Dark Addiction… Turkish Coffee…

Lately, the life has gotten so hectic for both me and my husband. To make things easier, I have started looking for easier Turkish recipes, more comfort food style dishes and desserts to cope with stress. When I am under stress and living the life in a vacuum, I tend to gravitate towards sweets, my activity level goes way down and so does my doggy’s, because I can not take him out for his long, regular walks. Tarchin and I gain weight while my husband loses some because under stress, he forgets to eat and works non-stop once focused.

Another thing that happens during this time, the caffeine level in my blood goes through the roof. Starts with more coffee throughout the day, supplemented by Diet Coke. Then I graduate from Diet Coke to Diet Mountain Dew with a touch of Excedrin Migraine. When all else fails at night, it is time to bring out the big guns.

I make Turkish coffee.

Have you ever had a cup? Gives you the much needed kick in the butt very quickly!

Turkish coffee is not a type of coffee bean, but a method of preparation. Generally Arabica beans are used and freshly ground very fine right before coffee making. It is made in a small pot, called “cezve”, over the stove top, and served unfiltered in delicate demitasse cups. The trick to have foamy and good tasting coffee is to stir the coffee just enough without losing the coffee grounds floating on top and not to over-boil it.

Of course, the fun part of the Turkish coffee is having someone to read your fortune in the ground. After the watery part is consumed, the coffee cup is turned upside down on its saucer and the grounds start to move down slowly on the walls of the cup, leaving behind many shapes and patterns to be imaginatively interpreted by the fortune teller. From that small cup, you might learn what the entire future holds for you. Some people have a talent for it, seeing horses, roosters, birds, initials, papers and various shapes in those grounds and tell you what might have happened, or might happen. Whether you believe it or not, everyone likes the lure of the fortune and closes their cup just for the fun of it.

I will always remember one particular fortune telling. I was 15 and we went to one of my mom’s friends house for afternoon tea. For the first time and only time, I met that friend’s sister. I drank the coffee and she told me to close it so she can read my fortune. I said I don’t believe such thing and everyone said I should let her because she was really good at it and she offered it herself which was apparently a big deal. With the  hopes of hearing a possible future date with the boy I had a crush on, I turned the cup onto its plate and waited.

She did not say anything about my classes…about the boy…or about the evil friend I had or the drama that was going on in the school.

She said “There is a big sea that separates you. You will try to establish your life here so hard, you will do everything for it, but in vain. You will leave your family and live in a country on the other side of a big body of water. Your life and your future are there. Don’t push your luck here… but there is still some time for it to happen.”

That is it!

15-year old me shrugged, disappointed. No date promise!

9 year later, I packed my bags for America with the intention of staying only a year.

11 years after that, here we are!

I have never seen her even once in the past 20 years. I think I am due for another telling session.

Turkish Coffee

  • 2 teaspoon of Turkish Coffee per demitasse cup
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional – depending on how sweet you want, you can omit and drink plain (sade))

1. Measure water with your demitasse cup and put in the Turkish coffee pot, cezve.

2. Add sugar.

3. Add Turkish coffee, give it a one or two stirs with a little spoon. Do not stir more otherwise you will dissolve the coffee and not have foam on top.

4. Put on medium heat. Wait until it starts to bubble around the edges. Turn down the heat.

5. When all the coffee on top turns into foam layer, and still bubbling, pour half of the coffee in your demitasse cup.

6. Return the cezve to stovetop. Turn the heat to low-medium.

7. Wait for it to slightly boil again. Take it off of the heat, pour the rest, without disturbing any foam created.


  1. by Jen
    12:50 pm
    Nov 13, 2011

    WOW! I never had heard that story! That is amazing and a little freaky! Glad you did come here though so I could have a fantastic sister-in-law! :) This coffee looks delish by the way!

  2. by Ilke
    12:59 pm
    Nov 13, 2011

    Jen, it sounded like a BS at the time but once things started to happen, I always thought about that lady. I am glad I came here too, and married into a great family! :) Can’t wait for Thanksgiving week to hang out!

  3. by Evren
    12:55 pm
    Nov 13, 2011

    I really liked your story and the cup in the photos:) I might drink Turkish coffee now :)

  4. by Ilke
    12:57 pm
    Nov 13, 2011

    That is my favorite cup, Evren:)

  5. by Lana
    12:57 pm
    Nov 13, 2011

    I am reading your post finishing my cup of Turkish coffee:) Even after twenty years here in the U.S., it’s the only coffee I consider real coffee – the others are just coffee drinks or beverages:)
    I managed to convert many Americans and brought many “dzezvas” (just a little bit contorted in pronunciation:) from Serbia here.
    For a long time I had a small, bronze, filigreed tray with the pot and “fildzans” until a dog got a hold of the set and destroyed it:(
    And, yes, Tuesdays and Fridays are the best days for reading fortunes, but I have not had such luck to fall into hands of a talented fortune-teller:) Yet!
    Going to make me another cup!

  6. by Ilke
    1:04 pm
    Nov 13, 2011

    Lana, enjoy your coffee :) I had no idea about the best days to read the fortune.

  7. by rebecca
    10:23 pm
    Nov 16, 2011

    looks perfect and wow she got your fortune :-) i need to try making it not sure if I will get the foam right :-)

  8. by Ilke
    10:23 pm
    Nov 16, 2011

    I’ll make it for you when I visit you :)

  9. by Angie@Angiesrecipes
    5:09 am
    Nov 17, 2011

    The coffee cup looks so ancient and great! A fascinating fortune-telling story. ;-)

  10. by Parsley Sage
    8:41 am
    Nov 18, 2011

    You give me goosebumps! That’s a pretty spot on fortune :) I love the photos in this post. The coffee looks so beautiful, even the ‘closed’ ones!

    I hope things calm down soon so you can get some much deserved rest!

  11. by Snippets of Thyme
    5:23 pm
    Nov 22, 2011

    That Turkish coffee cup is so adorable. I just love it. Thank you for telling us more about Turkish coffee. I find the whole description so intriguing. And I thought that telling fortunes in tea leaves was something they made up in Harry Potter!

  12. by ninichissima
    2:26 pm
    Dec 10, 2011

    I love your blog and recipes… as I am coming from Bosnia and we were very much influenced from Ottoman Empire time, especially when it comes to food, I just love agreeing with some of your statements… and nothing beats this coffee that’s for sure!

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