Cold Brew Coffee
Cold brew, or cold water extract, refers to the process of steeping coffee grounds in room temperature or cold water for an extended period. Iced coffee generally refers to coffee that is brewed hot and then chilled by pouring over or adding ice, though iced coffee can refer to cold brew coffee served on ice.
As the coffee beans in cold water extract coffee never come into contact with heated water, the process of leaching flavor from the beans produces a different chemical profile from conventional brewing methods. Coffee beans contain a number of constituents, such as caffeine, oils, and fatty acids, which are highly soluble at high temperatures. By brewing the coffee at lower temperatures, many of these solubles do not completely dissolve, resulting in lower acidity and lower caffeine content.
- 1 part coffee
- 8 parts of water
Set your grinder to its most coarse setting, you want roughly the same consistency as breadcrumbs. Any finer and you risk cloudy, grimy-tasting coffee. Place the coffee grounds in big jar, add the water, and stir to combine. Cover with a lid and let steep at room temperature or in the fridge for at least 12 hours and up to 1 day.
Line a fine-mesh strainer with a standard coffee filter and fit it over a pitcher or jar. Working in batches, slowly pour the coffee into the filter until all of the liquid has passed through the strainer (don’t force it through). Stop when you reach the solids at the bottom of the pitcher (don’t pour them in). Discard the grounds and the contents of the strainer, preferably compost it. Wash and dry the jar and put another filter on. Filter all of the coffee into the jar. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled.
Want to use ice cubes but not dilute your coffee? Freeze some of the coffee in an ice cube tray!
Serve with cream and sugar, if that’s your thing. Or simply dilute it with water if it’s too strong.