And so begins my posts on all things Vietnamese. Although I have plenty more up the sleeve about my holiday in Vietnam during this summer, I’m going start with the very basics. Ca Phe, or as we British like to call it: COFFEE. I’m not thinking Starbucks dishwater coffee though, but very original Vietnamese coffee beans.
And so the tour guide told us a story about their coffee beans (a ploy to sell coffee? Maybe! But I don’t care!). Apparently, a squirrel has the skill to choose the best coffee bean, and at it’s ripest (and best) stage, which is usually during the night. But what do humans do? We’re incapable of doing such things, and instead, pick the droppings from these aforementioned animals, and get our hands on these coffee beans this way. What a lovely thought, hey?
What makes Vietnamese coffee different from le Starbucks though? Apart from not being a tres annoying chain around the country, coffee from Vietnam is made with sweet condensed milk. It is this sweetness that makes the coffee much easier to drink, especially for those like me who don’t do coffee.
So from le city de Ho Chi Minh, I brought back a fair sized pack of coffee granules and coffee filter. As you may know from having dinners at Mango Tree, Pho and Cay Tre, vietnamese coffee is a patient affair. You’d be waiting five minutes, maybe more, for a thoroughly filtered through cup of coffee, and then to pour this into a glass full of ice for your ICED COFFEE. Usually worth the wait though, in my POV. And now I decided to give it a go myself!
Our beloved tour guide taught me to spoon 3 teaspoons of coffee into the filter, to fifteen teaspoons of coffee (so 1/4 of the filter full). Now this is where my filter died, and just let all the water pass through without any resistance. It’s not meant to be like that! Google saved the day with a step-by-step guide courtesy of INeedCoffee and I’ve since learnt, you really need that top filter to compress the coffee down, so it’s a very slow process where the water literally DRIPS through. Ideally, it should take minutes, not 20 seconds! So end of story, my vietnamese coffee failed… badly.
But I do not despair, I will notify when I make the perfect cup of coffee. Until then.