Flower Power

Hibiscus is not only a beautiful flower to look at, but also a very useful one. It has numerous medicinal values, and it has been used for centuries by Indians, Mexicans , Egyptians , Malaysians, Chinese, Africans … practically by the whole world, for its therapeutic properties.
When incorporated into the diet, the hibiscus tea emits high levels of antioxidants, such as flavonoids, which help our bodies fight free radicals, which can cause cell damage and disease.
This miracle flower is rich in vitamin C, and has been widely used as an herbal method of controlling high blood pressure, controlling bad cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease. It is also used to control tempering fevers, alleviating digestive problems, as well as improving circulatory disorders. And the best part is its caffeine free and herbal. You can read more about its health benefits here and here and here . Infact this is one of the botanicals we export from Ghana, for which we even won the national export award last year. We mainly export this product to Belgium and UK, where it finds its way into supermarkets and retail outlets.

Flower Power

There are many ways you can have it, hot or cold, sweet or tangy. U can compare the flavour to that of cranberries. This deep crimson red drink can entice just about anyone. When having it hot make your own tea bag with a muslin cloth. Put a few slices of ginger, a few cloves and a handful of hibiscus leaves. Pour over boiling water, little honey to sweeten and let the flavours infuse for a couple of minutes. 2 cups of tea a day can reduce hypertension and have a calming effect. So drink away to a healthier life.

Flower Power

And then theres my favourite way … The Iced Tea ! Famous all over Mexico n Jamaica, this is probably the best way you can consume this drink.

Flower Power

There is really no recipe for this, just boil a cup of leaves with 2 cups of water and sugar to your taste. Strain and chill. When ready to serve, add some more chilled water as the juice would be a bit concentrated. Bring it to life with some lime juice and pour over ice. Perfect for margaritas , sorbets, ice creams and jellies. This one i promise you will be a regular in your household once you try it.

Flower Power
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Comment :

noreply@blogger.com (Mochachocolata Rita)

i love iced tea…but sick and tired of hk’s iced lemon tea.

this is perfect, i’ll give it a try ๐Ÿ™‚

noreply@blogger.com (Anonymous)

Photo shows petals but the recipe says leaves. Can anyone tell me which one to follow

-Kate

noreply@blogger.com (Shantanu)

Goodness! I never knew people ate hibiscus. We have had trees in our garden for ages and only used them as offerings for the Gods! ๐Ÿ™‚

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

Aran , thank you very much. its nice to have to drop by.

Maybahay , ya me too , its only recently i learnt about its benefits.

Stephan …. haha …really ! i am quite happy to hear that . Have sweet dreams ๐Ÿ™‚

Helene , it sure does !

Rita …hey i love the Tung Ling Cha !!!! i can never get sick of it, but this is a get alternative nevertheless.

Kate u get only the hibiscus petal , dried that too. U ‘ll have to use those.

Shantanu, ..haha 1 grew up around them too , had my own plant and when i was little i used to pluck a flower everyday and stick it in my hair. Back then we called it Shoe flower , dunno where it came from but thats how i remember it. Later i new its hibiscus and discovered of all the many colours its available in. And only recently its gr8 health benefits.

noreply@blogger.com (Katy)

gorgeous! the color is just wonederful — i love pretty much any herbal tea, so i bet i would love this too!

noreply@blogger.com (JennDZ - The Leftover Queen)

GORGEOUS PHOTOS! Wow, they sort of blow you away! ๐Ÿ™‚

I love hibiscus tea – so yummy!

noreply@blogger.com (eliza)

looks very red and pretty! as I read hibiscus’ properties, they remind me of cranberries’ properties.

noreply@blogger.com (Susan from Food Blogga)

I’ve only had hot hibiscus tea, but I’d love to try a few sips of your brilliantly colored chilled tea.

noreply@blogger.com (Oh for the love of food!)

What delicious pics these are, Kate! and I’ve never seen anyone look SO sexy munching on chocolate, what with fly-away curls and all!

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

Katy , i bet too !

Jenn , thanks ๐Ÿ˜€

Eliza, they almost are the same , just like any deep red coloured fruit or vegetable.

Susan , the iced tea is to die for

Oh for the love of food , haha thanks … its the chocolate thats sexy …not me …hahaha !!!

noreply@blogger.com (Swati: Sugarcraft India)

I really like the rich red colour..The snaps of the dried flower are incredible..you do magic with camera !!
I really was unaware of the hibiscus tea ..wow!! will try to procure it now!!

noreply@blogger.com (Christine)

I am going to have to check around and see if I can get hibiscus otherwise I am going to have to order it online. I found a recipe for a hibiscus martini that I want to try!

noreply@blogger.com (Mike of Mike's Table)

I never would have thought of this but it sounds like it would be a delightful treat and a great way to add a touch of elegance to many a dish!

noreply@blogger.com (maybelles mom)

lovely as always. You had commented about my rhubarb cupcakes and I wanted to get back to you about that. I just salt dried some rhubarb. http://thehistoricalchef.blogspot.com/2008/03/dried-rhubarb.html
(Yes, I am obsessed.) I did this, b/c my husband and I have decided to recreate historic meals, and the chinese apparently trader rhubarb (mostly the medicinal kind) and others in the subcontinent dried it for its sourness. I used them in chicken, preserved lemon, and swiss chard stem pot pies. http://feedingmaybelle.blogspot.com/2008/03/pot-pie-choose-your-own-mystery-party.html
I have just started this process, but if you wanted some, I would be happy to mail you some, if Ghanaian customs allows such things.

noreply@blogger.com (Jessy and her dog Winnie)

That sounds really refreshing!

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

Swati , the colour is really mesmerizing. I fell in love with it instantly. Good luck with finding some.

Christine ….thats sounds ice. My hubby would love that !

Mike , i’m sure, i already discovered so many fancy ways to use this tea , i cant wait to entertain some friends now ๐Ÿ™‚

maybelles oh gr8 ….thnx for all those links , its easier to look it up now.

Jessy …it is !!!

noreply@blogger.com (daphne)

Love the colour of this drink and the health benefits. I learned something new today =)

noreply@blogger.com (anya)

Kate, I passed something on to you (and it’s NOT a meme)! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Please, check my blog for more details.

noreply@blogger.com (Pooja)

wow,
what a lovely blog you have, My first time visit here , and I am amazed to see these posts with lovely pics.
Never came across Hibiscus. I am searching some now to try that lovely drink on it.
thanks kajal for sharing this informative post with us.

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

daphne … nice to know u did ๐Ÿ™‚

anya …thanks for the award ๐Ÿ™‚

pooja …thank you so much ๐Ÿ™‚ makes me happy every time i hear how readers like my blog. Hope to see u around.

noreply@blogger.com (ces)

love the vivid colors of crimson! and such wonderful wonderful photography kate! how have you been? moi, as you may have known, been so tied up with the move and all…still! but loving it, so i haven’t the time yet to go full blogging, cooking and hopping:)

noreply@blogger.com (Aamena)

i didnt know its called hisbiscus.. dad gets loads of this whenever he travels to the east.. its fantastic really, seeing it here i am already thinking of posting it on my blog! haha.. and hey we call it ‘karkade’ thats the name dad calls it by, it must arabic or something for it…

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

ces ..i’ve been gr8 ,actually suffering a bit from bit of a bloggers blog , cant think of anything nice to make and post !
…haha take your time , u really need to be at piece of mind to bring out gr8 posts !

Aisha …ya i think that is a Egyptian name for it … so i guess yes it is Arabic. it is traditionally consumed hot there.

noreply@blogger.com (Khun Ying)

Hi Kate,

Very nice recipe blog. I just added it to this recipe directory.

Your readers and fans can vote for you by giving you a star. See you around! ๐Ÿ™‚

noreply@blogger.com (The Culinary Chase)

Kate, thanks for mentioning the medicinal properties of this beautiful flower! Your photo’s are beautiful! Cheers!

noreply@blogger.com (Aaron Kagan)

I’ve noticed a number of posts by people wondering if you can use fresh flowers. The answer? Absolutely!

Hibiscus grow rampantly in many warm climates, like my home in Florida, but most are ignorant to their uses. Many people will buy hibiscus tea when they’ve got perfectly good stuff growing in their own backyard.

Simply pour near-boiling water over a fresh blossom and strain. I would assume the beneficial effects are only stronger – why would it be any better to use less fresh flowers? Just don’t take from any bush that’s been treated with pesticides. As far as I know, there are no poisonous look-a-likes.

One interesting thing: when I used a red blossom, I got a purple tea:

http://teaandfood.blogspot.com/2007/11/hibiscus-tea.html

-Aaron kagan
http://www.teaandfood.blogspot.com

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

Khun Ying, thanks
i’ve put up the widget ๐Ÿ™‚

Heather, u are most welcome.

Aaron, i wasn’t sure, as frankly even the dried variety is fairly new to me, inspite of having grown up around these flowers. Thanks for your tips, i guess everyone did learn a lot from this post.

noreply@blogger.com (SteamyKitchen)

hey – i LOOVE your new self portrait!!

noreply@blogger.com (Anonymous)

Agua de Jamaica! My mom keeps a pitcher of it in her fridge all the time! When we were little she used to make popsicles out of extra sweet agua de jamaica, they are so good!

noreply@blogger.com (Cinnamonda)

Lovely pictures, as usual :), Kajal!
The iced tea looks so delicious and refreshing. It makes me think of warm summer evenings! (And we got a really, really late winter here. We still have snow at the moment… )

Greetings,
Tiina

noreply@blogger.com (Coffee & Vanilla)

Kate,
I recently discovered that Caribbean sorrel and hibiscus are the same thing… my better half was always telling me about it.. I’ve been drinking hibiscus tea all my life and we did not know that we were talking about the same thing until yesterday when I found Jamaican dried sorrel in the supermarket…. ๐Ÿ™‚
I will post about it later! Beautiful pictures of mango and coconut cakes!
Have a nice day, Margot

noreply@blogger.com (Journey_of_Life)

Hi. I really wanted to exchange links! My website is http://www.mychocolateheaven.blogspot.com I hope you like my site as much as I do yours! haha. I have already added your website to mine and I hope you can return the favor. If you do get a chance, please inform me at my website. Thanks!!!

noreply@blogger.com (Kate / Kajal)

Jaden …. :DD mm goi sai !

… popsicles are really good with hibiscus … my housemaid makes them and sells them to kids outside the school , in her free time.

tiina … i really hope u guys get the summer quick !

Margot, haha thats funny …atleast now u know. thnx

journey of life … thanks for adding me on. i will get back to u ๐Ÿ™‚

This is called ZOBO in northern Nigeria. Its a popular drink I have been giving my husband for a long time. I/m glad the world knows about our ZOBO

jasmine cams Intimately, the post is in reality the freshest topic on this registry related issue. I concur with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your forthcoming updates. Saying thanks will not just be enough, for the wonderful clarity in your writing.

What a perfect color. I just love to look at it !

This is very good, thanks for putting this up. I read your blog all the time and find your site highly informative and useful. Keep the posts coming! ๐Ÿ™‚

This is absolutely nice shots. I love the photography. Mouth-watering juices.

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