Birthed amidst social distancing, self-quarantine, and working from home is a new trend popping up across TikTok, Instagram and YouTube. Nope, it’s not some fancy choreographed dance movement to BTS, and neither is it a random video of a cat sitting on the couch watching television.
It’s what netizens call Dalgona Coffee, an iced milk drink topped with a thick frothy layer of coffee.
With 14,000 posts on Instagram and more than 17.1 million views of the hashtag #dalgonacoffee on Tik Tok alone, one would be a boomer (as my younger colleagues call me) if he or she remains unaware of this trending beverage that is changing the way people are making coffee at home. In hopes of staying relevant, I hopped onto the TikTok bandwagon, downloaded the app (yes, after three years since it was first introduced), and scrolled through all the relevant videos in an attempt to replicate it at home.
From what I gathered—although this creamy concoction seems fancy and looks like something only a barista could create—instant coffee, sugar, water, and milk are the only ingredients required. As a caffeine addict, I always have a jar of instant coffee for my morning fixes, and since I had all the other ingredients within the confines of my home, I knew I had to give this a try. Try my hand not only at making the coffee but also filming the process on TikTok—and that’s exactly what I did.
The recipe for Dalgona Coffee is simple. Depending on the quantity of dalgona you require, mix the instant coffee powder, sugar, and hot water in the ratio of 1:1:1. If you have a mixer at home, good for you, as it only requires approximately 10 minutes of beating the ingredients together at high speed to reach its desired thick, marshmallowy texture.
No mixer? No problem, to replace the milk frother, a regular whisk, and even a fork can do the job. Just be prepared to whisk it for about 400 times or more to achieve the same consistency—a perfect stay-home excuse to skip arms day in the gym.
After the dalgona is done, fill your cup with ice and pour milk (feel free to use soy, almond, or even chocolate milk for an upgraded mocha version) till it is about three-quarters full. As an icing to the cake, top it with the dalgona to the brim and sprinkle some cocoa powder to dress it up!
Don’t forget to capture a few shots for the ‘gram before mixing it all together and savouring the product of your hard work. Beautiful insta-worthy pictures aside, this cup of Dalgona Coffee was delish! The taste was all together bitter-sweet and the texture reminded me of semi-melted affogato.
Since most beverages are rather diverse, I was burning with curiosity to try for myself if this method works for other flavourings apart from coffee. I mean, all we need to do technically is to change up the instant coffee powder right? So, I rummage through my baking cabinet and got three other powders to try—green tea powder, cocoa powder, and Thai milk tea powder.
Unfortunately, despite spending more than 20 minutes of continuous mixing, these three flavourings were unable to fluff up as much as the instant coffee. The Thai milk tea came a bit closer to the original however, it still lacked the volume and the ability to produce a beautiful stiff peak at the end.
Failure aside, they do make wonderful pairings with milk. Just be reminded, they can be overly sweet since some of us might unconsciously add sugar in between with hopes of the mixture fluffing up.
There you have it. Easy peasy lemon squeezy; cafe-style Dalgona Coffee made in the comfort of your home. Since social distancing efforts have started in Singapore, why not take the time and experiment on recipes that you have always wanted to try but had no time for? Once you start, you probably can’t stop!
Check out our attempt at Dalgona Coffee on our TikTok channel too!
Dates & Times: N.A.
Price: Approximately S$10 for ingredients