The forgotten coffee teas
Coffee is just about the world's most popular drink. Did you know it's the world's second most highly traded commodity, after oil? Amazing really.
What's more amazing, is that the coffee plant produces two other absolutely incredible drinks which not only taste great, but have many health benefits to boot.
These drinks are both technically teas, and we think it's incredible that no one really knows about them. Good quality versions are rare and the plant is otherwise discarded, which seems a massive waste!
1.COFFEE CHERRY TEA (CASCARA)
What is Cascara?
In Spanish, the word cascara means skin or peel and that is exactly what this tea is made from.
Did you know coffee seeds (or beans) are found inside a small piece of fruit known as a cherry (sometimes called berries).
Usually, this fruit is removed and discarded, but for centuries it has been used to make a drink popular in certain coffee-producing nations such as Bolivia.
What does Cascara look like?
Imagine dried red berry skins and you've got a pretty good idea! Once brewed, Cascara makes a beautiful red tea.
How do you make it?
Just like a normal loose leaf tea. General brewing guidelines are 5g for a large 240ml cup. The longer the brew the deeper the colour and flavour - at least 4 minutes is recommended.
Cascara is also fantastic chilled as a unique alternative to regular iced tea. A secret is to add 50% sparkling water for a very special, completely natural sweet soft drink.
What does Cascara taste like?
Cascara is very flavourful, and very different to coffee. It has a very fruity flavour, mostly of red berries with a little honey and citrus. The taste evolves as it cools too, and tastes especially sweet with the addition of sparkling water.
Is Cascara good for you?
Yes. Cascara is naturally high in anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties. It's also naturally low in caffeine for when you don't need the boost.
2.COFFEE LEAF TEA
What is Coffee Leaf Tea?
Coffee Leaf Tea is exactly what it sounds like; tea made from the leaves of the coffee plant.
It is not only delicious, but has the added benefits of enabling farmers to earn an income year-round, as coffee leaves are harvested during the off season.
What does Coffee Leaf Tea look like?
Imagine chopped up, dried green leaves. Not dissimilar in appearance to Yerba Mate. When brewed, Coffee Leaf Tea makes a delicate light, yellow-ish drink.
How do you make it?
Just like a normal cup of tea, and of course you can have it iced if you fancy.
What does Coffee Leaf Tea taste like?
Coffee Leaf Tea has a very fresh, clean flavour. It's slightly smoky (think Lapsang Souchong) a slightly citrus-y (think Earl Grey or Darjeeling).
Is Coffee Leaf Tea good for you?
Absolutely. Just like Cascara, Coffee Leaf Tea is naturally high in anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties (whilst also being naturally low in caffeine).
Coffee Leaf Tea also contains a high level of a natural polyphenol called Mangeferin, which several studies have shown to demonstrate analgesic, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective and properties as well as improve memory and inhibit cancerogenesis and growth of cancer cells.