the heat is off: bring on the cold brrrew
cold brew coffee is iced coffee's hipper sibling. cool and on the ready, a few steps ahead, charmingly upbeat without an acerbic bite, and no sad meltdown.
it can be as geared up as you'd like: chemex, french press, or made in a filtron, which is designed specifically for cold brew. if it works for cold brew coffee, it works for cold brew cacao.
then there's lo-fi styled, with supplies you might have on hand.
the basic idea: like coffee beans, it starts with the roast. not all cacao beans make good cold brew. we lean toward beans that smell great, have a strong chocolate backbone, and based on excellent fermentation tending at the farm, less astringency/acid. we tweak our roast specifically for cold brew, and let the beans sit 24 hours to cool completely before winnowing. we opt for a clean winnow, with less husk. cocoa husk "tea" is not our goal: it's a full, cacao flavor we're going for.
unlike warm brew (where hot water is poured over/through or forced through the ground beans) cold brew works on patient submersion. note the word patient. if you want cold brew now, you need to make it 4-24 hours before. submersion allows the flavors to steep + settle, and because cool or room temp water is used, the outcome is less acidity, more flavor.
treat cold brew cacao like whole coffee beans: they require a grind. a finer grind works best.
method a: submerse wait strain. place in a jar, pitcher, pot, chemex, french press. add water, set aside at room temp or in fridge. 12 -24 hours works best, then strain using a strainer, coffee filter, or press if using a press pot.
method b: submerse + wait. place ground cold brew cacao in a filter bag (the same kind used for making nut milks works great). place bag in a jar or pitcher, add water, wait, remove bag.
keep covered in fridge for up to two weeks.
grounds make good garden mulch or can go into the compost. but remember: cacao (like chocolate) is not dog-friendly