Iced Coffee - A Summer Staple
Skip the drive thru and try making your own delicious iced coffee at home.
"Man does not live by coffee alone. Have a danish." ~Anonymous
I am definitely not a coffee connoisseur. My husband makes a pot in the morning and I drink a cup or two, more out of habit than anything else. Of course things change for me when the warm weather kicks in. That's when I really want a coffee. An iced one.
I've tried making my own by pouring the hot coffee over ice but it just doesn't taste right (too bitter). Once in awhile I will treat myself and buy one but in general stopping for coffee every morning doesn't fit into my schedule or my budget. So what's a girl to do? Find a recipe and make it at home, of course!
I found a great recipe for homemade iced coffee that is so easy it is ridiculous. Two ingredients: ground coffee and cold water. Put 'em together, let 'em mingle for about 12 hours, strain it and as my husband would say, "Boom. Done. Call it a day." The taste is fantastic and it's super cheap. Definitely a win-win situation.
We stopped in at T.J. Maxx and found a really cool 2 gallon glass cold beverage dispenser for $15. Perfect for storing this iced coffee-it'll keep for about a week in the fridge in an airtight container.
A few tips...1) It's eight quarts of water, not eight cups. I mention this only because the first time I made it I used eight cups of water and I couldn't figure out why I only had three mason jars full of iced coffee. Whoops. It still tasted pretty good but I was wide awake until about 3 a.m. 2) You can use any type of milk or sweetener you like - but the half and half/sweetened condensed milk combo is my personal favorite. 3) To keep your coffee from getting watered down try pouring some of the coffee mixture into ice trays and freezing them. Use those in place of regular ice cubes.
And now, on to the recipe...
- 1 lb. ground coffee (I used Cafe Bustelo which is really strong and just happened to be the cheapest coffee in the store-score!)
- 8 quarts cold water
- Half & half (to taste)
- Sweetened condensed milk (2-3 tbsp or to taste)
- Ice cubes
- In a large container mix coffee with water.
- Stir to be sure all the coffee mixes in.
- Cover and let sit on counter (at room temperature) for 8-12 hours.
- Line a strainer with a couple layers of cheesecloth and set the strainer over a pitcher.
- Pour coffee mixture through the strainer.
- Either pick up the cheesecloth and squeeze last bits of liquid out with your hands or use a spoon to push it down - there will be some stuck in the grounds (and you don't want to lose any!).
- Discard grounds.
- Put coffee into the fridge.
- Fill a glass about half full with ice cubes.
- Add half and half and sweetened condensed milk to taste.