The Egg Coffee – Recipes and Variations

The Egg Coffee – Recipes and Variations

German egg coffee from Dithmarschen and the trend coffee from Vietnam

Perhaps it must be a place like Dithmarschen on the North Sea coast of Schleswig-Holstein where such a recipe came about: the egg coffee. The bitter climate and the associated mentality of the people possibly lead to this idea: the hand-filtered coffee gets its very unique quality by adding a raw egg. It’s a recipe from the grandparents’ generation. Even long-distance travelers experience egg coffee in a completely different region of the world as a current trend – in Vietnam.

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Aromatic and tasty

Preparation the grandparents’ way means first of all: The coffee is filtered by hand. A type of preparation that only a few use in the ubiquitous coffee machines. For brewing, the coffee beans are ground by hand shortly beforehand. With this preparation the unadulterated coffee aroma is preserved, the full flavor of the beans unfolds. This creates an extremely mild and fine variant of the black, hot drink. The egg removes the bitter and toxins from the caffeine and ensures a particularly harmonious coffee.

Recipe for the German egg coffee

You can make the delicious egg coffee from Dithmarschen at home in 20 minutes.

Ingredients for 4 servings: 

  • 1 liter of water
  • 9 teaspoons of freshly ground coffee
  • 1 fresh egg
  • a pinch of sea salt

The water is boiled in a high saucepan with a few grains of salt, the egg is beaten in a little cold water with a fork. The ground coffee is then poured into this egg mixture, stirred well, added to the bubbling boiling water and kept boiling for two to three minutes. Ten minutes of steeping follow, then the coffee-egg mixture is filtered, whereby the coffee pot should be preheated with hot water. You can refine the egg coffee with milk, coffee cream or sugar.

The egg coffee from Dithmarschen is particularly suitable for home-made sheet cakes or a cake, which is often served on the table at family celebrations.

Variants of the egg coffee

It’s not just the trendy varieties of egg coffee that can be found in small, hidden bars in Vietnamese tourist centers. The original recipe from Dithmarschen is also served in different ways. One of the simple changes is to refine the egg coffee with rum – just as the “Pharisees” did on the Nordland peninsula.

If you prefer it sweeter, stir the sugar into the raw egg. Another option is to use only the egg yolk and mix it with sweet condensed milk, butter and cheese instead of water. The result is a coffee that is reminiscent of the drink variant of tiramisu in consistency and taste.

The origin of the Vietnamese egg coffee

If we believe the myths about egg coffee as the current trendsetter from Vietnam, it came about by chance. More precisely, by replacing the missing milk with the whisked egg. In any case, this legend has its roots in Nguyen Van Giang, a barista from the Vietnamese city of Hanoi.

Anyone who embarks on this intellectual track will quickly find yin and yang. Yin stands in the Chinese characters for the dark side, for example of the mountain or the river bank. Yang symbolizes the sunny side, represents impulses, activity and the masculine. Yin symbolizes silence, passivity and femininity. Transferred to the egg coffee, Yang then stands for the bitter caffeine taste and Yang for the sweet egg yolk. However, both elements complement each other and form a harmonious balance. And that closes the circle to the Chinese original meaning: In contrast to the western misunderstanding of a contradiction, Yin and Yang complement each other.

Recipe for the Vietnamese Egg Coffee

How to prepare the delicious Vietnamese egg coffee “cà phê trúng”:


  • Espresso or strong coffee
  • 1 fresh egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons of condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon honey

Mix the egg yolks with the honey and the condensed milk (alternatively 10 ml coffee cream) and whisk with a whisk. Then brew the coffee. Spread the beaten egg yolks on the coffee. You can refine the coffee with a little cocoa powder, vanilla powder or cognac. In summer, you can conjure up iced coffee with crushed ice from your coffee.

In a nutshell

Egg coffee is a type of preparation that mixes freshly ground beans with an egg or egg yolk and puts them in boiling water. Invented in Dithmarschen on the North Sea coast, there are historical anecdotes about this drink, which also explain the term “Pharisee” for coffee with rum and cream. As a trendy drink in Vietnam, the egg coffee even symbolizes the old Chinese principle of yin and yang.