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Thursday, July 8, 2010

Cold-Brewed Coffee: Ethical Heaven

Who wants to drink hot coffee in humid, sticky weather? Maybe some, but not me. On steamy days, I crave a nice big glass of iced coffee. Rather than spend $2 to $3 daily to feed my addiction, we've started cold brewing our own. Pour the silky liquid of deliciousness in a glass of ice; add a splash of cream; and oh-my-goodness: sipping heaven on my front porch! Try it. :)

1. Coarsely grind coffee beans.
2. Use ratio of 1 cup coffee grounds: 4.5 cups water.
3. Combine and stir. 
4. Leave sit 12 hours or overnight at room temperature.

5. Strain using a colander lined with paper towel or a regular coffee filter.
Cold-brewed coffee has been called iced crack by some. Unless you want crazy jitters all day, be sure to fill your glass with ice to help dilute the coffee a bit. General rule of thumb is equal portions of cold-brewed coffee to water (ice in most cases).

Why choose cold-brewed coffee?
  • You get your caffeine fix in the summer without staining your clothes with sweat.
  • Cold-brewed coffee is less acidic than hot coffee, so it's easier on your stomach.
  • It keeps for up to two weeks in the fridge.
  • It freezes well too. Lots of people freeze leftovers into ice-cube trays for more coffee goodness added to their cold coffee drinks.
We typically use Kickapoo Coffee because we are fortunate enough to have that coffee offered as a CSA through Harmony Valley Farm. It's delicious, organic, and most importantly, fair trade. When and if we run out of our coffee for the week, our priority in purchasing is to buy fair trade. Why you might ask?

A few reasons include:
1. Smaller farmers are generally better stewards of the land.
2. Buying fair trade ensures that fair wages are being paid to people who harvest and grow your drink/food.
3. Fair trade requires sustainable agriculture methods, so generally, fair trade products are better for the environment.
Click here and here to learn more.  And look for these symbols when purchasing coffee!

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