You know that feeling you get when you’re in front of the ATM trying to withdraw some cash and your bank account basically responds with “Um, no”? That feeling of “Wait, where did all my money go?” Yeah, that one. I was all too familiar with it, so one day last summer I decided to sit down with my bank statement and finally answer that question. It seems I’d been spending quite a bit of money at the coffee shop—enough that I began to wonder why I didn’t just own a coffee plantation at this point. But that didn’t mean I was ready to walk away from iced coffee and cold brew—what’s summer without a cup of something cold and caffeinated? So I started making it myself. Turns out it’s surprisingly easy to make my own versions of coffee shop staples that are just as good (or even better, if I do say so myself).
I have some friends who have sworn off iced coffee in favor of cold brew. I take a more moderate stance—there’s enough love in my heart for all kinds of cold coffee drinks. This easy recipe for cold-brewed coffee is the one I keep coming back to. Plus, look at that beautiful swirl when you add milk!
The key to perfect iced coffee is all in the ice. This means: Make your ice out of coffee. Any time I brew a pot of coffee—hot or cold—and there’s some left over, I pour it into an ice cube tray. And occasionally I’ll brew some coffee just to freeze it. Yes, it takes a little bit of forethought, but it’s so worth the extra money saved! When I want an iced coffee, I use these cubes instead of regular ice so those last few drops aren’t sad, coffee-tinted water. When it’s blisteringly hot outside, I’ll pop these cubes in the blender with some milk and whip up a frozen frappé-inspired cooler. Then I can go sit on the patio with my delicious coffee drink without ever having to leave my house.
When I’m all stocked up on cubes, I have another trick for using brewed coffee: this super-simple Tiramisu Bowl. A little bit of coffee goes a long way when it’s poured over vanilla wafers and topped with fresh berries and a creamy pudding mixture—plus a little chocolate! This sophisticated dessert is perfect for summer, though my friends ooh and ahh so much when I put it on the table that I actually serve it all year long.