Stainless Steel Moka Pot – Get Yours While You Still Can

stainless steel moka potThe Bialetti Classic Stainless Steel Moka Pot coffee maker – this iconic espresso maker is known to be in every house in Italy. But the news is out now that the Italian company, Bialetti, is facing possible bankruptcy. Our days to get an original Italian Bialetti moka espresso pot may be numbered.

Moka Espresso Pot

I originally bought one of these little beauties to take with me camping. You use it right on the stove or campfire, it’s small and sturdy, and makes a delicious espresso coffee.

Bialetti started making these in 1933, when the economy was struggling and people couldn’t afford to drink their espressos out as often. This easy little espresso maker is affordable and makes a delicious espresso right at home. It has become the mainstay of Italian homes – it is claimed that every home in Italy has one of these. When I heard that, I bought mine and have loved and used it ever since.

Now, with Starbucks and coffee shops opening in Italy, with automatic one-cup coffee and home espresso makers, like Nespresso and Keurig, Bialetti is losing sales and struggling. Let’s hope and pray they do not go bankrupt! Here is the news story where you can find more information.

Moka Pot vs French Press

I use both my Bialetti moka pot as well as my French Press, and my Mr. Coffee Cafe Cappuccino Maker. When I compare the moka pot vs French Press, overall the strength and taste of the coffee is similar. With the moka pot, you get a generally higher and stronger, more espresso coffee. French Press makes a delicious regular coffee. But with each of them, how strong the coffee is depends on how many tablespoons of grinds you put in, how strong is the coffee bean you’re using, which type of bean (espresso roast or regular roast), etc. The moka pot obviously works better for camping than the French Press, since it is a stainless steel moka pot instead of a glass container.

I like that with the moka pot it brews and then you immediately pour and drink, nice and hot. With the French Press, the coffee sits in the grind for at least three minutes, sometimes up to five depending on your preference, so you have to find a way to keep it hot. I usually pour my French Press coffee into a pre-warmed coffee thermos – I can then pour and drink at my leisure, and it remains pretty hot, but not as steaming as pouring it directly the brew from the moka pot.

The other main difference is that the moka pot only makes a small amount of espresso, depending on which moka pot size you have, whereas the French Press makes several American mugs of coffee each time. French Presses also come in several sizes, but most people use the standard size.

There is also the difference in how the coffee is made. The moka pot percolates your coffee, infusing the grind with moving, boiling water – which I think makes a more delicious and smooth cup of coffee. The French Press has the boiling water poured over where it then sits with the grinds in a more static infusion.

As far as timing for your coffee, the moka pot is slightly quicker. My moka pot takes about three-five minutes, depending on how hot the heat source is, before the water percolates up into the upper chamber. The French Press takes a while for you to get water boiling, depending on how hot your heat source is, then it sits for 3-5 minutes, so it takes a little longer.

The Moka Pot is easier to clean, too. None of it goes in the dishwasher. The three components come apart easily and you simply rinse under hot water – it is a stainless steel moka pot, so very simple. With the French Press, I usually rinse it out, too, but the glass doesn’t clean as easily as stainless steel. Occasionally I remove the glass part and run that and the filter lid through the dishwasher.

Moka Pot Sizes

Like most Europeans, the Italians drink tiny cups of strong espresso. So you’ll find the 1-cup Moka espresso pot, making 2 oz of espresso to fit a tiny espresso cup. Then there’s the 3-cup size stainless steel moka pot, which makes 4.4 oz of espresso – enough for 2 espresso cups, or one small American cup of coffee.

For myself, I chose the 6-cup moka pot, as it makes about two cups of American-size coffee, just enough for me, and is a comfortable size to take camping at 4″x4″x 9″ tall. It produces 9.2 oz of coffee. Keep in mind, when I say it makes me two cups of American size, I tend to drink from a slightly smaller coffee cup than most Americans. If you’re using the large coffee mug popular in the US, this 6-cup moka pot will probably fill one of those with a little left over to top it off.

From there you can choose the 14.2 oz moka pot for espresso, it fills two large American coffee mugs. Lastly Bialetti offers the 12-cup moka pot, making 22.7 oz of espresso – just under three full American mugs. This one is for gatherings and is 11″ tall.

Moka Pot Instructions

Using the moka pot for espresso is very easy. First you unscrew the top chamber from the bottom chamber. Remove the filter piece. Pour water into the bottom chamber up to the fill line. Nestle the filter piece in, and put as many tablespoons of coffee grinds as you like – I usually use 1 Tablespoon per cup of coffee – so about 2 Tablespoons in my 6-cup Bialetti Moka Espresso Pot. I recommend a medium grind, same as for the French Press.

If you like to add a sprinkling of cinnamon or other spice, as I often do, put it on your grinds. Next just screw on the upper chamber.

Place the moka pot on your stove or campfire, whatever you’re using for your heat source. I put my stove at about the 6:00 position – medium heat. Then you wait. After about five minutes or so, you’ll hear it percolating into the upper chamber. I lift the lid to check when the upper chamber is full, then I know it’s done. Remove it from heat, pour and enjoy.

Grind Coffee Moka Pot

Various coffee makers work best at different grinds of coffee. For the moka pot I recommend a medium grind of coffee beans, like you would use in any espresso maker.

Do you use a Bialetti or other moka pot coffee maker? Please comment below how you like it, how you think it compares to French Press coffee, and any other thoughts below.

Where to Buy a Moka Pot Coffee Maker

I bought my stainless steel moka pot coffee maker at Amazon.com

You can also get it directly from the manufacturer at www.Bialetti.com

 

 

Kona Purple Mountain Coffee

I ran into someone who said the best tasting coffee they’ve ever had is Kona Purple Mountain Coffee. I was excited to try it, so I ordered it off of Amazon. It took over a week to get to me from Hawaii. Kona Purple Mountain Coffee is organic and naturally made and roasted on the mountains of Hawaii, so already I was impressed.

Note, there is a separate company called Kona Mountain Coffee with shops in Hawaii, but I’m reviewing here Kona Purple Mountain Coffee, a brand of coffee bean made in Hawaii.

Kona Purple Mountain Coffee

Upon opening the bag I delighted in the lovely fresh coffee aroma coming from the beans. I ground some and made coffee, trying it in my Bialetti Moka Pot as well as a French Press, and later I used it in my Mr. Coffee Cafe Cappuccino Maker.

This company, Kona Purple Mountain, started in 1976 and is a family-owned coffee estate. They grow 100% pure organic beans in the high altitude of Honaunau Mountain at 2,000 feet. The farm is located on the western slope of Mauna Loa, on the kona side of the Big Island of Hawaii. They have an optimal prime location for growing excellent beans. They do all the processing themselves using traditional methods, from harvesting to shipping. The beans are sun-dried on “hoshidana,” a wooden platform deck with an obviously Japanese name. The hoshidana is covered with a thick plastic greenhouse tarp to protect the beans from the afternoon rains. They add no chemicals or pesticides of any kind. The coffee is roasted fresh right at their farm.

On their website you will find lots of photos of the steps they do to make this delicious coffee.

They are certified organic, which means no blends, flavors, pods or decaf. The beans are 100% sun dried and hand-picked and they offer green or roasted coffee beans.

Their motto is “With passion and respect for the aina (land), we practice sustainable organic farming and are “Certified Organic.” Their philosophy alone is worth giving this company our coffee-loving support.

What is Kona Coffee, exactly?

Kona coffee refers to coffee specifically cultivated on the mountain slopes of Hualalai and Mauna Loa. These are found in the North and South Kona Districts of the Big Island. Kona Coffee is one of the most expensive coffees to buy in the world today. Only coffee grown in the kona districts are allowed to use the prestigious name. The ideal conditions for growing coffee stem from the sunny mornings, the rainy afternoons, mild wind and nights, and the volcanic soil rich in minerals. There is nowhere else just like this for growing the unique coffee.

Because of the price of pure kona coffee, some merchants sell “kona-blends.” Be aware that these are kona coffee blended with less expensive coffee, like Colombian, Brazilian or other coffees from around the world.

The word kona is the name of a southwesterly winter wind in Hawaii. This kona wind is usually strong and it brings rain.

Another company, voted by Forbes as having the best kona coffee in the world, is Koa Coffee – be sure to check them out. I’ve read that each kona farm produces their own distinct arabica coffee bean, the micro climate of each farm plays a part. So trying out the various kona coffee company’s beans would be a fun and interesting challenge.

Save on Kona Coffee when you buy a Triple-pack!

Unusual Taste

Before this I’d been drinking dark Turkish coffee and some Lavazza, my favorite. I also enjoy Bustelo Cuban Coffee and Starbucks, all of which sport a smoky coffee flavor. Starbucks’ coffee beans have a dark, slightly burnt taste.

With Kona Purple Mountain Coffee (I got medium roast), I noticed right away it has a completely different flavor profile. At first I didn’t like it at all, but I’m getting used to it and starting to enjoy it now. It has a kind of brassy, coppery tone to it, almost like caramel. At first it reminded me of cheap coffee I’ve had at places like Village Inn, or like Maxwell House. But this coffee is expensive to buy. I wonder if this flavor profile comes from it drying in the Hawaiian sun, and from the volcanic soil? Or maybe because this is a medium roast?

It is still a strong coffee, like the others I’m used to. Now that I’m adjusting to the different taste, I’m starting to quite enjoy it. It is kind of caramelly, a flavor I often prefer in my coffees.

I’ve read warnings that many companies will try to trick you by using the word “kona.” Be sure to double-check if the beans you are ordering are actually grown in the kona districts of Hawaii.

Have You Tried It?

Let me know, in the comments below, if you have tried Kona Purple Mountain Coffee (or any kona coffee brand) and if you understand what I mean by the different taste profile.

It took me a few cups to come around, but I am starting to enjoy this unusual taste. I like to add some kind of creamer, either coconut creamer from the store, or my homemade cashew milk creamer, along with some caramel-flavored liquid stevia. The caramel stevia enhances the slightly caramel taste of the coffee and they go very well together.

If you have tried other kona coffee brands, please leave your impressions in the comments below. Do they all have the same, basic taste profile? It would be fun to compare.

Monthly Coffee Club

This family-owned business offers a monthly Coffee Club. It’s a standing monthly order that gets charged to your card and shipped out the 1st of every month. Your regular order is sent out, but you can contact them anytime to add to or change your order, if you wish. With this club you will get a discounted price on the coffee.

Where to Buy Kona Purple Mountain Coffee.

Other Trustworthy Kona Coffee Brands Recommended to Try.

  • Koa Coffee
  • The Hawaiian Coffee by Keala
  • Volcanica Coffee
  • The Hawaii Coffee Company
  • The Koa Coffee (Peaberry Kona)

 

 

 

 

Compostable Keurig pods – Yummy Southern Pecan

  At last! Coffee makers are coming out with compostable Keurig pods / K cups. Waste was one of my biggest factors against owning a Keurig. But I love using one, they are so convenient and awesome.

I recently got to try Cameron’s Southern Toasted Pecan, in compostable K cups coffee pods. (Yes, it’s technically a pod, but people are used to calling all things Keurig as “K cups.”) I found mine in Safeway, but Amazon.com carries it, too.

Toasted Southern Pecansouthern-toasted-pecans

I love flavored coffee. I don’t buy my dad’s maxim that “People who want flavors in their coffee, don’t like coffee.” Truth is, I love coffee, just the regular flavor of delicious coffee. But I’m also a culinary adventurer, and I love nothing more than to try new flavors in all of my foods and drinks, especially coffee (well, duh, hence this site).

Keurig Compostable Cups for Coffee

We now have more and more choices for compostable Keurig pods and compostable K cups for our Keurig coffee. I discovered Cameron’s Southern Toasted Pecan, it was on sale, so I decided to give it a try. (I was staying at my friend’s house and enjoying her Keurig.)

No After-taste

One of the problems I have with the various Starbucks K Cups flavors, is that many of them have a nasty after-taste. It’s similar to the after-taste you get when you add too much Stevia. This is found only in some of their flavors. Others of their flavors taste better without any cream or milk, by the way. You will have to experiment to see which you like best.

Cameron’s Toasted Southern Pecan has no after-taste. It is pure deliciousness with the nutty sweet flavor of pecans, like what you get in homemade Pecan Pie (one of my favorites). The aroma alone will delight your senses as it is brewing into your cup.

Compostable Keurig Pods

This is the best part – the coffee pod is compostable. Note the fine print, however, to double-check with your own composting rules in your community, some places are equipped and some may not be, just yet. Also, it is not suitable for backyard home composting. But in the town where I was staying, they compost everything, even meat and bones, so I knew they could handle a compostable coffee K cup.

More to Come in Compostable Coffee K Cups

With more companies offering compostable K cups for coffee, our caffeine habits are getting greener every day. This is great news.

Have you tried some Keurig compostable cups or pods? Tell us in the Comments what you think and which are your favorite.

 

 

 

Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Review – Espresso, Cappuccino & Latte Maker

After my Delonghi Cappuccino Maker bit the dust (I consistently tamped too hard, which ended up breaking the machine over 2-3 years), I researched a new replacement cappuccino maker. After looking over many options, including some pod machines, I settled on Mr. Coffee Cafe Latte Maker – it makes espressos, cappuccinos and lattes!

My Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Review

I’ve been using Mr. Coffee Cafe now for eight months – I got it at Christmas 2017. I was a little concerned about getting it at first, because one reviewer on Amazon said that it suddenly started curdling their milk, making a huge mess. Then I remembered that the only thing which curdles milk is heat and vinegar – I concluded that the user must have run vinegar through their machine to clean it, and some residual vinegar must be remaining in the machine. No other reviewer has had that problem.

Noisy Cappuccino Makers

My Delonghi Cappuccino Maker was great, but it was very loud, and sometimes we have guests trying to sleep near our kitchen, so noise is a concern. The main reason I did not get the newest Delonghi was because several reviewers mentioned that it vibrated so powerfully it moved the whole machine along the counter, causing the coffee cup to fall of it, etc. So I knew I did not want that.

I asked in the questions about Mr. Coffee Cafe, and was told it was not loud.

They were wrong. I love my Mr. Coffee Cafe, but it is very loud. Not only is it loud when you pull your espresso shots, but if you make a cappuccino or a latte then you have to run it a second time for it to self-clean steam through the nozzle. That part is just as loud, too. I concluded, having tried several cappuccino makers, that generally they are all loud.

Let me know in the comments below if you find one that is quiet like a cat’s purr.

Mr. Coffee Cafe

My favorite part of this machine is, of course, that it automatically steams and froths your milk directly into your mug – no more having to do that extra step with the extra cleaning involved. It’s really fun to watch the milk froth and pour into your mug before your espresso shots pull in – even if you don’t have a clear, glass coffee mug as shown in the product video.

cappuccino bird
Can you see the bird?

Every morning I have either a cappuccino or a latte, then when I stir, the foam forms a picture. I enjoy seeing which picture I can make out every morning – like cloud watching.

I enjoy an occasional espresso late in the afternoon.

Be aware that the lights will blink while the unit is heating up. It only takes a minute or less, but you have to wait for the lights to be solid and not blinking before it is ready to use.

I love that you can choose to push a simple button for espresso, cappuccino or latte and let the machine do the work. Or you can manually pull your espressos, manually add extra froth, as much or as little as you want, if you choose to hand-craft your coffee.

Espresso, Cappuccino and Latte!

None of my previous cappuccino machines made latte, too. I love making lattes, they are so delicious. Keep in mind, though, that lattes use a LOT of milk, so you’ll run through your milk very fast.

This machine works equally well with cow’s milk as well as nut milk and creamers. When I make my own homemade cashew milk creamer, I just have to make sure it’s liquidy enough and not too thick, which will clog and strain the machine. You will learn over time which milks make the best froth. Cow’s milk wins every time, but coconut creamer does a great job as does my cashew creamer. Almond milk and creamer makes almost no froth and doesn’t taste good in coffee.

I’ve made 1-4 coffees a day since last Christmas, and my machine is working perfectly. Cleaning is easy. After I use up all my milk in the milk container, I rinse out the top mechanical part well and run the bottom, clear container through my dishwasher (or hand-wash it).

On a daily basis, when you are done making your coffee, you pull out the milk container and store it in the fridge – remember to do that every time!

Also, one user suggested buying a replacement little rubber tube piece (part of the top milk container) in case you lose or break it, so that you can keep making coffee. That clear rubber tube pops off for easy cleaning. I haven’t followed this tip because I have four other ways to make my morning coffee, so I’ll buy a replacement if and when I need one.

Also, make sure to keep an eye on the water tank in the back of the machine – don’t let it ever get below an inch. I accidentally tried to pull a coffee when my water tank was almost completely empty – I panicked and filled it while the machine was running, and I haven’t yet seen any adverse effects. But generally you never want this to happen!

Mr. Coffee Cafe Latte Maker

Mr. Coffee Cafe Cappuccino and Latte Maker comes with a cute little recipe booklet with all sorts of fun recipes for espressos, cappuccinos and lattes, including alcoholic drinks. I’ve tried a few and they are a lot of fun. Be sure to experiment with your favorites roasts, grinds and brands of coffee, and share any recipes you’ve come up with below.

You can buy the Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker on Amazon.com. Be sure to watch it – sometimes the price goes down to a great sale. But even at its full price this machine is worth it.

 

 

 

Where to Buy Lavazza Coffee – Best No Sugar Coffee

I was speaking with my accountant. She was drinking an espresso, black.where to buy lavazza coffee

“I can’t do that,” I said. “Black coffee is too bitter for me, I need sugar at least.”

“This is Lavazza,” she answered. She explained that Italian-made Lavazza coffee is so smooth you can drink it without any sugar and it’s not bitter.

I tried it and it’s now one of my absolute favorite coffees of all time – one of the best coffees in the world, I would say. You CAN actually drink Lavazza black without any sugar added. (It’s also good with sugar and cream.)

Here’s where to buy Lavazza coffee.

1st in Coffee

The awesome coffee website 1stincoffee offers many choices for Lavazza coffee. As always I recommend buying whole beans and grinding them yourself for the best coffee experience. But you can purchase Lavazza ground as well as whole bean.

I like the Super Crema, but you’ll want to try all the Lavazza choices, both espresso and regular roasted beans. There’s a smooth, berry-like flavor in Lavazza which is immensely satisfying. I’m currently enjoyed Perfetto Espresso Roast.

1stincoffee has a best-seller three package sampler, a great way to try out Lavazza coffee.

Make sure to check out the wide variety of gourmet coffee 1st in Coffee offers. You will find everything a coffee-lover drools over here, from beans to coffee makers to needed tools, like coffee bean grinders.

Amazon

Of course Amazon.com carries Lavazza, too. They also have a wide selection and competitive prices. They have a four-pack for you to try out several flavors of Lavazza coffee.

Amazon even offers Lavazza K-cups for the Keurig.

Walmart

Walmart.com also carries Lavazza coffee with prices comparable to Amazon.com.

Local Grocers

Lately I’ve been getting my Lavazza from our local grocer, King Sooper’s. Be sure to check the coffee isle to see if you can get it with your normal grocery shopping.

Your Life Will Never be the Same

Now you know where to buy Lavazza coffee – give it a try and comment below your thoughts and which Lavazza roasts and flavors you like best.

cappuccino

 

 

 

 

Best Sugar Free Starbucks drinks – yes, Starbucks and diet too!

StarbucksMany of us have learned the amazing benefits of going off sugar and are following various eating and diet plans which reduce or eliminate sugar. I have done the Belly Fat Cure, the Keto diet and am now following the Paleo eating plan. Yet I love my Starbucks! Here are the best sugar free Starbucks drinks – yes we can diet and enjoy our Starbucks, too.

Truly Sugar Free Starbucks Coffee

Sometimes I’m more strict than others. If you need absolutely no or the lowest amount of sugar, try these. I say lowest, because Starbucks’ nut milks (and regular cow’s milk) have some sugar in them, some up to 9 grams per serving.

For a Starbucks coffee with no/low sugar, ask for the Ristretto Latte. You can get the ristretto in other forms, too, like espresso. I prefer the latte.

Ristretto is Italian for “restricted.” The barista pulls the shot for a smaller amount than a full espresso. It’s a short, or restricted, shot of espresso using less water. So you get a smaller, more concentrated flavor that is sweeter and richer (as in, not bitter).

Ristretto drinks are light enough that you do not need any sugar to sweeten them. I have a sweet tooth, so I get mine as a latte with half almond milk and half soy milk – these provide enough sweetness.

Another new option they have is the Blond Cappuccino. It also is smooth enough you can enjoy it without any syrups or sweeteners added. You can get the Blond espresso shot in any drink to make it lighter and more naturally sweet.

Sugar Free Starbucks Syrupscoffee syrups

It is unfortunate, but in my city Starbucks no longer carries most of their sugar-free syrups. They have maybe one or two. Usually Vanilla Sugar Free Coffee Syrup and Caramel. Sometimes they’ll have Cinnamon Dolce instead of Caramel. You will have to ask at your local Starbucks which sugar free syrups they carry.

Note that Dutch Bros has sugar free options for all of their coffees.

Using sugar free coffee syrups is considered a cheat on the paleo diet, so consider if this is allowed on your eating plan or not. I allow myself this cheat once in a while because I love my Starbucks (and Dutch Bros).

This summer the Cascara Cold Foam Brew was the featured flavor. I looked it up on my Starbucks app and saw that they use vanilla syrup in making this (and it doesn’t taste very sweet, so maybe they don’t use a lot). So when I order it now, I ask them to use the Sugar Free Vanilla Syrup instead.

Today I got the Salted Sweet Cream Cold Foam Brew. I asked for sugar free or low sugar options, and the barista made up some sugar free foam just for me. I usually don’t mind a tiny sprinkling of cascara sugar or salted caramel on top.

The lesson is – always ask. The baristas at Starbucks are great at helping you reduce sugar in any of their drinks where’s it’s possible.

Low Sugar Starbucks Drinks

Starbucks sugar free

This summer my friend and I stopped at a Starbucks in Boulder. We wanted the Green Tea Frappuccino, and asked them how to lighten the sugar. The barista told us that the frappuccino base itself has sugar in it, so she suggested that we just hold off on any added syrups. We did that and it was plentifully sweet and delicious. A few weeks later we went in again and discovered that Starbucks have now stopped serving syrups in the Green Tea Frappuccinos. It doesn’t need it! But double check when ordering – not all Starbucks are the same.

Try these for something special. I’ve never found a sugar free Toffee Nut at a Starbucks, so I do the other syrups sugar free and allow that one flavor be full sugar:

Butterbeer Latte: ask for a latte (however you like it with whichever milks). Ask for 1-3 pumps of Toffee Nut and 1-3 pumps of sugar free caramel (take it with as few pumps as you can but still enjoy the drink).

Butterbeer Frappuccino: ask for a frappuccino (however you like it with your milks) with 1-3 pumps Toffee Nut syrup, 1-3 pumps sugar free caramel and 1-3 pumps sugar free Cinnamon Dolce. I always allow the whipped cream and salted caramel syrup on top.

Stevia Option

The simplest option for a truly sugar free Starbucks drink is to get any of their drinks you like with no syrups at all, then go inside, get one of their free Stevia packets, and stir it in (or take it home and stir in your own stevia).

Sugar Free and Starbucks too

It’s not hard to continue your no to low sugar eating plan and enjoy a Starbucks once in a while. Just decide how much sugar or cheating you’ll allow yourself, and try out these various options. Comment below if you have one you love the best.

 

 

 

 

Turkish Coffee Beans – actually from Turkey

So you’ve discovered the sublime flavor of Turkish coffee cooked in an ibrik with a hint of cardamom. But where to get actual Turkish coffee beans from Turkey?

Arab MarketTurkish coffee beans ground

Look what I found in a local Arab market? My husband and I noticed a little Arab food market and decided to check it out. I got a can of real Turkish Coffee made in Istanbul – these Turkish coffee beans come finely ground. At the market they also had broken pieces of sugar – both white and yellow saffron sugar. They were like irregularly-shaped sugar cubes. The grocer said in some Arabian countries people like to place one of these on their tongue and keep it there while they sip their unsweetened black coffee or tea. Others put a cube directly into their coffee or tea cup, like the English do.

I came home and immediately made Turkish coffee with my ground beans from Istanbul in my ibrik. It was very good, but very strong – almost too strong for me, and I’m used to strong. Also, the flavor wasn’t as smooth as I prefer. It is super-fine ground with a strong, dark, smokey flavor, similar to the slightly burnt-coffee taste you find in Starbucks shots. Because it is so strong I prefer this one with a little cream.

Amazon and Online Markets

If you want to try this or other Turkish coffee, ground or whole, and don’t have a local Arab market, you can order several kinds right from Amazon or other online shops. Amazon carries this brand I tried, Kurikahveci Mehmet Efendi Turkish Coffee. They also offer several other brands, some with the ground cardamom already in the grounds.

Arabica Coffee Beans

When it comes down to it, any beans grown in Arabic regions would be perfectly authentic for Turkish coffee. I contend, having made many cups from all regions and brands of coffee, that Turkish coffee is delicious made with any coffee beans. Everyone has their own preference and taste, so I encourage experimentation – which are your favorite coffee beans in making Turkish coffee?

Also, grinding coffee beans fresh right before brewing is always best. But you can use pre-ground or grind enough for a week at a time and store in a jar in a cool, dark cupboard.

Making Turkish Coffee

I believe the magic is in the method of preparing Turkish Coffee. Using an ibrik is fun and inexpensive, but if you don’t have one you can follow my instructions in this post: How to Make Turkish Coffee without an Ibrik

Turkish coffee is traditionally made in a shallow pot filled with sand. But we can use the ibrik right on our stove top:

  1. Measure 1 spoonful/coffee scoop of ground coffee per cup of water. Fill your ibrik only to 3/4 full or less, so it has room to froth up.
  2. Add some sugar if you like, I recommend one teaspoon. Add a sprinkle or up to 1 teaspoon of ground cardamom, for traditional Turkish Coffee, or any ground spice you prefer (I love cinnamon, fennel, nutmeg). Use only one spice at a time.
  3. Let this boil on your smallest burner on the stove top. It may take 5 minutes or so to come to a boil, depending on the amount you’re making. Watch it carefully and either lift or move your ibrik over as it froths up and just before it spills over.
  4. As it dies down a little, move it back onto the heat and bring it to a boil a second time. Let it boil for several seconds for the sugar to melt and dissolve into the coffee.
  5. Pour into your mug, grounds and all. Let it sit 30-60 seconds to cool and for the grounds to settle. You may pour it through a fine-mesh strainer if you want almost no grounds in your mug. If you want cream, add it right after pouring, but traditionally this coffee is drunk black with a little sugar.
  6. Enjoy your Turkish Coffee, and do not sip all the way to the bottom if the grounds are there!

Which is your favorite?

Did you use Turkish coffee beans or other beans? Freshly ground or pre-ground? Which spices? Leave your comments and pictures below!

 

 

 

 

How to Make Turkish Coffee without an Ibrik

Turkish Coffee IbriksSo you’ve discovered the inexpressible delights of rich, smooth Turkish coffee, but you have no ibrik in which to make it? (The ibrik is the small copper pot with a long handle specifically for making this awesome coffee.) Here are simple instructions on how to make Turkish coffee without an ibrik – a simple small pot will do.

How Turkish Coffee is Traditionally Made

Traditionally Turkish Coffee is made with the little ibrik resting in a wide shallow pot full of sand. The fire under the pot heats the sand to a hot, even temperature. The barista puts the coffee grounds, water, a little sugar and a pinch of ground cardamom into the ibrik, then nestles the ibrik into the hot sand, moving it around as necessary for even heating.

They bring the coffee to boiling where the sugar magically dissolves and blends with the coffee. With skill, they move the ibrik or lift it just on time so it doesn’t boil over. They may bring it to a boil a couple of times.

Then they pour it into a tiny mug, grounds and all. It sits for a minute as the grounds settle and the coffee cools enough to drink. This is traditionally drank black with just a little bit of sugar. The recipient savors every delicious sip, being careful not to drink it all the way to the bottom where the grounds rest.

How to Make Turkish Coffee without an Ibrik

I highly recommend getting an ibrik. But until then, simply make this with a small pot on the stove. Use the smallest pot you have. Usually enough is made for one espresso cup, but I like to make enough for an American-size 8oz mug of coffee.

Put a spoonful or coffee scoop of grounds into your pot and measure in about a cup of water. Put in a teaspoon of any kind of sugar and from a pinch to a teaspoon (according to your preference) of ground cardamom.

Set your burner to medium and bring it to a boil. Turkish coffee can take up to five minutes. When it’s boiling, lift it a second, then place it back down to bring to a second boil.

Pour into your mug, let the grounds settle and the drink to cool, then enjoy! You may add cream if you want.

Buying an Ibrik

You can buy inexpensive ibriks at Ebay and Amazon.com and I highly recommend this. Turkish coffee is one of the best preparation methods and you will want to keep making it. I own both a tiny ibrik for one espresso cup and the 6-coffee ibrik which fills my 8oz mug perfectly. The ibrik is small and could be used when camping, too.

Making Turkish Coffee with an Ibrik

It’s fun using an ibrik. Follow the same directions (changing the amounts according to the size of your ibrik) to boil this coffee on your stove top. You want at least an inch of space from the top of the ibrik to where your water starts, because it needs room to boil up. Be careful to lift it on time before it boils over and makes a mess. Once the large first bubble pops I let it boil for a few seconds before pouring. Sometimes I move it to the side of the burner instead of lifting. The ibrik has a little pour spout to easily pour into your mug, and this pot can be quickly rinsed and scrubbed out – no scald marks like you’ll get in a regular pot.

The Magic of Turkish Coffee

Once you try Turkish Coffee with an ibrik you won’t want to go back. It’s a bit of heaven and is delicious enough to not need cream or milk. The cardamom helps to reduce the acidity and aids in digestion. You can also experiment with other spices occasionally, like cinnamon or fennel.