Turkish Coffee



Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes


    orta sekerli

Appears in

Classic Turkish Cooking

By Ghillie Basan

Published 1995

  • About

A great deal of importance is given to coffee-making. Sometimes the task falls to the only member of the household who possesses the right touch. Brazilian coffee beans are the favourite, passed through the grinder two or three times to achieve the correct fineness of powder. The coffee is measured by the spoon, 1 teaspoon per person; the water by the tiny cylindrical cup, 1 cup per person. It is made in a cezve, a long-handled, tin-lined brass pot which differs in size depending on the number of cups to be catered for. The choice of how you have your coffee ranges from sade, no sugar, az şekerli, slightly sweet, and orta şekerli, medium-sweet, to tatlı, sweet — all must be served with froth on top. In some parts of Anatolia cardamom seeds are crushed into the ground coffee to enhance the taste.


  • 1 coffee cup of cold water
  • 1 teaspoon fresh coffee, finely ground
  • 1 teaspoon sugar


  • Put the cupful of cold water into the cezve and spoon the sugar and coffee on top. Using a teaspoon, quickly stir the sugar and coffee into the surface of the water to give the froth a kick-start, taking care not to touch the bottom of the cezve with the spoon. Put the cezve over a medium flame and heat through, gradually stirring the outer edges of the surface into the middle, creating an island of froth. Pour about one third of the coffee into the cup to warm it up, and return the cezve to the heat. Continue to use the teaspoon to gather the froth into the middle. Just as it is about to bubble up, take the cezve off the heat and immediately pour the rest of the coffee into the warming cup. The coffee must be served hot, with sufficient froth on top, and should be left to stand for a minute before drinking to let the coffee grains settle. (Froth enthusiasts spoon a little extra froth into the cup before pouring the coffee.)