Monday, February 20, 2012

The Philips Saeco Exprelia

Meet the Philips Saeco Exprelia - A sleek, stylish and multi-functional espresso machine - It’s a real charmer. 

Living in Sydney’s Italian enclave meant that the Exprelia was going to have to be pretty good to compete with the quality & passion of coffee shared by our community. Well, it did - exceeding our expectations. 


Philips Saeco
Founded in Italy in 1981, Saeco has established a strong international presence in the world of coffee making. In 1985 they invented the first fully automatic bean-to-cup coffee machine and have managed to continually redefine the coffee-at-home experience for over the last 25 years.

In September 2009, Saeco International Group became part of Philips and this has helped to position Philips as a worldwide leader in coffee appliances. It’s the perfect match really. Undergoing a full rebranding Saeco became Philips Saeco in 2010 and they introduced the Exprelia Line of coffee machines into the market.

The Exprelia



The first thing you notice about this machine is that it looks great! It is compact, sleek and incredibly stylish - quickly adding a sophisticated edge to today’s modern kitchen.

Some of it’s key features include:

  • Sleek stainless steel design;
  • Fully automatic;
  • Easy to use;
  • Double boiler for instant steam;
  • Comprehensive beverage menu;
  • Integrated milk carafe - which is self cleaning & can be stored in the fridge between uses;
  • Intenza water filter - which improves the quality of the water and extends the life of the machine;
  • SBS ( Saeco Brewing System) - This allows you to adjust the fullness & intensity of the brewed coffee simply by turning the knob on the front of the machine. You can actually do this while it is brewing to adjust your coffee from mild to medium or strong;
  • Saeco Adapting System - which self-adjusts to allow all types of coffee beans (origin,blend and roast) to be used by the machine (not including flavoured or caramelized);
  • Adjustable dispensing spout - you can change the height of the dispensing spout to accommodate the cup you are using;
  • Hot water & steam dispensing;
  • Frontal access to all functions;
  • Automatic cleaning & descaling - Which we absolutely LOVE!

The Coffee
The machine has an extensive range of beverages to choose from. Whether your a purist and like your ristretto or espresso or you love to linger over a latte or frothy cappuccino, the Exprelia can do it all and it does it well.




If you do love your latte or cappuccino - you don’t ever have to worry about frothing your own milk because the integrated milk carafe does it for you, creating the perfect froth for your beverage.

Flavour is important and the Exprelia produces the perfect coffee with a definitive crema each time we use it. It is consistent and the taste is authentic. We no longer have to buy our coffee at a cafe - we just have to walk into our kitchen.

The machine allows for pre-ground coffee to be used too if that is what you prefer.

The Pro’s
Where to start? There are many great benefits to owning this machine.

This is the perfect espresso machine for coffee enthusiasts, couples and families who are passionate about their coffee. The quality of the coffee is perfect, it produces a deliciously good crema which is important when you love espresso. The fully integrated milk carafe works really well and cappuccino’s and lattes are incredibly easy to make and taste delicious.

The machine itself is very easy to use - you simply fill up the water tank on one side and place your coffee beans in the other, select your preferred coffee and it does the rest. Simple!

The Exprelia offers full customisation - allowing us to choose our favourite blend, adjust the intensity, temperature, body, crema and structure to meet our own individual tastes.

It’s compact and fits neatly on our kitchen bench. It also looks fantastic, and compliments today’s modern kitchen. With the majority of our kitchen appliances being stainless steel, it fits in perfectly.

Maintenance is straight forward and all you need to do is follow the instructions in the manual.

The machine even has a selectable eco-mode.

The Con’s
Philips Saeco have thought of everything when it comes to this machine so it’s hard to find fault with anything. Due to the compact design, the water tank (capacity is 1.5 litres) requires topping up after about 4 cups of coffee. That said, it’s easily removable so you can put it straight under the tap or simply fill it up in the machine by pouring the water in. Being the smart machine that it is, it will alert you to remind you to do this when required.

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The Rest 

Overall, we absolutely love the Philips Saeco Exprelia. It is a welcomed addition to our home. Pete now refuses to pay for coffee when out, knowing that he can produce the perfect cup at home for only a fraction of the cost. Owning this machine not only means we save money by not having to purchase our morning coffees at a local cafe but it also gives us the perfect way to finish an evening meal, particularly when we have friends or family over for dinner - a delicious cafe-quality coffee goes down well to complement dessert.

I also love it because it means that cooking with coffee has never been easier - no instant stuff here! All I do is simply brew some espresso and use that instead. Love it! In fact I have included two  recipes below for you to enjoy with your morning or afternoon coffee.


This first recipe is for Sour Cream & Coffee Walnut Cakes and I urge you to try them. They are sure to impress. The combination of flavours works brilliantly and the walnut mix reminds me of a delicious Greek walnut syrup cake Girlfriday’s mum makes, with a hint of coffee. The addition of sour cream to the cake batter results in an incredibly airy sponge which just melts in your mouth and the espresso icing just finishes them off nicely. These are sure to make a regular appearance at afternoon teas at our place in the future.


The Philips Saeco Exprelia
RRP $2,499
Available at major electrical retailers and online. Check online for competitive prices.



Sour Cream & Coffee Walnut Cakes

( Adapted from the Coffee cookbook - Murdoch Books)

Makes 10
Ingredients
60g brown sugar
75g (3/4 cup) walnuts
1 tsp finely ground espresso coffee beans
1 tsp cinnamon
115g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
115g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
2 eggs
185g (1 ½ cups) plain flour
¾ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
225g sour cream
10 walnut halves - to decorate

Icing
155g (1 ¼ cups) icing sugar, sifted
2-3 tsps freshly brewed strong espresso coffee - Thanks Exprelia

Method
Preheat oven to 180’C (350’F/Gas 4).

Grease a friand or muffin tin & line the bases with baking paper.

Place brown sugar, nuts, cinnamon and ground coffee in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles course breadcrumbs. Add 40g of the softened butter and process until well combined. Set aside.

Cream the remaining butter and caster sugar until pale and fluffy. Add one egg at a time and beat well after each. Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarb into a separate bowl.

Next, stir one-third of the flour mixture into the egg mixture and then add one-third of the sour cream into the egg mixture. Repeat until all combined.



Spoon half the mixture into the prepared tins and spread evenly across the base. Sprinkle the walnut mixture over the batter, then spoon on the remaining batter and cover evenly.

Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until lightly golden and a cake skewer inserted into the middle of one comes out clean.

Set aside to cool slightly in the tin before turning the cakes out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

Spread the icing over the cakes and top with a walnut piece. Allow icing to set before serving.


Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread
( An original recipe by The Food Mentalist)


Ingredients
100g cornflour
225g plain flour
200g unsalted butter ( room temperature)
½ tsp freshly ground espresso coffee beans
85g icing sugar (powdered sugar)
½  vanilla bean (seeds scraped)
pinch salt
½ cup dark chocolate ( chips or small chunks)

Method
Preheat oven to 150'C.
Beat butter and vanilla bean seeds until creamy.
Stir through icing sugar , ground coffee beans, chocolate and sift in flours and salt.
Form into a log and wrap in plastic wrap and place in fridge to firm up for 20-30 minutes.
Remove from fridge and cut ½ cm rounds out on a lightly floured surface.

Place rounds on baking tray lined with baking paper and bake in oven for about 30 minutes or until lightly golden.

Place on a wire rack and allow to cool completely before serving.

Shortbread will store well in an airtight container for about one week.

Enjoy x

Stay tuned for more Exprelia coffee inspired recipes over the next few weeks.

What sorts of treats do you most enjoy with your coffee?




( The Food Mentalist received The Philips Saeco Exprelia compliments of  Philips Saeco & Fleishman-Hillard)

10 comments:

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

What perfect lil treats for a coffee! Oh and off topic I know but I just had to tell you, I tried the Apple Thief cider today and thought of you-it was delicious!

Anna @ the shady pine said...

Love he sound of the coffee walnut cakes! Perfect with an espresso.

muppy said...

I want one!!!!!

Maureen said...

I was almost hankering for some cider and I get coffee. What a snazzy machine. The coffee walnut cakes certainly tick all my boxes and I will definitely make this.

Not sure how to tell my husband that I need a new coffee machine since he bought me a thermomix just last week. It's certainly worth a try! :)

Chopinand @ ChopinandMysaucepan said...

Dear Erin,

I'm not a coffee drinker although we have a Nespresso machine which I think it sadly doesn't quite live up to a good coffee at a good cafe.

Jennifer (Delicieux) said...

Some wonderful coffee treats there, I especially like the sounds of the espresso sour cream cakes. I'm always a sucker for cakes. Perfect partner for a cup of coffee.

CheezyK said...

That is a particularly good looking espresso you've got there, great crema. I'm always disturbed by the look of the milk in the advertising for these types of machines though, the layering and the bubbles are not signs of a good coffee - how does it go in real life? Do you get good milk out of it or is it just 'acceptable because it's cheaper than a shop' type of good? (Sorry to come across as such a coffee snob in my first comment but unfortunately coffee brings out the snob in me).
The cakes and shortbreads look delicious by the way :)

Sara - Belly Rumbles said...

Coffee walnut cakes, oh yum. Very sexy looking coffee maker.

The Food Mentalist said...

CheezyK - The flavour and quality of the coffee is superb. When it comes to milk the good thing about the machine is that you have the option to froth your own in a little stainless steel jug ( not included) on the side of the machine. We just picked one up from a homeware shop for a few dollars and it works a treat. Honestly, the quality is better or on par with many of the coffee shops we used to frequent.

Jennifer - Indeed it is. Hope you get a chance to try them :)

Maureen - too funny! Perhaps wait a few months until he has forgotten and then hit him up for this one too.

Sara - I agree, it is very sexy looking :)

Arash Hashimi said...

Bought one from Harvey Norman Auburn , but still waiting to receive it as they didn't have one in stock, It's been about 3 weeks of waiting.

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