Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Cold brewed iced coffee at home

While on a summer time road trip I drink cup after cup of iced tea.  I buy them at McDonalds, where I also stop to pee, and always get the unsweetened, with lemon, and several packets of sugar to add because I like drinks that are crunchy on the bottom. 

When I am at home in the summer I drink cup after cup of iced coffee.  I love it.  I love it super sweet with whole milk and sugar, I like it black with nothing added, I like it from the bodega for $2, or at brunch for $3 with no refills, but the best place to have it is at home.  For cents on the dollar. 

I cold brew my coffee to make iced coffee.  This came up for a couple of reasons.  One I hate diluted weak coffee, and making hot coffee to pour over ice weakens it. But more importantly, when I live in a 3rd floor sun filled apartment with no air conditioner in the kitchen I did anything possible to not heat up the kitchen.  So cold brew coffee it was.  

I made my cold brew in my french press.  I read several variations of other ways to do it but I had a french press and it kept me from drinking bucket loads of coffee.  (Why are we not supposed to drink buckets of coffee? I don't know, it just seems like one of those things we should limit ourselves on.)

Anyhow, this is how you do it.  At night: Scoop your regular scoop of coffee into your french press. (However much you use to make regular coffee in there.) Fill to near the top with tap water, (or filtered tap if you prefer), put the top on the press, but DO NOT PRESS DOWN! Leave the plunger up, leave the whole thing on your counter and go to bed. 

In the morning you can take the top off, stir once, replace the top and gently press down the plunger.  You now have delicious home cold brewed coffee.  It will be less bitter then hot brewed coffee, and in theory have more caffeine.  Some folks use this as "coffee concentrate" and will do odd things with it like dilute it with water and microwave it for a cup of hot coffee, yergh.   I like to pour it over ice and drink it straight.  It isn't bitter so I don't have to add milk or sugar, though I sometimes put a teaspoon of sugar over the ice before I pour in the coffee, and add a splash of soy and then drink it with a coffee stirrer, crunching the sugar up from the bottom.  YUM!

Here is the nytimes article on it, with measurments, and how to do it in a jar (hint, throw it all in a jar, and filter it in the morning),

I'll take some pictures next time I make a batch. :)

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