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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Let's Talk About Iced Coffee!

My Galley/Kitchen
    It's been a long while since I've written about coffee making and drinking on the road. In the AM it is important for me to get a jolt to get my brain moving for the rest of the day. I'm really not much of a morning person. Believe me, ask anyone I know. They will all advise not trying to hold a conversation with me until that first magic cup begins to work. I can be a bit grumpy and, well, incoherent until then.

I have several different methods of making coffee on the road, including 120V Drip, Old Style Stove-top percolator, French Press Pot and even Instant ... though I REALLY avoid the instant as it simply tastes awful to me. Lately it has been quite hot outside and humid too. I enjoy Iced Coffee on days like that. It's very refreshing and clears my morning brain, too. Sounds like a Win-Win. Aside from buying it from a shop (Dunkin' Donuts, StarBucks, etc., etc.) I've been making my own.

The Regular "Run Of The Mill" Drop Coffee Maker
Brewing Iced Coffee is a bit different than the hot, fresh brewed, variety. First, since it will be served cold it can be stronger. Not to mention when you add ice and time it becomes diluted. Well, that is unless you're like me and drink it quickly! If I have a 120 Volt electric hookup or I know I will be running my generator for a while, I'll brew a full 12 cup pot with my drip coffeemaker. I'll let it cool (covered) then transfer it to a container to put in the fridge (Yes, I do sneak a cup at this point with ice!)  Make sure the container is going to be used for coffee exclusively as the odor and flavor of coffee tends to get picked up by the container. If you like coffee-flavored other beverages ... it's OK. An airtight container works best as the coffee will last MUCH longer that way. Hot brewed coffee has a finite "life" -- after a while it begins to oxidize and begins to taste bitter. Doctoring it up with cream/milk and sugar will help, but bad coffee is just BAD! There is a process known as "cold brewing" which allegedly will prevent oxidation and the coffee can be used for up to a week (either hot or cold). I haven't tried that ... yet. Sounds "Too Good To Be True."

Once made, seal the container and place in the fridge. For the best taste, make sure you mix your favorite things into it AFTER you pour into your cup. Leaving milk/cream in a container of coffee in the fridge will make for some nasty mixes as it will separate out. I like half & half  and a bit of sugar. Usually I use less creamer in Iced Coffee than I do in hot coffee. For me, it usually won't last the day, but as long as it's in an airtight container, you should be able to keep it overnight without too much flavor change. Once I try the "cold brewing" method I'll let you know if it lasts longer (and maybe tastes better?) Either way, a cold version of my favorite "eye opener" is a welcome addition to the beverage mix. Did I mention to use clean/clear ice for best results....


Almost any method of coffee making can be used to produce brew to be used in an Iced version. Try them all. Even the experiments taste pretty good!

Be Seeing You...Down The Road,

Rich "The Wanderman"
www.thewanderman.com