If you’ve been drinking coffee for a long time, you’re probably familiar with roasted coffee beans. You may even be familiar with the previous step, raw green coffee beans. But, what exactly is a coffee cherry?
This guide will teach you everything you need to know about coffee cherries. Can you eat them? Should you try them? How do they taste? Continue reading to find out!
What Exactly Is A Coffee Cherry?
Coffee, unlike money, actually grows on trees! The coffee cherry is the coffee plant’s fruit. It is composed of chaff (skin), flesh, and the coffee bean, which is actually a seed. The traditional method of coffee processing involves removing the cherry skin and flesh, leaving only the coffee bean to be washed, roasted, and brewed.
Can Coffee Cherries Be Consumed?
Coffee cherries are fruits, and they can be eaten. They even have a pleasant sweet flavour. However, before you rush out to try them, there are several reasons why they aren’t a popular fruit. Coffee cherries, unlike regular cherries and other fruits, have not been grown to maximise fruit flavour. They have tough, leathery skin and very little flesh. These cherries, like an avocado with a large pit, are mostly seed with very little tasty fruit.
If you want to try a coffee cherry, you won’t be able to find it at your local grocery store. The best way to taste a coffee cherry is to go to a coffee farm — or grow your own!
Isn’t There a Coffee Cherry-Eating Animal?
Yes! You’ve probably heard of kopi luwak, a coffee made from wild cat-eating beans. Other strange coffees are consumed by bats, elephants, and other animals around the world. The theory behind these revolting coffees is that wild animals will only consume the ripest, most delicious coffee cherries. In essence, they are handpicking the best fruits!
What Exactly Is Cherry Coffee?
The coffee cherry is used to make a specialty drink. Cascara, also known as coffee cherry tea, is a beverage made from dried coffee cherry skin. The name is derived from the Spanish word cáscara, which means shell or husk. If you’ve always wanted to try a coffee cherry, this could be a good place to start. It tastes more like tea than coffee and has about the same caffeine content as a cup of black tea.
Cascara, on the other hand, is a little contentious. Some people believe that this dried fruit could harbour a lot of mould. Cascara is even largely prohibited in the European Union because it has not been thoroughly tested or studied.
The Bottom Line
So, what’s the final word? Coffee cherries are the coffee tree’s fruit, consisting of skin, flesh, and coffee beans. These small fruits are edible, but you might not enjoy eating them. If you want to try something different, try cascara, a tea made from dried coffee cherry skin!
We hope that this guide has answered all of your burning questions about the fruit that goes into your favorite morning beverage. If you’re curious, look for a coffee cherry, but we think you’d be better off sticking with roasted coffee beans.
Coffee 101 – All You Need To Know