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The Most Uniquely Satisfying Coffee I’ve Ever Had

Oh, get ready to fall in love with Vietnamese coffee, a heavenly brew that’s the epitome of indulgence and simplicity. Made using a traditional Phin coffee maker—a cute, little metal drip filter that sits right on top of your cup—this coffee is a slow-drip masterpiece that lets you savor every moment. The magic starts with a thick layer of sweetened condensed milk at the bottom of your glass, just waiting to mingle with the intensely rich coffee dripping down. By the end of this guide, you’ll have the insider scoop on how to craft the perfect cup of Vietnamese coffee, every single time. Drink it hot, or stir in some ice for a soothing treat. Trust me, your mornings are about to get a whole lot more exciting!

My Personal Experience with the Vietnamese Coffee

Ah, my first encounter with Vietnamese coffee was nothing short of magical, and it happened in the vibrant culinary melting pot of San Francisco, California. Picture this: me and my crew, hungry and adventurous, meandering through the city’s bustling streets, each corner more enticing than the next. Our foodie senses led us to this cozy Vietnamese gem of a restaurant, tucked away like a well-kept secret. The waiter, a jovial soul from Vietnam, was not just a food server but a storyteller, passionately weaving tales of culture and culinary delights. Our mutual love for that perfect cup of coffee soon became the centerpiece of our conversation. Once he found out I was an espresso aficionado, he couldn’t resist offering me something off-menu—a personal favorite, Vietnamese coffee crafted just the way he adored it.

A Coffee Surprise Came Around The Corner

Moments later, he reappeared holding a chilled glass, its contents a mesmerizing dance of dark coffee and swirls of sweetened condensed milk still mingling. With a twinkle in his eye, he watched as I took my first sip. Time stood still. My taste buds erupted in a carnival of flavors—intensely robust yet sweet, a coffee unlike any other I’d ever tasted. It was love at first sip, the ideal finale to any meal. His eyes lit up with pure joy as he saw my reaction, a price tag nowhere in sight; instead, he extended an open invitation for future coffee rendezvous.

Coffee Connects Us All

But let me tell you, this episode did way more than just expand my coffee horizons. It opened up a new chapter in how I perceive the role of coffee in our lives—as a delicious connector, a cultural ambassador, a memory maker. To this day, just one sip of Vietnamese coffee whisks me back to that unforgettable San Francisco moment. Even now, as I recount it, the flavors dance on my tongue and the aroma fills the air as if that glass of Vietnamese coffee is right here in front of me.

What Does Vietnamese Coffee Taste Like?

Vietnamese coffee grounds are strong, bold, and slightly bitter. This robust flavor is beautifully offset by the sweet, creamy condensed milk. The resulting beverage is a perfect balance, both invigorating and comforting. The sweetness of the condensed milk tempers the coffee’s intensity, creating a blend that is both rich and refreshing.

When served hot, the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe is a comforting drink, perfect for quiet, contemplative moments. On the other hand, as an iced beverage, it’s a refreshing respite from the heat, with the ice adding another layer of complexity to the drink’s texture and temperature. If you like Vietnamese coffee, then give this Cafe Au Lait recipe a try.

Ingredients and Amounts

Creating the perfect Vietnamese Coffee Recipe starts with gathering the right ingredients. Here’s what you need:

  • 2 tablespoons of Vietnamese coffee: Trung Nguyen is a popular brand that captures the authentic taste.
  • 2-3 teaspoons of sweetened condensed milk: The quantity can be adjusted based on your preference for sweetness.
  • 4 oz boiling water
  • Ice (if you’re making iced coffee)

Essential Tools To Make a Perfect Vietnamese Coffee

  • ORIGINAL PHIN FILTERS: A perfect upgrade to your coffee routine, the phin filter is a traditional Vietnamese Brewing Tool that is easy to use to make a delicious authentic cup of Vietnamese coffee.
  • PERFECT FOR YOUR DAILY GRIND: Great for traveling, our phin filters are convenient and able to prepare 1-2 servings of highly caffeinated brew in 5 minutes.

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  • Fast-heating electric glass carafe kettle for quickly and conveniently boiling water
  • Make herbal tea, hot chocolate, instant soups, and more without the hassle of heating water on the stovetop
  • Glass carafe with non-heating handle easily detaches from base for cordless serving
  • Safety features include auto-shutoff, blue operational lights, and boil dry protection
  • Compact, modern design fits easily on a counter, shelf, or in a cabinet; includes a cord-wrap recess
  • 1.0 liter capacity with a 1500 watt heating element

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  • EASY TO USE: This kettle will boil water in no time and features a flip-up whistling spout that easily opens when it’s time to pour.
  • SIMPLE TO STORE: The folding handle makes it easy to store this kettle in a cabinet, drawer or pantry.
  • EASY TO CLEAN: The wide mouth lid of the kettle makes cleaning a simple task, leaving enough room to easily empty and wipe dry the kettle between uses.

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The Art of Brewing: Step-by-Step Instructions

Creating a traditional Vietnamese Coffee Recipe is an art. It involves patience, precision, and the right techniques. But with this guide, you will be able to master the recipe in no time. Let’s dive into the process:

Step 1: Add Condensed Milk

Pour the sweetened condensed milk into the bottom of the glass or cup. The quantity can be adjusted based on your preference, but two teaspoons per serving is a great place to start.

Step 2: Prepare the Coffee Filter

Place the Phin (Vietnamese coffee filter) over your glass or cup. Add the Vietnamese coffee to the filter, ensuring it’s evenly spread.

Step 3: Brew the Coffee

Pour just enough boiling water into the filter to cover the coffee grounds by about 1/2 an inch. After about 30 seconds, the coffee grounds would have bloomed (expanded in size). Now fill the remainder of the filter with boiling water. If you are using a standard-size Phin, this entire process will use about 4 oz of boiling water. Following this two-step process of adding the boiling water is essential for extracting the full flavor from the coffee.

Step 4: Wait and Watch

Let the coffee slowly drip into the glass. This process usually takes about 5 minutes. The slow drip is a key aspect of Vietnamese coffee, allowing for a strong brew. The overall strength of the coffee is very similar to espresso due to the concentrated flavor.

Step 5: Stir and Serve

Once the coffee has fully dripped, remove the filter. If you’re making iced coffee, add ice, then stir well to combine the coffee and condensed milk. If serving hot, stir and enjoy!

Learn More: Origin of the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe

Coffee was introduced to Vietnam in the 19th century by French colonists and quickly became a staple. However, due to the scarcity of fresh milk, the French started using sweetened condensed milk as a substitute. This ingenuity gave birth to the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe, a delightful blend that we have grown to love.

The growth of coffee production in Vietnam has closely followed the country’s history. From small-scale farming during the French colonial period to the significant growth during the 1990s, coffee production has become a vital part of Vietnam’s economy. Today, Vietnam is the second-largest producer of coffee in the world, with the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe being an integral part of the country’s coffee culture.

Troubleshooting Your Vietnamese Coffee Recipe

Brewing Vietnamese coffee may present some challenges, especially if you’re new to this unique method. Here are some common issues and solutions:

  • Coffee Drips Too Fast or Too Slow: The speed at which your coffee drips is critical to the strength of your brew. If it’s too fast or too slow, adjust the screw on your Phin coffee filter. This should regulate the drip speed, leading to a better brew.
  • Coffee Tastes Weak: Vietnamese coffee is renowned for its robust flavor. If your coffee tastes weak, ensure you’re using enough coffee grounds. Experiment with quantities until you find your perfect strength.
  • Coffee Isn’t Sweet Enough: The sweetness level of your Vietnamese coffee is subjective. If you find your brew not sweet enough, feel free to add more condensed milk. Remember, the joy of making your own coffee is tailoring it to your taste!

Common Variations of the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe

While the traditional Vietnamese Coffee Recipe is delightful in its own right, there are several exciting variations that you can explore:

  • Cà Phê Trứng (Egg Coffee): This Hanoi specialty includes a frothy, sweet, and creamy egg yolk mixture on top of the black coffee. It’s like drinking a liquid tiramisu!
  • Cà Phê Cốt Dừa (Coconut Coffee): This variant mixes creamy coconut milk with the coffee, creating a tropical twist to the original. It’s like a beach vacation in a cup!
  • Cà Phê Sữa Chua (Yogurt Coffee): In this refreshing variation, a dollop of sweetened yogurt is added to the coffee. The combination of the tangy yogurt with the strong coffee is surprisingly delightful. It’s a dessert and a coffee rolled into one!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use any coffee for the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe?

While Vietnamese coffee is typically robust and dark, which contrasts well with the sweetened condensed milk, you can use any coffee you prefer. Just note that the flavor may vary depending on the coffee beans used.

What if I don’t have a Vietnamese coffee filter?

If a Vietnamese coffee filter isn’t readily available, you can use alternatives such as a French press or an espresso maker. The process will be slightly different, but you should still be able to achieve a strong brew.

Can I make it vegan?

Absolutely! For a vegan-friendly Vietnamese Coffee Recipe, substitute the sweetened condensed milk with condensed coconut milk or any other plant-based condensed milk of your choice. This will provide the same creamy texture and sweetness without any dairy products.

Conclusion: Vietnamese Coffee is a True Delight

In conclusion, the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe is more than just a beverage; it’s an experience that invites you to immerse yourself in the rich history and culture of Vietnam. The delightful balance of strong, robust coffee and sweet, creamy condensed milk offers a unique taste profile that is both invigorating and comforting. Whether you’re a seasoned coffee connoisseur or a casual enthusiast, creating your own Vietnamese coffee is an adventure that’s well worth undertaking.

This guide has taken you through the ingredients and equipment needed, provided a detailed step-by-step process, shared my personal experiences, explored common variations, and addressed frequently asked questions. With this knowledge, you’re well-equipped to embark on your own Vietnamese coffee brewing journey. Remember, the beauty of making your own coffee lies in the ability to tailor it to your tastes, so don’t be afraid to experiment and make this recipe your own.

So, as they say in Vietnam, “Hãy uống cà phê!” – Let’s drink coffee! Enjoy your journey through the exquisite world of Vietnamese coffee, one cup at a time.

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Picture of a Vietnamese Phin coffee filter on top of a glass coffee cup containing sweetened condensed milk on the bottom and freshly brewed coffee on top

Vietnamese Coffee

Vietnamese coffee is like diving into a bold, robust coffee flavor that's so rich, it's almost chocolatey. This isn't your run-of-the-mill brew; we're talking a depth of flavor that's strong enough to kickstart your heart but nuanced enough to keep you pondering its complexities. And just when you think you've got it figured out, in swirls the sweet, creamy condensed milk, turning the whole experience into a velvety, dessert-like treat. The result? A harmonious balance of strong and sweet, bitter and creamy.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 1 minute
Brew Time 5 minutes
Total Time 6 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine Vietnamese
Servings 1
Calories 32 kcal

Equipment

  • A Phin Vietnamese Coffee Filter This tool achieves the slow drip characteristic of Vietnamese coffee
  • A tea kettle Used for boiling water
  • A glass or cup to serve

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tbsp Vietnamese coffee grounds Trung Nguyen is a popular brand that captures the authentic taste.
  • 2 tsp Sweetened condensed milk The quantity can be adjusted based on your preference for sweetness.
  • 4 oz Boiling water
  • Ice (optional)

Instructions
 

  • Pour the sweetened condensed milk into the bottom of the glass or cup. The quantity can be adjusted based on your preference, but two teaspoons per serving is a great place to start.
  • Place the Phin (Vietnamese coffee filter) over your glass or cup. Add the Vietnamese coffee to the filter, ensuring it's evenly spread.
  • Pour just enough boiling water into the filter to cover the coffee grounds by about 1/2 an inch. After 30 seconds, the coffee grounds would have bloomed (expanded in size). Now fill the remainder of the filter with boiling water. If you are using a standard-size Phin, this entire process will use about 4 oz of boiling water. Following this two-step process of adding the boiling water is essential for extracting the full flavor from the coffee.
  • Let the coffee slowly drip into the glass. This process usually takes about 5 minutes. The slow drip is a key aspect of Vietnamese coffee, allowing for a strong brew.
  • Once the coffee has fully dripped, remove the filter. If you’re making iced coffee, add ice, then stir well to combine the coffee and condensed milk. If serving hot, stir and enjoy!

Notes

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use any coffee for the Vietnamese Coffee Recipe?

While Vietnamese coffee is typically robust and dark, which contrasts well with the sweetened condensed milk, you can use any coffee you prefer. Just note that the flavor may vary depending on the coffee beans used.

What if I don’t have a Vietnamese coffee filter?

If a Vietnamese coffee filter isn’t readily available, you can use alternatives such as a French press or an espresso maker. The process will be slightly different, but you should still be able to achieve a strong brew.

Can I make it vegan?

Absolutely! For a vegan-friendly Vietnamese Coffee Recipe, substitute the sweetened condensed milk with condensed coconut milk or any other plant-based condensed milk of your choice. This will provide the same creamy texture and sweetness without any dairy products.

Troubleshooting Your Vietnamese Coffee Recipe

Brewing Vietnamese coffee may present some challenges, especially if you’re new to this unique method. Here are some common issues and solutions:

Coffee Drips Too Fast or Too Slow:

The speed at which your coffee drips is critical to the strength of your brew. If it’s too fast or too slow, adjust the screw on your Phin coffee filter. This should regulate the drip speed, leading to a better brew.

Coffee Tastes Weak:

Vietnamese coffee is renowned for its robust flavor. If your coffee tastes weak, ensure you’re using enough coffee grounds. Experiment with quantities until you find your perfect strength.

Coffee Isn’t Sweet Enough:

The sweetness level of your Vietnamese coffee is subjective. If you find your brew not sweet enough, feel free to add more condensed milk. Remember, the joy of making your own coffee is tailoring it to your taste!

Nutrition

Serving: 180gCalories: 32kcalCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 13mgPotassium: 37mgSugar: 5gVitamin A: 26IUVitamin C: 0.3mgCalcium: 28mg
Keyword Coffee
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