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When it comes to summer desserts, there are few things in my book that beat a cool, creamy affogato. Take a few hearty scoops of good vanilla ice cream, add a generous pour of strong espresso, and the melting swirls of caffeinated decadence that result are the key to my heart.

Traditionally, affogato is made with hot espresso. But on particularly hot and humid summer days, I like serving mine with very strong cold brew coffee instead. Cold brew coffee is made simply by soaking coffee grounds in cold water for an extended amount of time, and letting time rather than heat draw out the coffee flavor. I find it yields a smoother, sweeter coffee with less acidity and less bitterness, which makes it both delicious on its own and perfect for dessert. Most importantly, though, it avoids going near anything boiling, and lets you skip straight to cooling off.

To make a cold brew affogato yourself, here’s what you need, and how to do it:

dessert recipe, affogato

Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
1 cup coffee grounds (coarsely ground is best, though any will work)
1 cup water
a fine mesh sieve or pour-over coffee maker
a coffee filter

dessert recipe, affogato

01. Combine the coffee and water in a large jar or container and give it a good stir until all the grounds are moistened. Let sit, covered, for 24 hours.

dessert recipe, affogato

02. Line a sieve or pour over coffeepot with a coffee filter. Any filter will work, but a thinner one is best. Pour the coffee mixture slowly into the filter and let the coffee drain through. If grounds remain in the container, just leave them.

dessert recipe, affogato

03. Discard grounds, and you’re done! This recipe yields about 1/2 cup of very strong coffee.

Note: For regular cold brew coffee, increase the water to a 1:2 ratio (for every 1 cup of coffee grounds, use 2 cups water). This is for a very strong concentrate to use over ice cream, and I was buzzing after just one!

Cold Brew Affogato
4 to 6 scoops good vanilla ice cream
1/4 to 1/3 cup cold brew coffee concentrate, using the recipe above

01. Scoop vanilla ice cream into two individual cups.

02. Pour a generous amount of cold brew over each, at least a few tablespoons, and serve immediately.