You know Cascara?

Cascara. What's that?

For those who have so far completely avoided Cascara, it is:

  • the dried pulp of the coffee berry
  • these are used to make a brew with an intoxicating aroma and taste, which we call Cascara tea.
  • Cascara is also used to make concentrates and then Cascara lemonade, Cascara Ieed Tea,...
  • in the Czech Republic, it started to make its way into the coffeehouse scene around 2017
  • from 2018 to 2022 it was "banned" by the EU and the ban on the sale of Cascara was suffered by many of the fans of this great product in Europe

Cascara tea prepared as an infusion from the dried skins of coffee cherries.

Why has the sale of Cascara been banned by the EU?

Specifically, on 1 January 2018, Regulation (EU) 2015/2283 came into force. Cascara met the definition of a novel food within the meaning of this regulation. It says: a novel food is a non-traditional European food. One that was not commonly consumed in the EU before 15 May 1997 (which is the date the previous novel food regulation - Regulation (EC) No 258/1997 - came into force).

These novel foods must then be authorised for the European market. To assess the safety of the foreign food for European consumers. To assess and document everything and submit everything to the European Commission and EFSA for assessment. This, as we know, is a long term undertaking. Heureka! This year he has reached his goal!

Approved! Now, where to buy Cascara?

Who couldn't wait to get their hands on this goodie like I did, sending the Ministry of Agriculture questions like, "When will Cascara be allowed? When will it be ready? ..already?", he could have gotten an answer. Cascara has gone to the EC for approval, but the implementing regulation has not yet come into force. When we publish the Official Journal of the EU 20 days after that.

And you know what, dear Cascaromillions? On 14.1.2022, that awaited Bulletin with the Regulation of 13.1.2022 on the authorisation of Cascara will be published! Yay! Don't you believe it? Here it is in black and white.

The beginning of February is thus connected with the resumption of Cascara deliveries to the Czech market and cafes. We at Lázeňská kává have booked the most delicious Cascara for you right from the producers. So go on, shop, taste and enjoy!

Cascara: tea preparation

I mentioned in the introduction that it's not about coffee or tea and now I want to teach you how to make tea? To keep the terms correct, it's about the infusion or infusion of Cascara. Anyway, we also call rosehip infusions rosehip tea in our area, right? Well, it's similar with Cascara, so I will continue to call this infusion tea.

Although it is the dried part of the fruit of the coffee tree it is not coffee. It is, as we all know, from the seeds or coffee beans. It is not even an official tea because it is the fruit not the leaves of the tea plant. Nor is its taste uncategorizable. Naturally sweet, slightly reminiscent of that particular rosehip tea. Aroma ofherbs, fruits, spices.

Recipe for Cascara tea

Sometimes you want a stronger tea and sometimes a weaker one, depending on your taste (maybe even your mood?). I recommend to start with the golden mean and in the ratio of 3-6g per 100 ml, brew Cascara with hot water about 97°C. Steep for about 10 minutes and then pour through a strainer into a cup.

Cascara Fizz, Ice Cascara drink and kombucha from Cascara

You can use the stronger tea, or rather the already such Cascara concentrate in thousands of ways! Among my favourite tried and tested variations is Cascara Fizz or Cascara Lemonade.

  • A few ice cubes in the glass
  • a dash of Cascara concentrate
  • A few drops of Simple Syrup (dissolved sugar)
  • top with soda water

Another and even more refreshing version of Cascara Fizz is Cold Brew Cascra Fizz. The procedure is similar only you still count the decibels of great Cold Brew in the recipe. Don't know how to make it?

My beloved iced tea from Cascara is a perfectly simple affair. You make a classic Cascara tea and let it cool. I throw three ice cubes into a shaker (or jar), chill the Cascara, drizzle with Simple Syrup and add a few lime wedges. Shake, don't stir, pour and enjoy. Preferably on the balcony.

My final tip (not a complete list of ideas for what to make with Cascara) is dedicated to the popular kombucha. That is, the fermented drink without which a real hipsta cafe would not open.

If it's from a coffee tree, does Cascara have caffeine?

This deduction is correct. Cascara, like a proper coffee tree fruit, also contains a little caffeine. The amount is best thought of in the context of coffee. As I'm sure you've read in our article about caffeine in your daily coffee consumption , such an espresso has about 60 mg of caffeine. A cup of filter coffee about 100 mg of caffeine and a cup of Cascara about 22 mg of caffeine.

Maybe Cascara will be your chance for an early evening cup of something good, slightly stimulating. But also something that will let you sleep well at night. It will also be a good tool for biohackers who prefer the style of micro-dosing caffeine.

More information about Cascara?

Still continuing to read? The topic has obviously intrigued you, and I'm very happy about that. So, what else can I tell you about Cascara? For example, its name comes from the Spanish: Cascara in Spanish means peel or shell.

Drinking Cascara tea is much more traditional than drinking coffee! Thus, as the EU has confirmed for 4 years by banning it, it is not traditional in our country. However, in places like Yemen they have been drinking Cascara perhaps since their first coffee tree was grown. Cascara tea there is called Gishrand is served with a little cinnamon and ginger.

The Czechs only got a taste for Cascara with the advent of the third coffee wave. That is, the period that led to the development of the coffee industry with a sense of quality of the product, such as our choice coffee, and conscious consumption (ecologically, sustainably, considerately).

Just for the record, for several thousand years, Ethiopians have been drinking beverages made not only from roasted coffee beans or dried coffee cherry husks. Amertassa, for example , is a concoction made from coffee tree twigs or leaves dried in the air. And Kati is made from roasted coffee leaves.

Cascara production, uses and properties

When processing the coffee fruit , farmers on the plantation also separate the skin from the cherry. This process of fragmenting the coffee cherry is done either by the wet or dry method of coffee processing. The wet method is gentler on the cherries and leaves much more flavour, aroma and beneficial substances in the skin. The coffee is then dried.

If the peel is not processed for food purposes it is used as an excellent fertiliser. It is very important for its quality that it is grown organically, preferably on small plantations without the use of pesticides and chemical fertilisers.

By drinking Cascara you also strengthen your immune system. It helps in recovery, is anti-inflammatory, stimulating and stress-relieving. It also contains iron (reportedly 3 times more than spinach) and potassium (twice as much as a banana), and is full of minerals and antioxidants. I just don't see any reason not to make a cup of Cascara right away!