Qahwi

Qahwi

Coffee

By
From
The Complete Middle Eastern Cookbook
Photographer
Alan Benson

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
see method for ingredients

Method

  1. Coffee-making in this part of the world is taken as seriously as it is in Turkey and the Gulf States. Every household has its rakwi (long-handled coffee pot) and tahrini (brass coffee grinder).
  2. To impress your Arabic host or your guests, use the right coffee term — murrah for sugarless coffee, mazboutah for medium-sweet and hilweh for very sweet.
  3. Coffee is always served in tiny, bowl-shaped, handle-less cups, sometimes placed in decorative brass holders. The rakwi is usually made of brass and attractively worked; very old pieces have a lid to keep the coffee hot. The rakwi is often taken to the coffee drinkers with the cups. Speed in transferring the coffee from the stove to the serving area is necessary as the grounds must not be given time to settle in the pot. When drinking coffee, however, you must allow a little time before drinking it to allow the grounds to settle.
  4. To each Arabic coffee cup measure of water, add a level teaspoon of sugar for medium-sweet, and a heaped teaspoon for very sweet. Stir the sugar in the water over the heat until dissolved and boiling. Add 1 heaped teaspoon of pulverised coffee (usually a dark roasted coffee) for each cup of water, stir well and cook until the foam rises to the top of the pot. The pot is removed from the heat and the base rapped on a flat surface to reduce foaming. Heat twice more, with raps in between. Pour immediately into the cups.
  5. To flavour the coffee, either grind cardamom pods with the coffee beans (three or four with each 250 g beans), or add one pod to the pot for each four cups of coffee being brewed, though this is the particular flavouring of the Arab Gulf countries. Traditionally a little silver urn of rosewater or orange flower water would accompany the coffee so that a few drops may be added to individual taste.
Tags:
The Complete Middle Eastern Cookbook
Tess
Mallos
Middle Eastern
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