We all have certain habits that we carry along with us while travelling, and for me, that habit is a daily cup of good coffee. No matter where I go, “good coffee shops” is always one of the top-searched terms. And while the point of travelling for many of us is to step out of our comfort zone and routine, and to experience different cultures, the luxury of being a coffee lover is that it has become so globally prevalent that every culture has their put own spin on it. So really, coffee is part of the travelling and cultural experience–for me, at least.
One of the most unique coffee experiences while travelling has been in Vietnam. If you’ve never had Vietnamese coffee, it is made with medium to coarse ground dark roast coffee in a small metal filter, which is then poured into a glass of ice with a tablespoon or two of condensed milk. It’s rich, delicious, creamy, and sweet. I don’t particularly have a sweet tooth, but I certainly got addicted to the robust flavours quickly.
When I visited Vietnam, the coffee didn’t ever seemed to be consumed without condensed milk (coffee was introduced by the French colonists when fresh milk was limited), which would be an issue if you preferred a plant-based diet. Luckily, there is a way to recreate the sweet, creaminess of condensed milk the vegan way! There’s no reason why a dietary preference should restrict you from experiencing other cultures.
Make delicious vegan Vietnamese iced coffee at home!
Vietnamese iced coffee, also known as cà phê đá, will require some strong dark roast coffee (I would say somewhere between a regular brewed coffee and espresso) and condensed milk. Here is what you need to recreate vegan condensed milk.
Vegan Condensed Milk
What you need:
1 can full-fat coconut milk
⅓ cup sugar
Pinch of salt
½ tsp vanilla extract
How to prepare:
- Mix in the coconut milk, sugar, and salt in a saucepan over medium-low heat for about 45 minutes.
- Continuously stir to prevent burning until the mixture is reduced to a thick consistency (about one cup).
- Stir in the vanilla extract.
- Store in a sealable container in the fridge for up to two weeks.
If you’re making your Vietnamese coffee right away, allow the condensed milk to cool down a bit. Pour in one or two tablespoons of condensed milk, add ice, then top off with strong robust coffee. Stir and enjoy!
What’s your own spin on making Vietnamese coffee? Share with us any tips or tricks! And don’t limit your vegan condensed milk to just coffee. Drizzle it over some strawberries, with waffles and pancakes, or enjoy with other desserts!