It’s a blustery day here in London perfect weather for an afternoon cup of Hibiscus tea. I came across Hibiscus tea or Té de Jamaica, as it is known in Mexico, when I was travelling a few months ago. It’s a really refreshing, quite tart, drink made from Hibiscus flowers which can be consumed hot or cold. It is said to be high in Vitamin C and have various health benefits too. The tea is popular in Latin America,Africa and the Middle East. In Mexico you can buy bags of the magenta flowers in the local market but it is possible to obtain the flowers in health food shops over here or online via companies like the Chiswick Tea Company.
There are lots of ways of preparing the tea, everyone has their own special recipe and there are lots of videos explaining how to make it. Here at Maud HQ we like the tartness of the drink so tend not to add sugar. I suggest you make the tea or agua refrescante and add sugar to taste. Here is my version of the recipe:
Hibiscus Tea Recipe
2 litres of water
1 large cup of dried Hibiscus flowers
1 inch cube of peeled root ginger
Juice of 2 limes (if drinking cold)
Lime or orange slices to decorate (if drinking cold)
(If you have a sweet tooth add brown sugar or agave syrup to taste)
1. Put 2 litres of water in a saucepan, add the peeled ginger and bring to the boil
2. Add the cup of dried Hibiscus flowers and simmer for 20 minutes
3. Remove the Hibiscus flowers and serve hot
4. If drinking cold add the juice of two limes and allow to chill in the fridge
5. Serve over ice and decorate with a slice of lime or orange
6. It tastes great with a large splash of rum too.
Just a word of warning this jewel-coloured, magenta drink will stain so prepare and drink with caution.