bubble, the longer it will stay as bubble.

Surface tension varies based on the dissolved ingredient or ingredients present in the liquid. Such ingredients include fat, protein, gum acacia, Guar gum, or gum Arabica, methylcellulose, Egg albumen, Sago etc. These ingredients are also called stabilizers.

Stabilizers are added to increase the specific gravity of a liquid and help to hold in suspension any ingredients that will precipitate and sink to the bottom if left undisturbed.

I am just listing the ingredients (stabilizers) which will influence the foaming capacity. Variation in the percentage of stabilizers will influence the character of the liquid, which in your consideration is whole milk versus the 1% fat milk.

All of the additive stabilizers have no taste. One has to choose the stabilizer that fits the purpose for which such ingredients can, may or should be added.

Check the specific gravity of milk with which you get the best foam. If you decide to add any of the stabilizers, add just enough to match the specific gravity of the milk you prefer to use.

This is a new subject for every one interested in it. I am adding the 10 cents of information, and hope that it helps.

One last suggestion, try a frother with one % milk. I can suggest a small less expensive ($38.00) Cappuccinatore. It does a good job. If this can solve the issue without any additives or alteration to the milk, that will be the best.
Good luck.
 

dpsycho

New member
Jun 8, 2006
17
0
Ann Arbor, Michigan
First of all, this is m first post and I will like to congratulate everyoneresponsible for it. Great job!!!

I don't know for sure, but a chemist friend once told me to NEVER use reduced-fat dairy products with fat content less than 2% because the methods for extracting fat physically (with non-chemical treatment) can only do as good as 2%. So anything below 2% I assume has additives (this goes for yogurt, cheese etc).

Now maybe that is a clue for why it is hard to froth 1% milk.
Again, this was told to me some time back and maybe technology has changed all this, maybe nowadays (and espesially here in the states where people and goverment aren't so keen on what people eat, rather if they smoke) they add chemicals on every kind of milk (have you tasted milk on an organic farm?). After all, can you find whole milk without vitamin D added?
Oh yes and when I started seeing "organic" non-fat dairy products, I shuddered. That a load of crap they are dumping our -unsuspected-way.

Don't get me wrong I am not one of those "health" nuts. I just want to enjoy my life including its tastes, smells, and anything that is pleasureable.
After all I am a smoker, and at least if I die of cancer I will now why. It won't be some stupid additive labelled "vitamin D" in my milk that is suposed to be good for me!!!
 

jmeiss

New member
Dec 5, 2005
65
0
Lenexa, Kansas
Re: re: Why doesn't 1% milk foam?

mclearn said:
Thanks for the answer, but you didn't shed any facts on why the milk foams differently. I use all types of milk because customers demand different types of milk. If I could, I'd use only skim or whole: you either want fat or you don't.

In any case, my thoughts are still that there are two moving variables being handled in milk: proteins and fat content. The (still unaswered) question is whether or not 1% has a protein difference or reduction compared to skim & whole.

Cheers,

~g


Here's the best resource for explaining steamed milk, etc.

http://coffeegeek.com/guides/frothingguide
 
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