Brewing Perfect Vietnamese Coffee

In an unexpected turn of events, it was in Colorado Springs where I first experienced a cup of Vietnamese coffee prepared and served in the traditional style. We went to this fantastic Vietnamese restaurant at the recommendation of our hosts. Large, flavorful bowls of pho and Vietnamese grilled pork chops served with rice noodles (we have a similar recipe for Vietnamese noodle salad).

Although the meal was delicious, it was the Vietnamese hot coffee (cà phê sa nóng) that really did it for me.

How Does Vietnamese Coffee Usually Get Prepared?

The brewing and serving technique for the Vietnamese coffee was what really wowed me, though the coffee itself was rich, flavorful, sweet, and just right for a chilly day. The coffee was served in a small, clear, thick glass with a layer of condensed milk at the bottom and a stainless steel Phin Vietnamese filter on top.

There was already coffee dripping into the glass and blending with the sweetened condensed milk. Philip, who ordered a cà phê sua dá (Vietnamese iced coffee), had the same thing happen to him, except his glass was filled with ice instead of water.

After the coffee had finished brewing, we mixed in some sweetened condensed milk by stirring it into the pot. Yours truly had one that was ready to consume. Philip poured his coffee over the ice in the glass, and it was ready to be enjoyed.  

We had to go to the one Asian supermarket in town to buy some of the Vietnamese-style stainless steel coffee filters (Phin filters) because we are coffee addicts. ) so that we could create our own recipe for Vietnamese coffee

Additionally, we were able to secure some of the restaurant's customary Vietnamese coffee. Longevity is the brand of condensed milk used here. Philip has been using the same brand for a long time. When it comes to ground Vietnamese coffee, the Trung Nguyen brand is highly recommended because of its rich, full flavor and subtle hazelnut undertones.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee

The items required are as follows:

  • A measure of Vietnamese ground coffee equal to three tablespoons (we used Trung Nguyen).
  • We used the Longevity brand, but any type of sweetened condensed milk would work.
  • Your preferred coffee strength, measured in milliliters, plus 6-8 ounces of water near boiling

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

For this Vietnamese coffee recipe, we used ground coffee from the Trung Nguyen brand, but any high-quality French roast will do.

To filter coffee, we use Vietnamese Phin paper filters. are the standard 6-ounce size, but other sizes are available to suit your needs. One other option is to make coffee with a French press or your preferred drip method.

One of our readers recently suggested that we update this post with the information that rinsing the phin filter and the cup with hot, boiling water helps the coffee bloom and drop more evenly. It does its job of cleaning and preheating the filter.

Spread the ground coffee you've measured out (3 tablespoons) evenly in the filter.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

Coffee grounds will fall into the filter's holes and clog them if you shake or compress the filters. The coffee will take forever to drip, and there's a chance the grounds will clog the filter. Carefully set the metal filter over the coffee.

To prepare, place 1 to 3 tablespoons of condensed milk in a coffee mug or other heat-safe glass.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

Gather 6 ounces of water and bring it to a rolling boil. In case you're not a fan of quite such a robust cup of joe, stick to 8 ounces.

Coffee needs to "bloom" for 5 seconds after you pour 2 Tbsp. of hot water into the filter. This is the stage of brewing where the coffee grounds expand due to the release of carbon dioxide gas from the water.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

Then, after the coffee has bloomed, gently press down on the filter. When all of your water is gone, the drip rate will be reduced by this. It also enhances the flavor of the brew.

Following these instructions will help you achieve the best possible brewing results. Gently add the remaining water to the filter. As soon as you lift the mug or glass, coffee will start trickling in.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

The coffee will be ready in about 5 minutes after the drip brewing process is complete.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

Take away the filter and stir in the condensed milk. It's up to you to decide how much condensed milk to use, but here are some guidelines from me:

  • Coffee with regular sweetness: 1 tablespoon sweetened condensed milk
  • In order to make a sugary coffee, add 2 tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk.
  • Infuse your coffee with the flavor of a caramel coffee hard candy by adding 3 tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

Be merry with your cà phê sa nóng (Vietnamese for "hot coffee"). Vietnamese iced coffee (cà phê sua dá) is made by pouring freshly brewed coffee over ice in a tall glass.

How to Make Vietnamese Coffee, by thewoksoflife.com

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  • You can substitute any high-quality French roast coffee for the Trung Nguyen ground coffee that we used to make this Vietnamese coffee.
  • Phin Vietnamese coffee filters come in a variety of sizes; we stock the 6-ounce option. You could also use a drip coffee maker, French press, or other similar device.
  • Spread the ground coffee you've measured out (3 tablespoons) evenly in the filter.
  • Please DO NOT shake or compress the coffee, as this will cause the grounds to fall into the filter and clog it. The coffee will drip slowly, or the filter could become completely clogged with grounds. Gently set the metal filter atop the coffee.
  • Empty the can of condensed milk into a mug or other heat-safe glass.
  • Take 6 ounces of water and bring it to a boil. If you prefer a milder cup of joe, stick to 8 ounces.
  • To "bloom" the coffee, place the filter over the glass and pour 2 tablespoons of hot water in. Let it sit for 5 seconds. The bloom occurs in coffee brewing when water causes the coffee's carbon dioxide (CO2) to be released, causing the grounds to swell.
  • Then, after the coffee has bloomed, gently press down on the filter. This reduces the speed of the drip when all the water is used, which results in better tasting coffee.
  • The best brew time can be attained by following these instructions. Now, gradually add the remaining water to the filter, and watch as the coffee slowly trickles into your chosen vessel.
  • Let the coffee steep for about 5 minutes while you wait for the drip brewing method to finish.
  • Take out the filter and whisk in the condensed milk.
Calories: 129 kcal (6%) Carbohydrates: 22 g (7%) Protein: 3 g (6%) Fat: 3 g (5%) Trans Fats: 2 g (10%) Cholesterol: 14 mg (5%) Sodium: 60 mg (3%) Potassium: 148 mg (4%) Sugar: 22 g (24%) Vitamin A: 105 IU (2%) Vitamin C: 1.1 mg (1%) Calcium: 114 mg (11%)
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