Turkish coffee, Türk Kahvesi in Turkish, is actually a method of preparing coffee, not a certain type of beans. Beans are roasted and ground to a fine powder; then the ground coffee, cold water and sugar are added to a coffee pot and brewed slowly on a stove to produce the desired foam. Typically never served or prepared with milk. It’s served in small cups and accompanied with a glass of water.
Before you order, you need to decide how sweet you’d like your coffee to be. The options: no sugar, little sugar, semi-sweet or sweet. The sugar is mixed with the coffee before it’s boiled and simmered together, due to the layer of coffee grounds at the bottom, you can’t stir the coffee once it’s poured.
At first glance, you might think it’s rather small, but a little cup goes a long way. Typically drank at special occasions with close friends or even served after enjoying a large meal. It accompanies good conversation and is slowly enjoyed. The tradition itself is a symbol of hospitality, friendship, refinement and entertainment. It also plays an important role on social occasions like engagement ceremonies and holidays.
Do not immediately drink when served or you’ll burn your lips. At first sip, it might appear bitter but as you continue to sip you can start to taste the flavors. Unfortunately almost 1/3 of the small cup is grounds, so you need to stop drinking before or when you start to taste them.
The grounds left in the empty cup are often used for fortune telling. The cup is inverted onto the saucer, then given time to cool to allow the grounds to reveal a person’s fortune.
TURKISH ENGAGEMENT TRADITION
Once two people decide to marry, they’re immediate families come together to meet each other. One of the evening’s traditions involves the bride making Turkish coffee. The bride-to-be will prepare coffee for everyone, however for the groom, his is different. The groom’s will be prepared with salt instead of sugar. When the groom takes a sip it will determine his character and reveals how he will deal with difficulties in their life to come.
MARK TWAIN ON TURKISH COFFEE
In Mark Twain’s ‘The Innocents Abroad’ published in 1869, he mentions his experience of drinking turkish coffee while visiting Constantinople.
Then he brought the world-renowned Turkish coffee that poets have sung so rapturously for many generations, and I seized upon it as the last hope that was left of my old dreams of Eastern luxury. It was another fraud. Of all the unchristian beverages that ever passed my lips, Turkish coffee is the worst. The cup is small, it is smeared with grounds; the coffee is black, thick, unsavory of smell, and execrable in taste. The bottom of the cup has a muddy sediment in it half an inch deep. This goes down your throat, and portions of it lodge by the way, and produce a tickling aggravation that keeps you barking and coughing for an hour.