New Orleans coffee (a.k.a. “Cafe Noir”) has a distinctive chocolate-caramel flavor, intensely dark color, thick consistency and lower-than-usual caffeine content thanks to its secret ingredient, chicory. Chicory is a coffee-like substance made from the dried, roasted roots of a bitter perennial herb. According to New Orleans locals, it’s what makes New Orleans coffee worth writing home about.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 7 minutes
Yield: Makes about 4 cups
- 4 tbsp. drip-ground coffee (It doesn’t have to be great quality – a little bit of salt will lessen the bitterness of cheaper coffees.)
- 2 tbsp. chicory (Chicory is available in many health food stores. Some vendors also sell pre-mixed coffee and chicory blends.)
- 1/4 tsp. salt (optional)
- 4 c. filtered water
- Sugar to taste (optional)
- Set up your drip-style coffee maker so you can add water into the filter manually. (For most coffee makers, this means rotating the brewing basket to the side and placing the pot underneath.)
- Place the coffee, chicory and salt (optional) into a filter in the brewing basket.
- Bring the water to a boil.
- Add enough water to moisten the grounds and chicory, and then pour about 1/2 cup of water into the filter.
- Wait for the water to drip through, and then add another 1/2 cup of water. Repeat until you have brewed all 4 cups.
- Serve immediately, or keep hot with your coffeemaker until ready to serve.
- (Optional) Add sugar to taste.
- (Optional) If you prefer milky coffee, you can pour equal parts New Orleans coffee and scalded milk into your cup for traditional New Orleans-style Café au Lait, or you can just add half-and-half to taste.