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Saturday, March 27, 2010

If Martha Made Vietnamese- Cà phê sữa đá or Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Is it warming up enough for those of you in the arctic turndra to think about an iced coffee drink?  It's getting warm here.  It's suppose to hit the mid 80s next week, and we drink these year 'round anyway.  

Papa is a coffee drinker.  I am not.  I have no personal agenda against coffee or caffeine in general, I just never acquired an addiction to the stuff, unlike my not-so-sweet, pre-coffee, growly Papa bear in the morning.  In fact, Papa bear considers himself a coffee conesour, if only, I think to make up for my lack of enthusiasm about the stuff.  

So I introduce cà phê sữa đá, or translated it means "iced coffee with milk" for all the coffee lovers!  Here's to amping you up!

This drink is pretty much like a dessert.  It is rich and sweet and kinda like melted coffee ice cream.  But I'll give you fair warning.  Do NOT drink this before bed unless supplementing with Ambien.  It's amped up.

Remember that French-Vietnamese fusion?  This coffee is a great example!  Rich French coffee, espresso really, with sweetened condensed milk (no substitutes please) and picture a steamy hot SaiGon day that's 95 degrees with 95% humidity and needing a cool refreshment.  So pour it all over ice out of necessity and voila.. cà phê sữa đá!
And because I am not a coffee drinker, let's start with my obsession for pretty cans.  I've told y'all before that sometimes in the Asian market I just get a tad overwhelmed and don't know what to buy.  So as a default, I just go with the prettiest can.  It's lame.  But it works for me.  I'm ok with being lame on occasion, especially if it means I end up with pretty cans.  
So pour a couple tablespoons of this yummy creamy suculant nectar in the bottom of your glass.  No substitutes.  Yes, it's gonna make your thighs jiggly.  But it has to be this way.  
Let's talk coffee too.  It has to be a coarse grain or it will fall through the holes in the filter.  The French and thus the Veitnamese prefer coffee with chicory in it.  It draws out the flavors of the coffee, or so Papa explained to me.  This is the brand I found at the Asian market.  If you can't find one with chicory, it's ok.  Just use French or Espresso roast.  Something dark and rich.  

Then we move to the French (or Vietnamese) coffee press.  It's cheap ($2-5), but you're not gonna find it at your local grocery.  Pretty easy to find online, like here.  I'm gonna use it to make our coffee, cause Papa is a coffee conesour and has no less that 396 coffee type makers.  But let's say your lazy like me.  Just whip up a couple shots of espresso, or even some really dark coffee.  It'll substitute just fine.

The press comes apart into 3 pieces.  
Take off the little lid, and the coffee goes in, a couple tablespoons, and then the press screws in on top to press it all down tight.  If you like your coffee dark, like the sharpie I found all over my dining room walls this morning, screw it down tight.  But if you like your coffee lighter, like the full 1" of grey hair that's now showing at my hair line, then screw it down more loosly.  
Now set it on top of your glass and fill it up with hot water.  Put the lid back on.  It's going to SLOWLY drip into your glass.
Here's the part I'm NO good at!  I warned you.  It is slowly going to drip.  

Wait some more...

Keep waiting...  
Throw in a load of laundry and keep waiting.

Scrub off the aforementioned marker on the wall while waiting.
Wish that "Rubenesque" women would come back in fashion to go with my jiggle thighs, but keep waiting till all the water runs through the filter.

This is NOT a fast process.  Depending on how tightly the press is screwed on, it could take up 15-20 minutes. 
When all the water has dripped through, remove the filter by using those little black handles on the filter 'cause it'll be hot, and place it on the overturned lid to catch any drips.  See, isn't this little device ingenious!

Stir to dissolve the condensed milk.  
And pour over a glass of ice.  
Mmmmmmmmmm   Thigh-jiggly goodness!
PS-Even though I'm not an avid coffe drinker, I still really enjoy this drink.  Especially on a hot day.  But because this rich drink is a bit too rich for me, I do cut it with some milk.  

(Sharon-I think this counts as vegetarian, right?)

1 comment:

  1. So funny to see that at the end. Here's my problem. We don't do DAIRY! And you very sternly said no substitutions. Now what? How can I live without this drink after you made it look so good? There has GOT to be a way to make it with soy or rice. I know you are thinking it just wouldn't be the same, but get in the right mind frame here. Work with me!!! : )


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