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What is cold brewed coffee?

Cold brew

Cold brewed coffee or cold brew coffee refers to any coffee that is brewed without hot water. Instead, the coffee is made by immersing the grounds into room temperature or cold water and letting the coffee infuse into the water over a longer period of time than with hot water brewing.
What are cold brew’s advantages and disadvantages?

Advantages

Have you ever brewed coffee and chilled it but found the bitterness affronting when it’s cold? Have you ever been late to work just to get that morning cup of joe in?
Cold brew is a good solution to both of these problems. And its advantages don’t stop there.
Through cold brewing it is easy to make bigger amounts of coffee. Additionally if you are using fresh coffee beans and grinding them yourself you can make amazing coffee without any barista-level skills or tricks. Perfect for serving refreshing coffee drinks for a gathering or party.

Cold brew party

Disadvantages

The disadvantages are few and not that major, all things considered.
One is that you can’t really use fine-ground pre-packaged coffee, especially coffee made for espresso. If the grounds are too fine or powdery it will be extremely hard to filter out the grounds and you could end up with a sludgy mess. So make sure to buy coarsely-ground coffee or grind it coarsely yourself if you use whole beans.
Cold brewing leaves out most of the acidity that hot brewing extracts from the coffee. So if you enjoy that in your coffee you will unfortunately not get much of that in a cold brew. You might want to use a coffee that is sweet and has good body though. These will definitely shine through.
Another is that it takes a while to brew, so you have to plan ahead to make it.

How to Cold Brew

You’ll need a container that is large enough and it helps if it has a lid. Otherwise you will have to use cling film, aluminum foil, or a plate to cover the brew. This is necessary to protect it from bugs and dust.
The coffee grounds you’ll use have to be coarsely ground since the contact time with the water is very long when cold brewing. This also makes filtering the grounds out of the cold brew much easier.
The ratio you want to go for is 4 cups of water for 1 cup of coffee grounds.

Cold brew supplies

What you’ll need

  • Coarsely-ground coffee
  • Large container with a lid such as a jar
  • A strainer
  • A cheesecloth or flour sack
  • Bottled or filtered water
  • A jar to store the brew

Preparation

  1. Grind the coffee if you’re using fresh whole beans.
  2. Pour the coffee into the container and the water over it using a long-handled spoon to mix in order to properly saturate the grounds with water.
  3. Close the container with a lid or plate and let it steep for 12 to 16 hours depending on how strong you want the brew.
  4. To strain the mixture put a strainer on the jar or container you will store it in and the cheesecloth or flour sack over the strainer, then pour the brew through it. Don’t squeeze any liquid out of the grounds in the cloth.
  5. You can store this coffee for up to a week in the fridge.
  6. To serve, you can dilute the cold brew with as much water or milk as preferred according to taste.

Enjoy!

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