Weekend cooking – Greek coffee (video)

Personally I enjoy this kind of coffee and I’ve had this style both in Greece as well as in Egypt and Jordan. If there are any readers out there that know what the difference is between Greek or Turkish or Arabic coffee, please jump in and let us know.


A couple of summers ago when we were in Jaffa (a town that I really loved) I popped into my local for a morning coffee and breakfast and made the mistake of asking for a “Turkish” coffee. I was quickly corrected by the (Palestinian) shop owner who told me they had “Arabic” coffee. It was delicious.

You will have to deal with a few minutes of the heat for this but hey, it’s coffee and coffee is always worth a few minutes of trouble. This is a fun video (for me, at least) because here’s a son asking his mom to show everyone how to continue the coffee making tradition brought over from the old country.

I suspect John has had moments like this in his home, as many of us have had over the years. With the Greeks, this means nice coffee as well as plenty of other nice foods. In my case, our meals (Ireland, on both sides) were a lot more about boiled food, and that’s okay on occasion, but perhaps not as tasty as meals from the Mediterranean cultures.

An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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18 Responses to “Weekend cooking – Greek coffee (video)”

  1. Libertyville fitness says:

    Nice video about coffee. Coffee is good for heath and has so many benefits. I like this video and the recipe of this Greek coffee is great.
    Libertyville fitness

  2. GarySFBCN says:


  3. So what do you guys call it? :)

  4. Zorba says:

    Hee, hee! Greek great grandmother with “the sight” trumps Irish great grandmother with the sign of the cross.
    Remember, we Greeks can give the “evil eye,” too. ;-)

  5. Naja pallida says:

    Reading that, in my mind I can see my Irish Catholic great grandmother making the sign of the cross and hissing something about blasphemy and devils. :)

  6. ComradeRutherford says:

    I know a couple of farmers that only use ‘grade c’! Like the molasses of the maple world, almost black and so much flavor! I don’t like it that dark, as it has a burnt flavor.

  7. karmanot says:

    You nailed it—Grade B. That’s what we made it in old Bennington. How I miss that!

  8. ComradeRutherford says:

    In America this is called ‘cowboy’ coffee, as the cowboys would make their coffee in a sauce pan and pour it out slowly so the grounds would stay in the pan.
    I really hate sugar in my coffee. If I wanted to taste sugar, I’d eat a teaspoon of sugar. I want to taste the coffee.
    However, real maple syrup is excellent in coffee! I do that sometimes for a treat since we have a lot of real maple syrup here in Vermont. How can you tell the tourist at the checkout? They are buying the Grade A ‘fancy’, when real Vermonters buy Grade A ‘dark amber’ or Grade B. That is the stuff with the flavor!

  9. Drew2u says:

    Funny, I was in a coffee shop in Ann Arbor, MI and they had Turkish Coffee on the menu. What I got when I ordered it was essentially a cup of espresso and a squeeze-container of condensed, sweetened milk. I had no idea what I was supposed to do with it!

  10. GarySFBCN says:


  11. GarySFBCN says:

    Being part Turk and part Greek (yes, I know), this was common in my childhood home. I still have my grandmother’s cezve, that belonged to her grandmother.

    Interestingly, there is an Afghani restaurant here in SF and about 28 years ago, I used to eat there quite often. As they had Turkish coffee on the menu, I’d always order it after a meal. Sometimes this would be quite late, and the owners would close the restaurant, sit down with us we’d talk into the wee hours. I learned so much from them – about Afghanistan’s Buddhist past that, after the Islamic conversion, created an interesting, meditative variant of Islam, how all the educated people fled when the Soviets invaded, etc.

    Years later I discovered that the owner – with whom I spent probably 40-50 hours in very personal conversation over 5 years – is Hamid Karsai’s brother.

  12. Zorba says:

    OMG, Jim, my great-grandmother did the same thing! Although it was kind of scary to us, because she did not always tell “good” fortunes, and it was very creepy how accurate she really was. I think it may have been because she was just really, really good at reading people. But we always kind of believed that Yia Yia may have had some kind of “second sight.” ;-)

  13. Naja pallida says:

    Wasn’t The Great Bouzouki a character on the Muppet Show? :) Coincidentally, another thing borrowed and adapted from Turkic culture. Not sure why, but I’ve always loved bouzouki and baglama music… and I especially love that it has been twice borrowed, and is often used in Irish music as well.

  14. Naja pallida says:

    There isn’t much difference throughout most of the Arabic world either, and pretty much everywhere you go they will claim Turkish coffee as their own, but it’s basically the same… and if you ordered a Turkish coffee, they’d know exactly what you wanted anyway. If you see something on a menu that says “Egyptian” or “Lebanese” coffee, chances are it is what you know as Turkish coffee.

  15. Jim says:

    Btw, there is a kick ass Greek Festival here in Redondo Beach,Ca this weekend! They have a Kaffenio booth, and most of them are calling it “Turkish Coffee!” Great bouzouki band too!

  16. Jim says:

    My mother was born in Istanbul, but is ethnically Greek. My Grandmother, Yia Yia, used to read the patterns left in the cup from Turkish coffee. She would always tell good fortunes. I don’t know how many poor women got divorced after my Yia Yia told them their marriage would last forever! lol!

  17. Zorba says:

    That’s pretty much what I remember. When I was growing up, everyone called it Turkish coffee, even in the Greek restaurants. Then in the 70’s, it became Greek coffee.

  18. There is no difference between Greek and Turkish. After the war in ’73, the Greeks stopped calling it Turkish coffee and renamed it Greek (seriously).

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