F is for Filter Coffee

The letter ‘C’ should have ideally been for coffee but that seemed to be too generic. Sure, I do love coffee in all its forms but filter coffee holds a special place in my life.

I have had a love affair with this drink from as long as I can remember. When I was young, my grandmother would bribe me with coffee in order to get some lactose into my system.  Of course, it’s also by virtue of my Tambrahm-ness. A South-Indian household is incomplete without the ubiquitous, heady aroma of filter coffee, or kaapi (as we call it) that ushers you in. It’s the smell that takes me down memory lane – back to my grandparents place, solving Math sums with my grandfather, my attention focused on his slurps rather than my book, and  4 AM weddings.

What makes kaapi different from its counterparts?

The ingredients are minimal – freshly brewed decoction,  boiling milk, and sugar (which is optional). Of course, you have to ensure that you buy the coffee powder from a reliable store (South-Indian preferably, because the retailers are fool proof and  ‘know their shit’). Choosing the right mix can be tricky and it depends on one’s tastes. The perfect blend of roasted and ground coffee beans keeps you craving for more, and turns the likes of me into caffeine addicts.

Here’s the apparatus for creating some magic.

Using a filter has its benefits, be it on Instagram or for brewing coffee – one enhances your selfie while the other awakens your taste buds.

The Internet has no dearth of filter coffee recipes. But don’t forget to

  • take a long whiff of the roasted powder. That’s right. That’s the smell of heaven.
  • appreciate the grains of freshly ground coffee. Hold some in your palm. Watch them slip between your fingers and be hypnotized.
  • make sure the coffee is frothy when served. Coffee without froth is vapid and dull, and will certainly worsen your Monday mornings.
  • serve it in a steel tumbler and davara (Tamil equivalent of a saucer)
  • not add tons of sugar and dilute its flavour . That’s not kaapi. That’s diabetes.
  • savour every sip till the last drop and allow the caffeine to reinvigorate you.

Once you’re hooked to Kaapi, there’s no going back. Punctuate your mornings, afternoons or evenings, summers, monsoons and winters with this elixir. It’s the perfect ice-breaker. The ideal conversation-starter.

F is for Filter Coffee

My theme for the A-Z Blogging Challenge is ‘The A to Z of some my favourite things’. Stay tuned for more posts, this April!