Formerly vanilla.com | CheckoutCart
I'm amazed at how superior your vanilla is!
- Des, The Grommet
I opened the bottle of your vanilla extract last weekend to bake some cookies and the difference in taste is extraordinary." – Judy

Hibiscus Refresher

Rosa-de-Jamaica1-2015-06-09-14.19.21

As the name of this beverage implies, it is made from the deep crimson or magenta calyces (sepals) of  the roselle flower: Hibiscus sabdariffa. It is drunk either hot as a tea or cold as a beverage pretty much worldwide, though the name varies from region to region. In Mexico and Latin America it is known as Flor de Jamaica, Rosa de Jamaica or just plain Agua de Jamaica. On the other hand, in Jamaica it is known as Sorrel. In Australia, Roselle. It is equally popular in much of Asia, the Middle East and Africa. To a lesser degree it is drunk in Europe and the US, though in California it is sold as an Agua Frescas in Mexican restaurants. I first had it in Mexico and later, Guatemala and it has been one of my favorite go-to summer beverages ever since.

 

1-Dried-Hibiscus-IMG_3596

You can find the dried sepals in health food stores, Asian and Latin American stores and often even mainstream markets in the ethnic foods section.

Hibiscus does have some medicinal properties and is used in traditional medicines worldwide. Depending upon the country or region, ginger, mint, lemon juice, citrus peel, cinnamon, nutmeg and other spices are added. I like mine with a little vanilla — either a bean added with the flower petals in the preparation or extract added at the end. I sometimes add citrus peel when making it, and I often make it into a punch similar to sangria but with rum or white wine. And this is the best part about hibiscus refreshers — it welcomes all kinds of additions to the basic tart, cranberry-like base. Best of all, it’s an inexpensive beverage to prepare and nearly everyone will enjoy it!

You will need to add sweetening of some sort unless you really like mouth-puckering tart flavors. The type and amount of flavoring is up to you. Whether you use sugar, agave honey, stevia, xylitol or coconut sugar, it will accommodate all equally well. In the recipe I have used a blend of vanilla sugar and added some extract. Vanilla does seem to add a refreshing component to the flavor of this beverage.


 

Look Delicious?
Pin it for the world to see!
Patricia Rain
Follow me

Patricia Rain

is an author, educator, culinary historian, and owner of The Vanilla Company (www.vanillaqueen.com), a socially conscious, product-driven information and education site dedicated to the promotion of pure, natural vanilla, and the support of vanilla farmers worldwide. She also does culinary presentations for food professionals, cooking schools, trade shows, food fairs, and private groups, and is a regular radio and TV guest.
Patricia Rain
Follow me

Latest posts by Patricia Rain (see all)

Like it? Then please share it!
Share on FacebookShare on LinkedInPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on YummlyShare on RedditShare on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageEmail this to someone

Tags: , ,

Related Posts

Trackback from your site.

Leave a comment

Comments links could be nofollow free.

Why do our customers love Rain's Choice vanilla?

  • You get MORE FLAVOR because we use 20% more beans in our extracts than is required by law!
  • 99% of all vanilla products are imitation. Ours are 100% PURE!
  • We carefully choose all products to assure best QUALITY & FLAVOR!
  • Our farmers are paid a FAIR PRICE.
  • Our vanilla beans are SUSTAINABLY grown.
  • Everything we sell is ORGANICALLY grown.
  • Your purchase here supports our HUMANITARIAN efforts.

Thank you for supporting The Vanilla Company and our farmers! BUY HERE now.

For an update on the 2016 vanilla shortage, please see "Why is Vanilla so Expensive?"

Newsletter Signup


The Vanilla Company