Today’s “Home Brew”- Secret to great iced coffee without great expense
I love my coffee, especially when its strong and rich with a bold flavor minus the acidity which, in my mind, detracts from the flavor.
Now for those of you not from ’round here, the South is said to have four seasons: Almost Summer, Summer, Still Summer, and Christmas. Based on this, you can imagine that there are times of the year when a iced coffee is relished far more than hot.
If you’ve ever tried to make iced coffee at home, you know that its not as easy as pouring coffee over ice. You end up with a watered down version of coffee which becomes even more watered down and weak when you add milk or sugar. Still, there has to be a better option than heading out and paying someone $5 for a few minutes of divine caffeinated pleasure – and there is. ~smiles~ Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate.
I’ve been making this “home brew” for over two years now, much to the delight of myself and Mama. She recently started making her own but until then I’d brew up extra and share my “special recipe” with her as well. I can only imagine what the neighbors thought when Mama’s car pulled up to my driveway and I’d run her out a mason jar and send her on her way. Come by either of our houses at any given time and you’ll find pint sized mason jars of “the recipe” in our refrigerators ~giggle~. I feel just like one of the Baldwin sisters….
Cold brew coffee is brewed in cold water on your counter top for a period of about twelve to fifteen hours, depending on the strength you prefer. Coffee brewed using this method has significantly less acidity and far more full bodied flavor than coffee brewed with the traditional hot method.
One of the pitys of coffee for me has always been that it never tastes as decadent as it smells. Cold brew brings you closer to this flavor than any other method I have come across. Whats more, cold brew coffee made at home rivals anything bought in a coffee house at a tiny fraction of the price – I actually like my cold brew better!
This concentrate is not just for iced coffees though, you can easily use it to make hot coffee in the morning without the fuss of brewing. This is perfect for those who have problems with traditional coffee being too harsh on their stomachs. Simply mix equal parts concentrate and water (or vary proportions to taste), heat and go!
This concentrate will easily keep a month or more in your fridge with no change in flavor and you know if I’m showing you how to do it, you aren’t going to need any fancy schmancy equipment either.
You likely have all you need at home already. I prefer to grind my beans fresh but you can certainly use pre-ground coffee. However, if you’re looking to amp up your coffee experience, I strongly suggest buying beans and grinding it fresh before each brewing, be it cold brewing or hot. You’ll find the difference is extraordinary! A grinder such as this one can be picked up for around thirty dollars or so. This is my Hamilton Beach one, of course!
I use a quart sized (32 ounces) canning jar to brew my coffee in and then store it in pint sized jars. You can use a plastic pitcher or container for this as well if you prefer. I like to brew mine in glass as there isn’t the risk of tainting my coffee with another flavor this way.
- Container to brew coffee grounds in
- Coffee filters (largest size you can find)
- Coffee beans and grinder or pre-ground beans
- Bowl to strain coffee into
You’ll need 1 cup of ground coffee.
Place grounds in jar
Fill jar with water.
I leave about an inch of head space at the top.
Place lid on jar and give it a little shake to make sure all grounds are wet.
Now just sit the jar on your counter for at least twelve hours.
Once the time has passed (I usually brew mine at night and strain it in the morning), place your strainer over a large bowl. You can also use a collander for this if you prefer.
Line strainer with a coffee filter. These are the type for twelve cup coffee makers, the largest I could find.
Pour coffee in the filter and let it strain through a little at a time.
This is after I’ve strained about half of my concentrate. I usually go through two filters when I do this. Throw your first filter away and replace with a clean one before pouring the remainder of your concentrate. It will take some time for all of your concentrate to strain out. I usually let it sit for about half an hour before pouring the remainder so it takes me about an hour to have my concentrate all strained and ready.
Using this method, a quart sized jar yields about a pint and a half of concentrate. Now mixing it up is purely a matter of taste but I am going to show you how I make mine purely as a point of reference.
Four ounces of concentrate…
Four ounces of milk…
Skim, Whole, 2%, whatever cranks your tractor.
Fill with ice and add three packets of Splenda and I’m a happy gal!
Honestly, this beats any iced coffee I’ve ever had away from home. Its rich, flavorful, and completely decadent.
Cold Brew Coffee
- 1 Cup ground coffee
- 32 ounce container (1 quart)
- Large basket type coffee filters
Place ground coffee in container, fill with cold water. Cover and let sit for twelve to fifteen hours. Place strainer over large bowl and put coffee filter inside. Slowly pour over about half of the coffee and let sit until strained. Replace filter and repeat.
To make regular coffee: place equal parts coffee concentrate and water in cup and heat.
To make iced coffee: Place equal parts concentrate and milk in glass. Add ice, sweetened as desired. You may find my preference for iced coffee a bit strong for you so leave room to add some water to weaken it if need be!Print This Recipe
This has been a very busy week at home with the kids and their activities. I hope to get caught up on emails and comments this weekend! Thank you all and have a fabulous Friday!