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Cardamom coffee

(If you like this recipe, try out the next evolution, the Mexicano, a Mexican-style mocha.)

When I first read about the idea of putting cardamom in coffee, I was intrigued. I’ve always appreciated the effects of fresh, green cardamom pods in cooking, and the idea of an old Arabic tradition for welcoming a guest with hot cardamom coffee was too cool to not figure out.

But all the recipes I found didn’t treat the coffee beans, cardamom seeds, or resulting brew in a way I liked. I think many relied upon an older way of making coffee, where you simmer chunky-ground beans and seeds in a pot, then strain and sweeten. I’m more of a modern, fresh-ground coffee type of person. So I built a recipe that worked for me. This is the recipe for a single cup, increase proportions for more brew, adjusting the quantity of cardamom seeds to taste.

  1. In your coffee grinder put your measure of roasted coffee beans, quantity to taste.
  2. Take one to three green cardamom pods and crush them on the counter. Separate the seeds from the green skin, put the seeds in the grinder with your beans. (I found three pods works for me, some people I’ve gave this to prefer two pods, use one pod if you want a lighter taste or just as starting place to work up from. For me, four pods per cup was too much, but I can see people who would prefer more pods.)
  3. Grind the coffee beans and cardamom seeds together until the coffee is the grind level you want to work with.
  4. Brew the coffee the way you prefer.
  5. The resulting brew may be more bitter than you like. As I usually use a touch of cream or milk to lighten and sweeten my coffee, I also use a touch of honey in this cardamom coffee.