Filter Coffee

A tasty South Indian filter coffee recipe that will have you coming back for more! Add hot milk to this coffee and serve it with tiffin breakfast items like upma, idli, dosa, uttapam or medu vada. Make in just 15 minutes!

About Filter Coffee

I am a regular tea drinker but I do enjoy filter coffee from time to time so I am sharing a traditional way of making this beverage. It is also known as filter kaapi in Tamil language and Mysore filter coffee.

This popular coffee is also served in South Indian hotels, restaurants and street-side food stalls.

You will need the South Indian coffee filter to make this tasty hot beverage. It is available in most utensil shops in South India, West India and also online.

This method is similar to the french press coffee decoction however the equipment used is unique and different. Plus the apparatus is very simple to use.

You will need coffee powder to prepare the coffee. My parents travel to South India quite often so they normally pick up coffee powder from there so I always have stock. The taste of the coffee largely depends on the type of ground coffee used.

So buy a good brand of filter coffee powder. Keep in mind that the filter coffee powder is different from instant coffee.

How to make Filter Coffee

The picture below shows a South Indian coffee filter which makes for 2 to 3 tumblers (small glasses) of this drink. It comes in various sizes.

The parts include two cylindrical vessels. The top vessel has perforations in it and it fits into the lower vessel which collects the coffee brew. There is also a pressing disc with a handle and a lid.

Making Coffee Decoction

Now let’s move on to the coffee! Use ground coffee to prepare filter coffee. Place the top vessel on the lower one. Then take 3 teaspoons of coffee and place it in the top vessel with the perforations.

For this filter use the following proportions:

  • 4 teaspoons coffee powder – for strong coffee
  • 3 teaspoons coffee powder – for medium strong
  • 1.5 to 2 teaspoons coffee powder – for light coffee
  • Once the coffee has brewed, heat ¾ cup of full fat or whole milk until it starts to boil. You can even start heating milk just before all the water percolates.

    For a vegan filter coffee heat plant based milk like cashew milk, oats milk, almond milk or soy milk until hot. Don’t boil them as they may curdle or separate.

  • Serving Filter Coffee

    While the coffee is almost ready to be served. It is made frothy and bubbly with a special technique that I am sharing below. To make the coffee frothy a pan shaped like vessel is used called as dabarah or davara. The coffee is served in a small glass placed on dabarah. You can also use a frother or any other small sauce pan, if you don’t have this small shaped pan.

    20. Now take dabarah or davara which is a small pan-shaped vessel that is used to cool the coffee. Pour the coffee back and forth from the tumbler into the davara. This will help the sugar to dissolve and a top layer of foam will form on the coffee.

  • Expert Tips

    • Davara: I like to pour the coffee back and forth from the davara and tumbler two to three times to ensure that there are no sugar granules at the bottom of the mixture. It also gives the coffee a nice layer of froth at the top. However, you don’t have to do this step if you are short on time. You can also use any other small sauce pan instead of davara.
    • Milk: Make sure you heat the milk before you pour it into the sugar as you don’t want cold coffee. Before you pour the milk into sugar strain it to get rid of the layer of cream (malai) formed on the top. If you don’t mind then pour the milk in the coffee without a strainer.
    • Coffee: Use good quality filter coffee powder for this recipe. You can also alter the strength of this coffee to suit your preference. If you want strong coffee then use 4 teaspoons of coffee powder. For medium coffee use 3 teaspoons of coffee powder and for a weaker coffee use 1.5 to 2 teaspoons of coffee.
    • Sugar: Feel free to add more sugar to this recipe if you have a sweet tooth and if you like your coffee plain then skip the sugar altogether.

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