Cascara is proof that coffee fruit skin, which often ends up as waste, can be utilized for something useful.
In the post-harvest process of coffee, stripping the skin is done using a machine that can also be referred to as a pulper.
Water should always be applied when peeling to soften the skin so that it can be easily detached from the coffee fruit. In general, most leather will end up as unused waste.
However, there are also many plant skins that can be used for certain things, such as health and beauty.
Benefits of Coffee Fruit Skin
Before discussing how to make cascara, we must first understand the other benefits of coffee fruit skin.
This aims to avoid creating a lot of coffee skin waste. In addition, farmers can also utilize all parts of their coffee harvest for commercial or personal use.
Turned into Compost
Coffee fruit skins can be reprocessed to be used as mixed fertilizer. Before making it, prepare other ingredients, such as sugar, manure, water, dolomite, and decomposer.
The method is to put the coffee fruit skins into the compost bin. All materials should be stacked in layers until they reach at least 75 cm in height.
Make sure to turn it every two weeks. If it is too dry, water it. Later, the compost can only be used after 2-3 months.
The reason coffee skin can be used as fodder is because of the content in it. Coffee fruit skins at least contain nutrients needed by livestock, namely crude protein, potassium, phosphorus, and crude fiber.
What is Cascara?
In addition to agricultural and livestock needs, coffee fruit skin can be processed into something good for human consumption. The preparation is cascara.
In Spanish, cascara means to peel. Because, indeed, cascara comes from the process of stripping the skin so it can also be interpreted as the dried skin of the coffee cherry.
The making of cascara is inseparable from the process of drying in the sun. Therefore, these skins will physically look like dried raisins or nut shells.
Cascara is a healthy herbal tea drink that is high in antioxidants. The steeping result of this cascara produces a color like tea in general, which is yellowish brown.
However, when it comes to flavor, cascara produces a fruit-like taste. Some say it even smells like cinnamon, oranges, or even apples.
Cascara is apparently quite common in the Yemen and Ethiopia region. Farmers there have been drying coffee skins and brewing them for centuries.
There, they enjoy cascara by adding healthy spices, such as ginger, cinnamon, or even nutmeg. The drink continued to spread to South America.
In Indonesia, cascara has also become one of the menus that adorn cafes. This drink is suitable for those who don’t like the taste of coffee, but still want to get the benefits of caffeine.
Cascara itself does not have too much caffeine. This is as Square Mile Coffee Roasters Co-Founder Anette Moldvaer explains. In his article on the Square Mile Blog titled “Cascara and Caffeine”, he explains that he sent cascara to a laboratory in Germany.
Anette found that cascara only contained about 111.4 milligrams per liter at its longest brewing. This is much lower than the content of brewed coffee, which can reach 400 to 800 milligrams per liter.
How to Make Cascara, Processed from Coffee Fruit Peels
So, how do you make this cascara into a healthy tea? It is quite easy to make because it only requires hot water. However, keep in mind that cascara is the cleaned and dried coffee skin. Since you want to make it as a consumable, make sure that what you have at home is not just any coffee skin that is used without any cleaning process.
- Soak a few tablespoons of cascara in hot water
- Wait about 5 minutes for the color of the water to change.
- Then, strain the skin so that the drink can be enjoyed easily
- Cascara tea is ready to be enjoyed. If you want to drink cascara tea cold, add ice cubes at the end.
Cascara already has a sweet flavor. However, you can still add it with other sweet ingredients like honey or sugar.
That is the explanation of one of the processed coffee fruit skins that often become waste. After this, the coffee fruit skin can be put to good use for livestock, agriculture, and health purposes.
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