“She tore a bun apart, savoring the rich savory-salt taste of the pork, the chewiness of the white dough. She washed it down with a swig of black super sweet coffee.” – City of Bones
“She took a sip – no milk and lots of the sugar, the way she liked it.” – City of Ashes
Although I have only just finished reading City of Bones and City of Ashes I can already tell you, Clary love’s black coffee sweetened with lots of sugar – and it sounds utterly divine. I am not a big hot coffee drinker, I prefer tea, but I absolutely love iced coffee. Don’t get me wrong I don’t mind hot coffee and it doesn’t taste bad… so long as it has been sweetened with plenty of sugar. There is just something so delightful about an iced coffee on a hot summer day than an iced tea.
Since it has been getting quite warm here in Jersey I decided to make iced coffee instead of hot coffee, which making is a world of difference. Iced coffee actually tastes best cold brewed, rather than traditional brewing and cooling down. Cold brewing produces a smooth, less bitter, low acidic flavor. Oh and did I forget to mention that cold brewing takes 12 plus hours, ick! Obviously, if you do not have the patience to wait you could brew coffee how you normally would, bring it down to room temperature then place it in the fridge for a few hours. It deffinitely would have been easier to do the latter method but I chose to be difficult.
The most pain in the ass part of the cold brew method is sweetening the coffee with sugar. I’ve seen other recipes calling for buying the flavored syrups or even making your own flavored simple syrup using extracts, sugar and boiling water that are added after you have cold brewed the coffee for 12 hours. I am all about doing things as natural as possible so opted to make a natural simple syrup. I chose to use Turbinado sugar because it is less processed than white sugar and the light caramel flavor is a bit sweeter. I went against the grain here a bit, instead of adding the simple syrup to the coffee afterward to sweeten I actually cold brewed the coffee in my simple syrup. It took longer to make but I killed two birds with one stone – it was ready upon pouring into glasses.
To make flavored coffee you may add an extract (vanilla, coconut, almond, etc.) to your simple syrup or you could use flavored coffee. Since I always have flavored coffee on hand, I chose not to add any extracts to the simple syrup.
So if you’ve decided to be as difficult as I am then your next step is to buy a container you can cold brew your coffee in. So many companies sell special cold brew jugs now that iced coffee has become so popular. The key to finding a good container is one that has a way to pull the coffee out. The coffee grinds must come out after a maximum brew time of 24 hours. I actually use Teavana iced tea pitchers that I purchased when they went out of business. When I began making iced coffee though it was actually quite difficult to find the right container since it was not as popular as it is now. I started off with using a small and simple French Press and a heat-safe tupperware container. I always found French Press’s the easiest way to brew coffee in general because there are no wires, it’s small, easy to clean, produces a nice flavor and they are cheap. I paid $25.00 for my Bodum but I’ve seen other brands online sell for as low as $15.00. If you decide to go the tupperware method, I suggest you follow this tutorial from The Pioneer Woman.
French Press Iced Coffee
4 Cups Boiled Water
6 Spoonfuls Turbinado Sugar (or too taste, this gives a super sweet flavor)
4 Scoops Coffee (I used ccocnut flavored)
Milk, Half & Half or cream (I love Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Sweet Cream)
Boil water, allow to cool for 20 minutes before transferring hot water to a heat safe container. Place all the sugar in hot water, stir so it is dissolved and let water cool for 30 minutes on the counter before placing in fridge overnight or a minimum of 2 hours. If you are choosing to use a truly heat safe container then all the cool downs I am suggesting don’t really need to be done except for the last one.
Scoop coffee into the French press or your container of choice. Pour refrigerated simple syrup over top of coffee and stir slightly so all the beans are wet. Place the cap on and place in the fridge for 12-hours. If using a french press put a paper towel or the plunger on top if it fits in your fridge but do not press down!
Remove coffee from fridge, for the french press: f the plunger is not already being used as a lid, remove makeshift lid and place plunger on top. Press the plunger down. For everything else, remove the grounds and enjoy!
Pour coffee into glasses full of ice. Add milk or cream if desired.
The french press method will make 2 servings
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