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10.13.2010

Food Therapy: Vietnamese Coffee

I like pho and pork chops with broken rice, but what I really like is vietnamese coffee.  It's a thicker, stronger coffee with just the right amount of sweetness (which means it's sweet!).  Vietnamese coffee is what gets me to a pho restauarant, not pho.

You can't replicate v-coffee at home with a regular coffee maker.  In fact, you can't even really replicate v-coffee with a Moka Express (see here for more Moka Espress info: Bialetti's Moka Express).  And I won't even bother trying with a french press.

The correct coffee maker to use for v-coffee is this little handy-dandy gadget that you put over a mug/cup:


Yes...it only makes 1 little cup of coffee at a time.  It's a kind of drip method that thankfully doesn't require paper filters.


You put coarse coffee grind (approximately 2 heapings) into the bottom of the coffee maker and then hot water over the grind.  The coffee then drips into your mug via the bottom/filter.

 
(I'd like to note as this point that this little gadget comes with a lid.  I've lost that lid so I can't show it to you.  Try not to lose the lid.  It's great to use as a "saucer" for the actual coffee maker when you're done with it.  It'll collect any remaining coffee drippings and keep your tabletop clean.)

The special ingredient in v-coffee is sweet condensed milk.  Once you get hooked on sweet condensed milk with your coffee, you can kiss milk and sugar buh-bye.  Thanks to its high viscosity, sweet condensed milk helps the coffee to remain thick rather than watered-down.  I use a small cup when I make v-coffee because...well...you can't really make much with the coffee maker.  I fill about 1/4 of the cup with sweet condensed milk.

V-coffee makes perfect iced-coffee.  Just pour the v-coffee (premixed with sweet condensed milk) over ice and you'll get sweet but strong iced-coffee!!

You can buy the coffee maker at any Asian grocery store.  I recommend using Cafe Du Monde coffee grind.  Enjoy!!

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