When warmer temperatures come, so does a desire for cold drinks. You may be one of those people who looks forward to the day that it is “appropriate” to drink cold brew. Or you may be like others who prefer it over hot brewed coffee all year round. Many people prefer cold brew over hot brewed coffee because of the fact that it is less acidic (67% less acid, according to Toddy). Either way, making cold brew with the Toddy Coffee Maker is incredibly easy!
Every coffee fanatic has a favorite way of brewing iced coffee, and this one is mine. Also, this method is less than half of what the Toddy is capable of brewing. I like this amount, because I spend most of my time drinking hot brewed coffee.
What You Will Need:
- Toddy Cold Brew Coffee Maker (brewing container with handle, decanter with lid, rubber stopper, and filter)
- Fresh Coffee (170 grams)
- Scale (optional)
- Coffee Grinder
- Purified Water (825 ml)
Step 1: Prepare Toddy Cold Brew Coffee Maker. Before anything else, plug the hole in the bottom of the brewing container (from the outside) with the rubber stopper. Do not plug the hole from the inside, or you won’t be able to drain your cold brew. Then, wet the filter, and put it inside the brewing container. It fits tightly in the bottom of the brewing container.
The filters that Toddy makes are particularly thick and are reusable, up to 10 times, but no longer than 3 months. Or, if you don’t like that idea, they also make a single-use paper filter bags, which helps eliminate clogging and makes a much quicker and easier cleanup.
Step 2: Weigh and Grind Coffee. As mentioned above, I usually only make a half batch at home. However, at work I brew 5 gallonsat a time. So, honestly, as long as you are consistent with your ratio of coffee to water, it is going to go well.
This method uses the Toddy recommended brew ratio, which is about a 1:4.87 coffee-to-water ratio. So, for a half batch, weigh out a total of 170 grams, or 6 oz, of coffee. You are going to pour the ground coffee into the brewing container at two different times, so it is helpful to divide it in half again, having two bowls (or some other containers) of 85 grams of coffee. It is helpful, but not mandatory. You can obviously divide later, or simply guesstimate.
Then, with regard to grinding your coffee, use a coarse grind. The grind size should be about the same as what you would do for a French Press. You can obviously experiment and see what you like better, but a good place to start is by using a grind size of about 30 on a Baratza Encore. If you do not have a grinder that is able to grind at various sizes, have your local coffee shop grind them, being sure to take them directly home and begin the brewing process.
Step 3: Start the Brewing Process—First Pour and First Half of Coffee. First of all, place the Toddy brewing container on your scale, if you have one. Tare it to zero, and then pour 125 ml (1ml = 1g; or approximately 1/2 cup) of water into the container.
Then, pour the first bowl of 85 grams of coarse ground coffee (half of the total amount) into the water that is in the brewing container.
Step 4: Continue the Brewing Process—Second Pour and Second Half of Coffee. Now, after adding the first half of the ground coffee, slowly pour 350 ml (or 1 1/2 cups) of water over the grounds in a clockwise fashion, seeking to saturate all of the grounds.
Then, pour the second bowl of 85 grams of coarse ground coffee (the remaining half) into the sludge. Try to evenly disperse the grounds, so that they don’t all pile up in the middle.
Step 5. Wait and Then Continue Brewing Process—Third Pour. Now that all of the coffee (170 grams) is in the brewing container, wait 5 minutes before the third pour.
After 5 minutes, pour the remaining 350 ml (or 1 1/2 cups) of water over the sludge in a clockwise fashion, again, seeking to saturate all of the grounds. If there are some grounds that are not wet, simply pat them into the sludge with the back of a spoon. Stirring the sludge can result in a clogged filter.
Step 6: Wait, Wait, Wait. When the fun part of beginning the brewing process is over, the hard part kicks in, where you have to wait 12-24 hours to let the mixture continue brewing, so that all of that tasty goodness is extracted from the coarsely ground coffee. Personally, I place a plate on top of the brewing container so that nothing falls into the sludge as it sits, like dust or bugs.
To put this into perspective, or simply to offer a good idea: it takes a little over 11 hours to watch all three of the Lord of the Rings movies, and about 20 hours to watch all three of the Hobbit movies prior to the Lord of the Rings movies.
Step 7: Decant Cold Brew. After waiting 12-24 hours, whether sleeping or watching a Hobbit/Lord of the Rings marathon, it is now time to decant that liquid gold! This can be done alone, but it is helpful to have someone else, if possible, especially if you are doing a large batch. Simply hold the brewing container over the decanter (without the lid, duh), and unplug the rubber stopper. Then, set the brewing container on the decanter until it has finished draining.
The decanting process does not take very long. However, if it does not begin immediately, or doesn’t start at all, it is likely that your grind is too fine. As Toddy recommends, if this is the case, simply take a butter knife and insert it into the sludge and gently scrape the filter. If it is so fine that it doesn’t ever come through, you will likely have to drain the sludge through a tea towel.
Step 8: Clean and Enjoy! I know that it may be difficult, but since the Toddy Coffee Maker is made of plastic, it is important to clean immediately after decanting. Simply dump the grounds into your compost or garbage bin. Also, pro tip, use a chopstick, pushing through the bottom of the container, to dislodge the filter. Be sure to rinse both the filter and the plastic brewing container. Put the filter in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 10 uses, or 3 months.
Now, you have fresh cold brew! Do be aware that this is a concentrate, so you will want to dilute it a bit. Toddy recommends beginning with a 1 part coffee to 3 parts water, milk, or soy. That said, you may like it stronger, so experiment with it. Also, there are tons and tons of recipes out their for cold brew. Toddy actually has a recipe book themselves.
Other Brewing Options:
If you want more cold brew than this method yields (about 18 fluid ounces of concentrate), you can double the recipe, resulting in 340 grams, or 12 oz, of coffee to 1650 ml of water. And if you want as much cold brew as the Toddy Coffee Maker is capable of brewing, you can brew an entire pound of coffee, which takes about 2200 ml of water. If you choose to do this, know that it will be quite full and therefore more challenging to maneuver.