Best Recipes for Iced Coffee at Home

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Wednesday, July 16, 2014, 2:00 AM
Iced coffee is like the weather: Everyone complains about it, but no one ever does anything about it. So even as the price of New York’s official humidity antidote rises like hemlines on Cinemax, too few of us are taking matters into our own hands and out of our wallets.

The reason? Iced coffee snobs make the process sound so complicated, throwing around terms like “cold-brew concentrate” and “Japanese hot-brew style,” singing the praises of machines like “filtrons” and “vacuum presses,” and slipping into the metric system to measure beans, water and even ice.

We just want the cold stuff. Must we also get a doctorate degree? And how many grams of ­water are in a cube of ice anyway? It’s enough to make you run to Starbucks to de-stress … with an overpriced iced coffee.

“Making iced coffee is intimidating for most people,” says Christopher Saphire, the head barista at Birch Coffee, which has four locations in Manhattan. “But it doesn’t have to be.”

People get scared because making iced coffee at home is like being interrogated by the bad cop in a B-movie: You can do it the hard way or you can do it the easy way.

The hard way is the increasingly trendy “cold brew” process. For this method, you need lots and lots of coffee, lots and lots of water, a really big bucket and about 24 hours of waiting before you strike black gold.

But the best coffee shops, such as Stumptown and Blue Bottle, use this method.stumptown_coffee_bottle

The easy way is the so-called “Japanese” style, which calls for double-strength hot coffee to be filtered directly onto ice. Major chains such as Starbucks and Counter Culture use a version of this method.

Before even selecting a method, the first thing you have to ask yourself is, “How much do I even like coffee?”

If you are lukewarm on java, go with the cold-brew method, which reduces acidity and results in a flatter coffee with a one-dimensional chocolatey richness.

If you love coffee’s signature bitterness and multi-hued floral notes, go with Japanese style.

“I’m not into cold brewing because I like the way coffee tastes,” said Rex Williams, the coffee maven at Krupa Grocery, the new java-centric restaurant in Windsor Terrace. “The Japanese method results in a bright, citrusy, vibrant coffee.”

One man’s “vibrant” is another man’s day-old diner sludge — especially if that man is Scott Rao, author of “The Professional Barista’s Handbook: An Expert’s Guide to Preparing Espresso, Coffee, and Tea.” Rao says that hot coffee decomposes if it is poured over ice.

“I (cold brew) because the chlorogenic acid in hot coffee breaks down to form quinic and caffeic acids as the coffee cools, causing the coffee to taste sour,” Rao once told Imbibe Magazine, which debates brewing methods as passionately as Fox News treats Benghazi.

No matter your brewing method, there are other factors to consider:

* Cool beans: For his cold-brewed coffee, Saphire uses a 50-50 blend of lightly roasted Honduran beans and medium-roasted Brazilian beans. Anything darker would create more acid, the sworn enemy of cold brewers. Use darker roasts for Japanese style.

* Daily grind: Regardless of your method, grind your coffee coarsely, with a texture similar to sea salt.iced16f-19-web* Don’t get too fresh: Wait three to four days after roasting before brewing your coffee. Saphire says coffee beans need a few days of rest to release gases. Espresso coffee typically rests for seven to 11 days.* Love in bloom: In either method, pour a quarter to a third of the water over the grinds, stir and wait. This period is called “the bloom,” and it’s necessary to allow the moistened coffee to release some gases. If you look closely, you’ll see the thick coffee-water mixture bubbling.

* Save money, waste time: Regardless of the brewing method, your cost will drop from several dollars per cup to mere dimes, even if you buy the fancy beans. Coffee shops are quick to justify their costs — coffee prices are indeed on the rise, and fancy plastic cups are more expensive than paper — but any added costs associated with iced coffee are more than neutralized by the fact that much less actual coffee is in every cup.

Still, saving money by making iced coffee at home requires a big effort and lots of advanced planning. So ask yourself: Is the convenience of walking into a coffee shop and saying, “Give me an iced coffee” more important to you than money?

If so, keep spending half your paycheck on your chilled caffeine. If not, choose your weapon: cold brew or Japanese style, as adapted from the experts:

COLD BREWED ICED COFFEEiced-coffee4

Adapted from Christopher Saphire, Birch Coffee

1 pound light-medium roasted coffee beans, ground coarsely

60 ounces room-temperature water

Big bucket

Put ground coffee in a big bucket and cover with ¹ / ³ of the water. Stir the mixture, which should resemble brownie batter. Add the rest of the water and stir. Allow to sit for 24 hours, stirring occasionally.

To serve: Filter through cheesecloth or in a French press (below). Combine 1 part coffee concentrate with 2 parts water. Pour over ice.

 

 

JAPANESE HOT BREWED ICED COFFEEjap-iced

Adapted from Rex Williams, Krupa Grocery

4  1/3 ounces of coffee, ground coarsely

32 ounces boiling water

32 ounces ice

Filter

Big carafe

Put the filter cone over a large carafe filled with ice. Moisten paper filter to prime it. Add coffee and slowly pour over ¹ / ³ of the water. Pause as the coffee blooms. Slowly pour over the rest of the water. Steep for 3 minutes before releasing coffee mixture into the ice.

Alternative method: Make double-strength coffee in a French press. Pour over ice.

SIDEBAR: THE COLD FACT$ ABOUT DELI ICED COFFEE

Why is a 20-ounce iced coffee so much more expensive than the same-size cup of hot coffee at the same corner deli? Deli owners will say it costs more to make iced coffee, but they are lying. Let’s puncture their claims:

Myth: Those fancy plastic iced-coffee cups cost more!

Reality: Yes, they do cost more — about 4 to 10 cents more per cup.

Myth: Ice is soooo expensive!

Reality: It isn’t. A Manitowoc Q133W, a standard ice maker, can make 5 pounds of ice in an hour on .54 iced-2kilowatts of electricty. Do the math: With electricity now 17.7 cents per kilowatt hour and water costing $3.60 per 748 gallons, making 4 ounces of ice costs, roughly, a fraction of a cent.

Myth: It costs more to brew stronger coffee for iced coffee.

Reality: This is true. But experts have said it takes 7 ounces of ground coffee to make a gallon of regular coffee and 9 ounces to make a gallon of standard deli iced-coffee coffee. So if coffee wholesales for $5 per pound, a 20-ounce cup of regular coffee costs its maker 27 cents, while the iced-coffee coffee costs 35 cents.

But don’t forget the ice: The 20-ounce iced coffee contains 5 to 7 fewer ounces of coffee, so the iced coffee should cost 1 cent to 4 cents less than regular coffee.

Result: Even using the numbers that most favor the coffee gougers, iced coffee should cost just 9 cents more than hot coffee.

SIDEBAR: Premade iced-coffees

If homemade iced coffee recipes have your head spinning, here are some premade bottled coffees to try:

Grady’s: This New Orleans-style cold brew made in Brooklyn includes chicory, an endive cousin that mellows coffee’s bitterness for a delicious iced cup. Mix Grady’s concentrate ($15 for 32 ounces at mouth.com) with an equal amount of milk or water for iced coffee, or heat it up for a hot cup.

Birch: Birch Coffee’s four Manhattan locations sell growlers (left; $20 and $15 for refills) that make eight to 10 16-ounce cups of coffee. This robust, full-bodied coffee is drinking strength, so just add ice and sweeten and add milk to your liking.

Blue Bottle: Get transported back to school days with these cute cartons of New Orleans-style cold brew coffee with chicory, cane sugar and whole milk ($3.99 per serving). The creamy treat could qualify as dessert.

Juice Press: This dairy-free almond-milk latte ($5 for 10 ounces) is sweetened with dates, and is creamy and sweet enough that you’d never miss a Frappuccino.

Vita Coco: Drink both caffeine and electrolytes with a blend of espresso, milk and coconut water ($2.99 for 11 ounces). It also packs more potassium than a banana. The mocha version tastes like an adult chocolate milk.

— Gina Pace

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/eats/win-home-ice-coffee-article-1.1868264#ixzz37l9tTXqr



« (Previous News)
(Next News) »



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: