Until a few years ago I had never had Vietnamese food before. I am so glad I’ve had it and man I could eat it every day. Pho (pronounced “Fa” like “Fa La La”), banh mi, bun bo hue (pronounced “Bun Bo Way”), shaking beef, and iced coffee, the list goes on. There are so many tasty things to try. Pho is a soup of noodles and meat with tones of anise. Banh mi is a sandwich on a baguette usually of pate and a crudite. Bun Bo Hue is another type of soup like pho but spicy and sour with tones of lemongrass. Vietnamese food lends some of its background to French influences due to being a former French colony but in many ways it’s very much its own. If you’ve never had any Vietnamese food I recommend you get out of you comfort zone and try something new.
Vietnamese iced coffee is unique. The coffee blend is a mix of arabica and robusta coffee beans and makes for a very strong coffee with a unique flavor. Not to be confused with espresso or cafe con leche, Vietnamese coffee stands alone. The coffee is typically served hot in a small coffee infuser atop a coffee cup that has sweetened condensed milk at that bottom. Once the coffee has finished straining from the infuser you stir it to mix in the milk then pour it over a glass of ice. It is very sweet but it is very good and helps cut the potency of the coffee.
Who doesn’t like ice cream? Ice cream is one of my favorites desserts. It only makes sense to make Vietnamese iced coffee into ice cream. This ice cream is very creamy. It has an almost chewy mouth feel. It’s rich but not too sweet. The vanilla and canela help to balance out the flavor of the coffee. If you love coffee and ice cream like I do, you will love this ice cream.
Vietnamese Iced Coffee Ice Cream
Purchase the best quality heavy cream and crème fraîche you can find. It really makes a difference in the taste of the ice cream.
16 oz heavy cream (local grass fed is best)
8 oz crème fraîche
1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup Trung Nguyen coarse ground coffee (alternatively use Cafe Du Monde with chicory if you can’t find Trung Nguyen).
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla bean seeded and pod
1/2 stick whole canela (Mexican cinnamon) *optional
1 pinch of sea salt
In a large bowl mix crème fraîche and sweetened condensed milk, set aside.
In a quart sauce pot, bring to boil cream, vanilla (seeds and pod), coffee, canela, salt, and sugar. As soon as it comes to a boil take off heat and allow to steep for 20 minutes.
Then strain with a fine mesh strainer or cheese cloth. Finally allow to cool for an additional 10 minutes.
Add coffee mixture to the crème fraîche and sweetened condensed milk, whisk until smooth. Chill in refrigerator for up 24 hours.
Once the mixture is chilled add to your ice cream machine and follow the manufacture’s instructions.