Whether you pronounce it “kaw-fee” or “kof-ee,” we can all come to the consensus that coffee’s existence is vital during the second half of the school term. Coffee addicts know there’s nothing quite like that first sip, or super-fast mindless chug, in the morning. It’s like the first breath of life, putting the drinker in the state of mind to get through the day or work through the night.
But there’s one problem: Drinking hot coffee in the summer is an unfortunate catalyst for a sticky, sweaty morning. You could wait in line at Starbucks for a $4 frozen drink you’ll have little control over, or you could make your own frosty caffeine-permeated beverage in your own home.
And another plus? No coffee maker required.
This installment of The C-Word offers three different ways to make chilled coffee: classic iced coffee, caramel iced cappuccino and chocolate cappuccino pops.
All of these frozen confections start off the same with an easy, extra-concentrated coffee mixture. Depending on how much coffee flavor the drinker prefers, regularly brewed coffee can also be used. Beware, however, that the ice and milk in these drinks may weaken the flavor of a regular cup of coffee.
For the extra-concentrated coffee base mixture you’ll need:
1 cup coffee, finely ground
8 cups hot water
2 large containers
Take a cup of your favorite coffee and grind it finer than it already is. I recommend using Wawa’s hazelnut coffee. It may cost more than your average container of Folgers or Maxwell House, but it’s worth the extra couple bucks.
Put the coffee grounds and the hot water into a large container and let it sit at room temperature for at least eight hours. Next, take a coffee filter, put it in a strainer, pour the liquid through the strainer and filter into another large container. You can store the extra-concentrated coffee in the fridge until you’re ready to use it.
To make the perfect glass of iced coffee you’ll need:
2 ½ cups extra-concentrated coffee mixture
½ cup milk
1 to 3 tsp. sugar
First, pour a cup of the coffee mixture into an ice cube tray and put it in the freezer for at least four hours. This keeps the coffee from getting watered down when the ice melts. Next, just put the rest of the coffee, the milk and as much sugar as you’d like in a glass and stir. It’s pretty easy and super effective in the morning. Another great thing about it is that it only costs about 37 cents to make!
To make the caramel iced cappuccino you’ll need:
½ cup extra-concentrated coffee mixture
¼ cup milk
1 cup ice
2 tbsp. caramel sundae syrup
extra sugar (depending on how much of a sweet tooth you have)
First mix the coffee, milk, caramel and sugar in a bowl until the caramel and sugar are completely dissolved. Trader Joe’s has caramel syrup called “Fleur de Sel Caramel Sauce” for $3.99, which I think tastes a lot better than the Smuckers or Hershey brands found in the average grocery store. Trader Joe’s brand tastes like homemade caramel, but feel free to use whichever you prefer.
Blend the coffee, milk, caramel and sugar with the ice and then pour it into a mug. Finish the drink with a little dollop of whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel. A homemade caramel iced cappuccino only costs about 82 cents.
Finally, for the chocolate cappuccino pops you’ll need:
¾ cup half and half
½ cup sweetened condensed milk
1 ½ cups extra-concentrated coffee mixture
2 tbsp. chocolate syrup
First combine the half and half and ¼ cup of the sweetened condensed milk in a bowl. Pour this mixture into popsicle molds so about a half-inch of the molds are filled. Solo cups can also work as molds just fine. Put the molds into the freezer for two hours.
While that’s chilling, mix the remaining ¼ cup sweetened condensed milk with the coffee and chocolate syrup. Take the molds out of the freezer and pour the sweetened condensed milk, coffee and chocolate syrup mixture over the frozen white tops. Next, if you’re using popsicle molds, just put the sticks in and pop them in the freezer. If you’re using Solo cups, put a layer of foil over the cup and poke a popsicle stick through so the stick doesn’t end up leaning against the side of the cup.
After at least four hours, take the pops out of the fridge and run water over the molds to easily take them out and voila, it’s ready. At most, one chocolate cappuccino pop costs about 29 cents.
So save some money and time waiting in line at Starbucks during this stressful second half of the term by making your own frozen coffee drinks at home. As usual, if you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org