This is a gelatin which I just love. My husband's grandmother used to make this from leftover coffee over the holidays. It was a wonderful treat. This recipe evolved as a popular depression era treat in this country because it did not require eggs, butter, or milk. I love to use Meyer lemon peel in making this with a whipped cream garnish, spiked or just plain. I am finding that most people like this sweetened, but I still prefer mine unsweetened. You can make these in individual servings with different amounts and types of sweetener. In Japan you will commonly find sweetened coffee gelatin. In Thailand you will find fancy parfait versions of coffee gelatin with sweetened cream gelatin layers. If you want this for an evening dessert, you might consider using a decaf coffee. How strong you make your coffee should dictate how strong your gelatin should be. I like a light gelatin with a good wobble where the light can shine through. I wish had the talent of Sarah Shatz so I could show you just how simply elegant this can be. —Sagegreen
cold filtered water
hot fair trade coffee, brewed to your taste (Jamaica Blue used here)
to 1/4 cup of sugar (turbinado or light Muscovado suggested), to taste
peel of Meyer lemon (about an inch piece), optional
one nickel size coin of fresh ginger, optional
shot of Domaine de Canton or whiskey, optional
dollops of whipped heavy cream, optional, spiked/spiced/sweetened or plain
Sprinkle the gelatin onto the cold water and let sit for 3-5 minutes. The way I prefer to brew my coffee is to heat filtered water to 190 degrees. In a filter cone place the freshly ground coffee beans. Pour in a tease of the hot water (about 1/4 the amount) to wake up the ground beans; let that small amount of water filter through. Then pour in the remaining water to complete the brew. Whisk in the hot coffee to dissolve completely the softened gelatine. Sweeten to taste. Add a small peel of Meyer lemon, the ginger, and a shot of Domaine de Canton or whiskey, if desired. Cool, then remove the peel and ginger coin. Pour into a flat pan or mold or individual molds and chill for 3 hours or more.
After chilling cut the coffee gelatin into cubes from the pan or unmold the aspic (place in hot water briefly to loosen). Garnish with whipped cream (spiked, spiced, sweetened if you like, or just plain) and a small Meyer lemon peel. In Asia coffee gelatin cubes are often served in a pool of condensed milk.