Iced Coffee

If you live anywhere near where I do, it’s a little strange that I’m posting this today–on what happens to be the coldest day we’ve had in who knows how long! But when I tried out the following recipe (which was last weekend) it was a hot, sticky 90 degrees!

I found this recipe about 9 months ago and knew I’d be trying it as soon as our hot weather hit, and I didn’t waste any time. I browse Pioneer Woman‘s site and blog often and when I saw this recipe I bookmarked it immediately.

If you’re a coffee lover, take a look at this and maybe even try it–it’s a delicious method for brewing iced coffee. As Ree says, “Iced coffee is a complicated thing, and there are many different approaches. One would think that one could merely pour brewed coffee into a glass full of ice and call it a day…but I find that method extremely flawed. First, no matter how packed with ice the glass is, once the hot coffee hits, some of the ice is bound to melt. This has two disastrous results:

1. The overall strength of the coffee flavor is diluted.
2. The iced coffee isn’t as cold as it could (or should) be. The finished glass of iced coffee should be frigid, not sorta cold with half-melted ice cubes floating around.

What follows is Ree’s solution, modified slightly from a recipe she found in Imbibe Magazine:

“I start with a big ol’ container. I love these food storage containers, by the way. I got these at restaurant supply, but Sam’s Club had them last time I was there.

You can use a big bowl, a large pitcher…even a really clean bucket will work if you’re going for a huge quantity. (Or you can halve the original quantity and use a pitcher.)

Rip open a pound of ground coffee. Any kind will do; the stronger and richer the better.

Pour in the coffee.

Pour in 8 quarts (2 gallons) cold water.

Give it a stir to make sure all the grounds make contact with the water…

Then cover the container and go live your life as the coffee steeps for at least eight hours. (And you can go much longer if you’d like.)

When the time has passed, grab a separate container and place a fine mesh strainer over the top.

Place a couple of layers of cheesecloth inside the strainer…

It’ll take awhile for all the liquid to pass through. (Doesn’t this look like one of the acid pools at Yellowstone?)

Use a spoon to gently press/force the last of the liquid through. And note: I’ve tried the straining method without the cheesecloth, and stray grounds did make it through the mesh strainer. Definitely try to use cheesecloth (or even paper towels) to filter out the finer pieces.

You can store the liquid in the same container, or you can transfer it to a pitcher or other dispenser. Though it’s difficult to wait, I refrigerate this gorgeous concoction before consuming it. It’s meant to be cold!

Note: this amount of coffee concentrate lasts me a good three weeks to a month if kept tightly covered in the fridge.”

I definitely recommend reading Ree’s entire post here.

Now that you have your iced coffee concentrate, all you need to do is fill a glass with ice and fill ‘er up! I’ve been filling my glass about 3/4 of the way with the coffee and the rest of the way with some cream. It’s been SO GOOD to start my mornings with some rich, strong, cold coffee in the mornings. And yes, even this morning–when it’s been cold outside… I think I’ve already shifted into “it’s hot outside, I want something cold to drink” mode, no matter what.