Saturday, June 1, 2013

Currents :: Iced Coffee and Homemade Creamer

It's Summertime!

When summer rolls around, I start thinking of things like watermelon, chilled in a river. Or my mom's pasta salad. Or hamburgers sizzling on a charcoal grill. All key ingredients to a perfect summer cookout. Or just a regular summer day. I'm not picky.

This summer, I've added something new to my "It wouldn't be summer without..." list. Well, really, it's now on my "I need this every afternoon..." list.

Iced coffee ... complete with homemade creamer.

My sweet friend, Carla, shared her recipes and tips with me as we sat on a swing and watched our boys race around a playground. I couldn't have known when I sat there, typing her directions into the Notes section of my iPhone that I was already sliding down a slippery slope...

Because, as Carla says, this stuff will make you happy!

I'm hardly a food purist. I've consumed more than my fair share of random chemical goodness in my time. Even now, if someone showed up with a box of Sociables and a can of squeeze cheese...well, I wouldn't turn my nose up at them.

But, I do try to at least pay attention and, when possible, avoid random chemicals and craziness in my food. Especially food that I consume on a regular basis.

So when Carla told me that she'd modified The Pioneer Woman's iced coffee recipe AND that she made her own creamer to go with it...well...I was intrigued.

And by intrigued, I mean I went straight home and started whipping up my own batch.

Guess what...Carla was right! This stuff will put a smile on your face and it's way cheaper than swinging through the Starbucks drive thru.

Try it. And then get back here and tell me how much you loved it!

If you're local, come on by the house. I'll share.
I will.
I promise!

Iced Coffee
If you want to make a ginormous batch, you need to go to The Pioneer Woman's site because she's got it all figured out. (And, her idea of putting sweetened condensed milk in her iced coffee...sweet mercy!)

However, if you'd like to make a little less, just find an ancient plastic half-gallon pitcher. You know, the kind you have tucked in the back of a cabinet somewhere. Put a cup of ground coffee in it and fill it up with water. Then let it sit on your counter overnight. Twenty-four hours. A day or two. Whatever. It's not an exact science. Then strain out the coffee grounds through some cheesecloth and put the remaining coffee in the fridge until chilled. It will keep for at least a week. Probably longer, but I wouldn't know because that's as long as mine has made it.

Now, when you want some, just pour it over ice. Voila! Iced coffee yumminess!

Of course, if you want that iced coffee to put a smile on your face, you'll need to add some creamer.

Here's Carla's version:

Homemade Creamer

1 cup of powdered milk
1 Tbs. of vanilla
1/2 cup - 3/4 cup of boiling water
1/2 cup of sweetener (you pick your sweetener of choice here and you can always adjust it by adding more or less to your personal taste - I've used sugar and coconut palm sugar. Both worked great. Carla uses Truvia. I'm planning to experiment with honey and maple syrup)
Blend it up.
Then blend in 2 cups of milk (skim, half & half, heavy cream)

This will make about 32 ounces. Pop it in your fridge and enjoy in your coffee. It's also A.MAZ.ING  over fresh strawberries or peaches.

I'll be smiling!

Thanks to Carla for sharing this with me and allowing me to share it here on Out of the Boat!