– Why when steaming/foaming milk (like for lattes and cappuccinos) does the milk taste sweeter then normal?

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– Why when steaming/foaming milk (like for lattes and cappuccinos) does the milk taste sweeter then normal?

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Energy (heat) applied to lactose, which is a complex sugar (long chain carbohydrates) activates it and breaks it down into simple sugars.

Edit- got my molecules mixed up.

Imagine your mom buys you one of those toys with the different shapes that you have to match to their corresponding shaped holes. You’re excited to start testing your hypothesis that maybe the cylinder one would fit into the star shaped hole but there’s one problem. To save money, the manufacturer left all the pieces connected with the extra bits of plastic from the mould and you have to separate them before playtime. Even though you’ve figured out that the cylinder mostly fits in the round hole, it just won’t go in because it’s connected to the square with that darned piece of plastic.

The shapes are simple sugars you can taste. The holes are your tastebuds. The heat is the scissors your dad will eventually use to separate the pieces

Milk has a sugar in it called lactose. We can’t taste it just like we can’t taste starch in potatoes but the heat from the steamer breaks down the lactose into simple sugars that are very sweet: glucose and galactose, those fit our taste receptors just right.

Caramelization, the sugars in the milk get cooked and condensed. This cooking is the same means by which we get condensed milk.

It’s because [temperature affects how you taste certain flavors.](https://misscoffeebreak.wordpress.com/2018/05/31/taste-and-temperature-taste-and-flavour/) Your ability to taste sweetness increases at the temperature increases, which is why room temperature soda tastes so much sweeter compared to cold soda even though the sugar content is unchanged. Similar with ice cream – melted ice cream tastes a lot sweeter compared to cold ice cream. You’ll find that even nondairy milks like oat and soy taste sweeter when steamed for lattes even though they don’t contain lactose and just plain sugar.