Cascara (Dried Coffee Cherry) El Salvador Finca Kilimanjaro
This is not roasted coffee, this is cascara. Meaning "husk" in Spanish, cascara is the dried fruit of the coffee plant. A coffee bean is really the seed of a coffee berry, colloquially known as a cherry. Traditionally, the fruit was simply treated as a byproduct of the seed extraction process. Leftover fruit is typically composted and returned to the fields as fertilizer. It was discovered that, if handled carefully the remaining dried coffee fruit taste great on its own and could be steeped in water to make a delicious tisane, or infusion.
This cascara was produced in El Salvador by our longtime partner Aida Batlle, on her farm Kilimanjaro, which is located in the Santa Ana growing region. It is the dried fruit of Bourbon variety plants and is exceptionally sweet. There are a number of ways to brew cascara, but we have enjoyed variations of the recipe below, which can be adjusted according to taste. We have found that due to the large size of the fruit itself, this cascara benefits from a longer steep time than other lots we have tasted.
1-2 Tablespoons cascara
8-12 ounces hot water (about 200° F)
Steep for at least 5 minutes