Jojo and I both love iced coffee in the summer. It’s just one of those things that we prepare when we’re on vacation that reminds us again that we’re on vacation. (Breathing fresh air is another easy sign that we’re out of town, but that’s another discussion.)
It also reminds us of traveling in southeast Asia, where we often enjoyed delicious iced coffee with condensed milk. One backpacker hangout also had iced coffee with condensed milk and a banana that was blended in, which was much better than I initially imagined. To the left is a “Toddy” cold-brew device on Amazon that seems to have high ratings – AMERICAblog will get a portion of the sale.
The difference with those iced coffees as well as my traditional method (pouring hot coffee over ice) is that this method uses no heat. It takes time – a lot of time – but in theory it should be a superior product for iced coffee. Since I try to avoid the heat as much as possible in the summer, this is high on my list for August.
PS AMERICAblog reader George P. directed us to this NYT article from 2007 that talks more about New Orleans iced coffee, and provides a recipe that doesn’t require a “real” Toddy device. Though I still worry about the filtering, and whether the filter will immediately get clogged if you use a regular fine-mesh metal strainer.
New Orleans Cold Drip Coffee
Adapted from Blue Bottle Coffee company
Makes 8 cups coffee concentrate
1 pound dark roast coffee and chicory, medium ground
10 cups cold water
1. Put coffee in a nonreactive container, like a stainless-steel stockpot. Add 2 cups water, stirring gently to wet the grounds, then add remaining 8 cups water, agitating the grounds as little as possible. Cover and let steep at room temperature for 12 hours.
2. Strain coffee concentrate through a medium sieve, then again through a fine-mesh sieve.
3. To make iced coffee, fill a glass with ice, add ¼ cup coffee concentrate and 3/4 to 1 cup milk, then stir. To make café au lait, warm 3/4 to 1 cup milk in a saucepan or microwave, then pour into a mug and add ¼ cup coffee concentrate. (Concentrate will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.)