Thursday, October 3, 2013

Recipe: Cold-Brewed Iced Coffee with Cinnamon Vanilla Ice Cubes

     There is absolutely nothing better than iced coffee. I drink it all year round, even in the coldest of months; I just can't get enough. The only downfall to my obsession is that it is never as good from home as it is from the coffee shop. At least it wasn't before I discovered the cold-brewing method. Cold-brewing your coffee takes away the bitter flavor created from making iced coffee with regularly brewed grounds. It is also far less acidic, so this method is great for people with sensitive stomachs. Sounds good, right? 
Here's what you'll need for both the coffee concentrate and flavored iced cubes: Coffee, milk, half and half (optional), vanilla extract, cinnamon, and sugar/sweetener.
In a french press, add 2/3 cup coffee grounds and 3 cups of cold water. Stir the mixture, put the top on, and press the plunger down until the screen is just above the mixture; don't let any liquid through your screen. Put the french press into the refrigerator for at least twelve hours or overnight. Don't have a french press? No worries. You can make the coffee and water mixture in a large container, and when your coffee concentrate is done, simply line a strainer with a coffee filter and strain the liquid through.
Now for the cubes! In a small saucepan, add one cup of milk, 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and sugar/sweetener to meet your desired level of sweetness; I used one packet of Stevia, and also added a splash of half and half for a bit more richness. Place on low heat, and whisk the ingredients together while bringing it to a simmer. You'll want to keep stirring to prevent any scorching. I left mine on the heat for just under ten minutes, but feel free to check for flavor at anytime. When the milk has steeped, remove your pan from the flame and let cool. Pour the liquid back into the measuring cup and fill your ice trays. Let these freeze overnight. 
And, voila! In the morning, you'll have cold coffee and the flavored cubes. The concentrate is obviously very strong, so you can add water or milk to find your prefered taste. Or, just add your cubes and the let sweetness melt in. The coffee concentrate can sit in the fridge for up to a week. Enjoy!
With love,

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