By Adina Steiman. Photo by: Chelsea Kyle, Food Styling by Katherine Sacks.
Thirst can come in many forms. There's the natural, God-given thirst for iced coffee that hits most human beings when even a suspicion of warmth wafts through the air. But there's also the thirst for novelty, another common human urge that Starbucks is also adept at satisfying. And while I haven't been tempted by Pumpkin Spice Lattes or (yikes) anything unicorn-related, their newest iced coffee drink, the Starbucks Toasted Coconut Cold Brew coffee, definitely makes me thirsty.
According to the website (and this reporter's own recon missions), the Starbucks Toasted Coconut Cold Brew coffee is a blend of cold-brew coffee, a sweetener "with flavors of toasted coconut and honey" (read: sugar plus "natural flavors"), and then finally "a float of coconut milk." It's equal parts invigorating and relaxing, with the coffee providing plenty of Monday-morning pep and the coconut milk and syrup giving the drink the relaxing feel of a tropical vacation.
Since every human being could probably stand to be both more alert and more relaxed, Starbucks Toasted Coconut Cold Brew coffee seems to represent the Platonic ideal of mental states, and I refused to resign myself to the fact that I could only achieve it by stopping in my local Starbucks. I simply had to figure out how to recreate it myself at home. Luckily, our Test Kitchen's ace recipe tester and developer, Kat Boytsova, was up for the task, and thanks to the drink's commendable simplicity, she was able to crack the code in under a day.
The process? Simply toast some unsweetened, shredded dried coconut in the oven, then simmer and steep it in a honey-sugar syrup to infuse the sweetener with the toasty taste of coconut. Strain out the solids, and you have your own DIY coconut syrup, which is just as good drizzled over coffee ice cream as it is stirred into cold brew. Top the drink with a drizzle of canned coconut milk or coconut creamer, and the only other thing you need to do is find a straw.
Get this recipe: Toasted Coconut Cold-Brew Iced Coffee
This story originally appeared on Epicurious.
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