The great thing about coffee is that it can be as simple or as complicated as you want. Do you simply brew your coffee black or do you choose to mix it up with some milk or cream? These aren’t your only options however. There are seemingly endless ways to jazz up your routine cup of joe, from mixing in spices to changing up the liquid you brew it in.
Here are some of the most unique yet accessible coffee recipes that you can try if you’re bored by your standard cup:
Originating in the colorful streets of Cuba, Café Cubano is a good entry-level introduction to some unique coffee recipes. This traditional Cuban coffee is brewed with dark roasts, either with an espresso machine or Moka pot. Café Cubano is a tiny drink with equal parts espresso and sweetener. The sugar and espresso are vigorously mixed together to create a thick, sweet concoction.
Scandinavian Egg Coffee
Popular in Sweden and Norway, egg coffee is a surprisingly smooth brew. Scandinavian Egg Coffee is easy to prepare- simply crack a fresh egg into coffee grounds and mix. Then pour hot water over this mixture and brew. The egg absorbs a lot of the bitterness from the coffee, making this a common way to salvage low-quality coffee. It was also a common way to increase the number of cups brewed.
Coffee With Cheese
Sticking to Scandinavia, we have coffee with cheese or Kaffeost. This popular Swedish coffee drink involves steeping creamy cheese in black coffee. Reindeer cheese is often used, which has a salty, rich flavor and thick consistency. To make Kaffeost, coat the bottom of your cup with thick cheese curds and pour brewed coffee over it. This allows the cheese to slowly release its flavors, giving your coffee a creamy, savory profile.
Black Pepper Coffee
If the caffeine in your coffee doesn’t wake you up, adding black pepper definitely will. This spicy brew is popular in parts of Africa, where fresh black pepper is mixed with coffee grounds and brewed. The resulting cup is potent, spicy, and smoky. The pepper balances out the bitterness of the coffee and adds an extra punch for those mornings when just coffee isn’t enough.
What’s more refreshing than cold brew on a hot day? Cold brew with a light, fizzy tonic. Espresso tonic is a unique coffee experience. The citrusy, carbonated tonic is a nice complement to a strong cold brew. Combining the two gives you a light, bubbly drink. Floral coffee roasts work best for this drink. To make an espresso tonic, fill a glass with ice, then add the tonic water, and finally pour in your espresso shot directly over the tonic and ice.
We’re all familiar with the standard americano- espresso diluted with hot water. This basic drink can be adapted in many ways, one of which is the fat americano. The fat americano involves mixing espresso with cold Coca-Cola. This unusual drink packs quite a caffeinated punch and can be a great summer drink. To make a fat americano, prepare your espresso shot, pour cold Coca-Cola over ice, and add your espresso shot. This gives you a sweet, complex drink. Try to select dark roasts for this brew.
If you can’t decide between coffee and tea, this is the drink for you. Yuanyang or coffee with tea is a popular drink in Hong Kong and Malaysia (where it's called kopi cham). This preparation involves mixing coffee with milk tea and serving it either hot or cold. You can mix up the proportion of tea to coffee depending on your preference, you can serve it black, or swap out normal milk with condensed milk for a creamier brew.
There can be an endless variety of combinations involving coffee. With the sheer variety of coffee profiles, there’s always something new that can be added to coffee for a fresh take on this age-old drink. Do you have any unusual coffee recipes you’d like to share?