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How to Make Turkish Coffee

It is said that when the Turks fought a battle in Austria in 1633, they retreated in such a hurry that they left behind sacks of coffee. The Austrians realized the value of the booty and soon started serving coffee accompanied by croissants in memory of the Turks: bread shaped like the half-moon.

A Turkish proverb says, "Bir fincan kahvenin 40 yil hatiri vardir" (One cup of coffee remains in memories for 40 years). Turkish coffee is central to Turkish living. A walk through any grocery store, the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, and even small "convenience stores" carry Turkish coffee and coffee pots for making coffee.

There are many coffee houses throughout Turkey. However, make sure you ask for Turkish coffee, otherwise you will get served instant! If possible, pick up a proper bag of Turkish coffee to take home with you.

How to Make Turkish Coffee:

1. Take your small pot, in Turkey it's called an "Ibrik". Ours is copper, which is the commonly used coffee pot in Turkey and are inexpensive to buy in Turkey. Use a small saucepan of you don't have an Ibrik.

2. The coffee is extremely fine, almost to a powder. Choose a light roast, not a dark roast, because it will be extremely strong due to how much use.

3. Take your serving cup, which is a double demitasse cup, fill it with cold water, for the number of cups you want. Pour that into your Ibrik or small pot.

4. Put the Ibrik filled with desired cold water on the stove on high flame.

5. Pour one heaping teaspoon of the pulverized coffee for each serving of coffee desired.

6. Also put in the desired amount of sugar.

7. Traditional Turkish coffee has four variances of sugar: No sugar; A little sugar (a half teaspoon of sugar); A medium sugar (level heaping of sugar); or a lot of sugar (rounded teaspoon of sugar).

8. Stir the coffee and sugar until they sink to the bottom and become somewhat blended together with water. Stop stirring as soon as it sinks to the bottom.

9. Reduce heat to medium high heat. You do not want it to come to a boil too quickly, because it needs to bring out the flavor. If it boils too quickly, it won't bring out the flavor.

10. Just as the coffee barely comes to a boil (small bubbles, not a rolling boil), remove it from the heat to stop the boil.

11. Then put it back on the heat until it boils a second time.

12. Take it off, and put it on the third time 'till it boils.

13. Then it is poured into the cups. Raise the pot as you pour. Raising the pot will maximize the amount of foam on each of the cups. You have to alternate as you pour into the cups, because you want the thickest possible layer of coffee foam to be equal int he cups. The Foam is important! The foam is the most important part, and is considered the pride of the coffee maker.

It takes practice to get a good layer of foam.

14. Serve and enjoy! Drink slowly, but do not drink to the bottom. There should be a layer of coffee "sludge" at the bottom.

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