Strictly speaking, “Turkish coffee” was first made in Egypt. But by the 16th century, both coffee and this particular coffee-making method were firmly rooted in Turkey.
Even today, coffee is still made this way...in Turkey, much of the Middle East and the Balkans.
This makes us smile, a lot. There is a certain snobbery among some gourmet coffee drinkers. So it with great pleasure and irony that one brews and serves up a small demitasse of Turkish coffee, knowing that the brewing method flies in the face of what experts today advise.
First, the coffee grounds and water are boiled together.
Second, you add sugar during the brewing process, not after the coffee is poured.
Third, no filter is used. So you end up with plenty of coffee grounds in your cup.
Milk or cream? Absolutely not.
Turkish coffee may be sweetened, but it is served black, with a natural froth on the surface.
The only equipment you need is an ibrik or “cezve”, which is a brass pot with a long handle.
As for the coffee grounds, they need to be very, very finely ground, to the consistency of talcum powder. If you have a burr grinder that will grind that fine, so much the better. Otherwise you may have to buy ground coffee specifically intended for making Turkish coffee.
Here’s what you do:
And there you have it, a perfect cup of Turkish coffee, made in the simplest manner possible, and breaking all the rules.
If this sounds different from instructions you may have read elsewhere, that's because Turkish coffee is made in many different regions and countries, and each has its own way of brewing what they consider to be the perfect cup.
I know, because many moons ago I lived in Turkey for a year and drank Turkish coffee every day. It has its own unique taste, and is nothing like your usual cup of morning joe. It is thick, sweet and very much a sipping coffee.
Do you get coffee grinds in your mouth? Yes, you do. But they are so finely ground it’s nothing like even getting espresso grinds in your mouth. There is nothing hard there. More like a soft, smooth paste.
If you have never tried Turkish coffee before, I can certainly recommend it.
About the author: Nick Usborne, aka Coffee Detective, is a writer and long-time coffee enthusiast. Read more…