cold-brewed coffee concentrate

  • Currently 4/5
better for your stomach as brewing coffee with cold water doesn't release as much acid (about 67% less) as using hot water does. it's even better for cold coffee drinks as the bitter, acidic flavor from hot-brewed coffee intensifies as you refrigerate it. so now you can have a smooth cuppa' joe on the rocks, with no acid reflux. sweeter flavor so less sugar needed and apparently less caffeine so if you want your jolt, add a shot of espresso...or just drink more. if you like your coffee black, this might not have that acidic bite that you are used to.

recipe adapted from Blue Bottle Coffee company by Mark Bittman for 8 cups of New Orleans-style

click here for more information from National Coffee Association of U.S.A., Inc.

yields: 3 cups coffee concentrate
waiting time: 12-16 hours
1 c medium-coarse ground coffee (preferrably a dark roast)
3 c cold water
special equipments
4-cup pyrex or a non-reactive 1-quart container for steeping
stainless steel fine-mesh sieve, coffee filter or 2-3 layers of cheesecloth
glass jar(s) or non-reactive container to store coffee in fridge
1. put coffee in your steeping container. add 1 cup water, stirring to wet the grounds, then add remaining 2 cups water. cover and let steep at room temperature (or refrigerated if you really want to reduce the acid flavor) for 12 hours, up to 24 hours for a stronger flavor.
2. strain coffee concentrate through a fine-mesh sieve or a medium sieve, lined with cheesecloth (i was being cheap and lazy and used a paper napkin). if you are making a huge batch, it might be easier to strain through a medium sieve first to remove the bulk of the coffee grinds, then through a fine one, otherwise, your coffee will take a very long time to drip.
3. roughly the ratio of coffee concentrate to water is 1:3. some use 1:1 for a stronger kick:
1.  to make iced coffee, fill a glass with ice, add ¼ cup coffee concentrate and 3/4 to 1 cup milk, then stir.
2.  to make café au lait, heat up 3/4 to 1 cup milk in a saucepan or microwave, then pour into a mug and add ¼ cup coffee concentrate.
3.  to make Vietnamese iced coffee, add 1-2 tbsp of sweetened condensed milk to 1/4 cup coffee concentrate in a tall glass; stir til dissolve; add cracked ice and enjoy (preferably use a chicory/dark roast blend).
4. store concentrate in glass jars. it will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks (8 weeks according to Cook's Illustrated).
coffee to water ratio for steeping is roughly 1:3, depending on your taste. if you want to make a huge batch, 1 lb of coffee to 10 cups of water is the recommended amount.

if you have a large french press, use in place of the straining container, since it already has its own filter.

chicory is the main ingredient that distinguishes New Orleans-style from any other coffee beverage. growing up we used Café du Monde's brand mainly because it was easily found at the Vietnamese markets that we went to and inexpensive (about $5/lb). one of these days will have to try different brands to see how the better half lives it up.

article with info about cold-brewed coffee
Dish   BeveragePrep Time   less than 15 minutes
Features   Dairy-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian

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