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July 27, 2016

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“As long as there was coffee in the world, how bad could things be?” ― Cassandra Clare, City of Ashes

At MeetnGreetMe Personal Travel Concierge we love to explore food and drinks recipes around the world. Previously we looked together at the secrets of the real Spanish sangria and explored best summer drinks and cocktails recipes. We hope you found them useful and they made your evening truly enjoyable and refreshing  😉  

Today we are pleased to present to you the ultimate coffee guide. In this issue of the guide we will closely look at the ways to make and enjoy Vietnamese iced coffee, Arabic coffee with cardamom, Italian espresso, Australian flat white and genuine Ethiopian coffee. 

So let’s kick it off and embark on a fantastic journey with caffeine, roasted beans and mouth-watering aroma.

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Vietnam has become one of the biggest exporters of coffee after Brazil since coffee was first introduced there in 1857 by the French. The dairy industry wasn’t developed well in the 19th centuries, therefore Vietnamese started to use condensed milk together with dark roasted coffee. Ca phe sua da or cà phê sữa đá or Vietnamese iced coffee is quite easy to make. You can also use medium roasted coffee for this drink, however, avoid using light roasted one. 

You will need a silver or stainless steel filter to brew traditional Vietnamese iced coffee. They are generally not difficult to find both in online and offline shops.

Ingredients:

  • dark roasted coffee
  • water
  • sweetened condensed milk
  • ice

Procedure: 

  1. Cover the bottom of the glass with 1 cm or 1/3 inch condensed milk

  2. Take the top filter screen off

  3. Add one rounded tablespoon of ground coffee

  4. Screw the top filter tight

  5. Place the brewer on the glass with milk

  6. Fill the brewer with hot water. You can cool it down for a few seconds before pouring. As a rule, it takes about five minutes for the water to pass the filter. If it goes too fast, we advise you screw the top filter tighter. On the opposite, if it takes too little time, again adjust the top filter accordingly.

  7. The coffee should form a layer on top of the condensed milk

  8. Mix the liquids together

  9. Palate the coffee when you finish making it to find out whether you need to add some sugar. Some people prefer to opt out of sugar because the sweetened condensed milk makes the coffee tasty enough. 

  10.  Add some ice, stir the drink and enjoy.

Arabic Coffee with Cardamom

Arabic Coffee with Cardamom

Arabic coffee with cardamom is believed to be one of the tastiest and healthiest recipes. Cardamom makes the coffee refreshing and gives you energy for the upcoming day. When in coffee this spice helps to boost brain activity, relieve stress and neutralize the bad effects of caffeine. 

It is believed that historically coffee originated in the Middle East. It has gained deep cultural meaning as serving coffee has become a ceremonial act of hospitality and generosity.  In fact, it is also considered rude to decline hosts’ offer to drink a cup of coffee together. 

Ingredients:

  • ground medium roasted Arabic coffee beans
  • water
  • ground cardamom 

Procedure: 

    1. Use a spoon to crush the cardamom

    2. Grind the cardamom into a powder in a coffee grinder

    3. Fill the dallah or a saucepan with hot water and heat water on stove top

    4. Remove the dallah from heat, let it cool down a little bit

    5. Turn the heat down to low

    6. Add rounded tablespoons. One tablespoon per serving

    7. Brew the coffee at low heat for 10 minutes. Don’t let it burn. If need be, remove it from the stove occasionally to control the boiling

    8. Turn off the heat and let the dallah settle for a minute

    9. As soon as the foam goes down, add cardamom 

    10. Bring it back on the stove and slowly bring it to a boil

    11. Finally remove the dallah from the stove and let it settle for 5 minutes. 

    12. Use small cups on a serving plate to present the coffee in the traditional way. 

If you feel like sweetening the coffee, you can either add some sugar or, which is more traditional and authentic, enjoy it with dates.

Italian Espresso

Italian Espresso

What makes a true Italian really Italian? Of course, it is a cup of aromatic invigorating espresso. Here not only the coffee itself is important, but the whole ‘ritual’ of savouring it. Italians believe that the right way of drinking espresso means ordering it at a bar, drinking quickly and speaking with the barista for a while just to catch up on the recent news. And remember that espresso should always be made to order and without crema on top. 

Ingredients:

  • water
  • 20 grams ground coffee

Procedure: 

  1. But the coffee beans into small pieces before brewing

  2. Press the ground coffee with a tamper. Make sure it is 30-pound press applied evenly

  3. Set the temperature in the espresso machine at 195-205 F (90-96 C) with a PID controller. 

  4. Shoot about 2 ounces (30 ml) of espresso. When you are still learning how to make espresso, it is advised you weigh your output so make sure it is roughly 30 grams. 

It should take no more than 30 seconds for the machine to do its job. So when the shot is ready…remember? Drink it up quickly! And enjoy the influx of energy 😉  

Oh, and one more important thing. If you don’t want Italians to throw snobbish glances at you, make sure you drink cappuccino in the morning only, preferrably before 11 am. They believe that coffee with milk should be drunk in the first half of the day, however, espresso can be enjoyed during the whole day. 

Australian Flat White 

Australian Flat White

Aussies are considered in the world and by themselves too to be genuine coffee snobs. They know which coffee shops in the area serve the best and the correct cappuccino, long black, flat white or espresso. In fact, they believe this to be the reason why Starbucks failed in Australia.

Not only Australians but New Zealanders too have a strong love to this beverage. In fact, Hollywood actor Hugh Jackman claims it to be one of his most favourite types of coffee. Therefore, it has never been so important to learn how to make the right Australian flat white. In fact, one of the earliest references to Australian flat white go back to the 1980-s to the time when a bar in Sydney included this delicious recipe in its menu. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 shot espresso

Procedure: 

  1. Heat milk in a saucepan at medium heat until it starts to simmer

  2. Remove from heat

  3. Whisk it until is it is frothy. The milk should have a glossy consistency.

  4. Pour into a wide coffee cup

  5. Pour espresso over the milk

Unlike latte or cappuccino, flat white is smaller in volume and has a higher proportion of coffee to milk. 

Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony

Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony

Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee so no other place can offer such genuine experience to coffee addicts and obsessives. Coffee takes a prime place in the country’s life with over 12 mln people involved in picking coffee beans. The story has it was coffee was first discovered here in 800 A.D. Drinking Ethiopian coffee comprises a whole ceremony designed to bring value to an open conversation over local politics and gossips as well as develop friendly human relations.

The coffee ceremony can take a few hours including preparing and drinking the beverage. It is an integral part of the culture so should be taken with responsibility and respect. Being invited to a coffee ceremony is considered to be an act of kindness and hospitality so shall not be turned down. 

According to the ritual coffee should be drunk in 3 cups starting with the strongest brew to the weakest one. The third round is believed to bestow a blessing. Coffee is usually taken with a lot of sugar and never with milk and it is accompanied with some local snack, for example, pop corn or peanuts.

Ingredients:

  • roast coffee beans
  • water
  • sugar (plenty of it)

Procedure: 

  1. Grind coffee beans by hand in a special mukecha bowl with a zenezena stick

  2. Place the ground coffee in a jebena clay pitcher

  3. Place it on fire and bring to a boil

  4. Pour the brewed coffee into a decanter and let it cool down a bit

  5. Pour this liquid back into a jebena and bring to a boil again

  6. Repeat this one more time

  7. Put a filter on top of the jebena to separate the grounds when serving the drink

  8. Pour the hot coffee into small cups

We hope that you found this post useful and it will help you keep awake, fill your life with meaning (and it lies in a good cup of coffee, of course), tune you up and give energy for the rest of the day. Or the night 😀

Do you know some other great coffee experiences worldwide? Share with us! In any case, stay tuned for another MeetnGreetMe issue of the Ultimate International Coffee Guide! Cheers 😉

Come and become part of our MeetnGreetMe Community!

Thanks to Olga Tashlikovich for the amazing pictures!

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