Long before Brooklyn hipsters and Portland coffee shops were using the pour-over coffee technique (no judging here: I myself am a huge fan of the Chemex carafes- such a classic look!), the Vietnamese perfected the method with their phin filters.
As much as I love cafe sua da, or traditional Vietnamese iced coffee, I’m often too rushed to use my phin filter. I usually just brew up a big pot of Trung Nguyen coffee in my regular ol’ drip coffee maker and then put the leftovers in the fridge for the rest of the week.
Cafe sua da strict constructionists… you might want to stop reading now if you’ve made it this far. For everybody else who don’t mind my having thrown tradition to the curb, here’s a frozen treat with the flavors of my favorite coffee beverage. Unsweetened Vietnamese coffee is frozen into granita and then drizzled with sweetened condensed milk.
Although I generally like fine-textured, fluffy granita, I actually prefer some coarse granules here since I love the flavor contrast of the small chunks of bold, unsweetened coffee with the creamy condensed milk. Pretty much heaven for coffee addicts with a sweet tooth like myself.
Vietnamese Iced Coffee Granita
Prepare coffee using a regular drip coffee maker (or your preferred coffee making technique). Use approximately 1-1/2 Tablespoons of ground coffee per 6 ounces of water. Once brewing is complete, set aside and let cool to room temperature.
Pour the coffee into a wide, shallow freezer-safe container. Freeze for about 30 minutes. Remove from freezer and scrape mixture with a fork to break up the ice crystals. Return to freezer and freeze an additional 8-10 hours, removing occasionally to scrape with a fork.*
To serve, spoon mixture into chilled bowls and drizzle with sweetened condensed milk.
Note: If you have a Vita-mix you can make coffee ice cubes and then process the ice cubes, using the tamper, until processed fine.
Want to know how to make authentic Vietnamese Iced Coffee? Check out these recipes:
* The Steamy Kitchen’s Cafe Sua Da
* Vietnamese Iced Coffee at Leite’s Culinaria
* Kiss My Spatula’s Vietnamese Iced Coffee