Making sorrel ginger punch
Tired of industrially produced, sugary beverages? Make your own!
On my quest for natural, homemade fruit juices and iced teas, I recently came across sorrel ginger punch. This Caribbean specialty is a traditional Jamaican Christmas drink: Colorful, delicious and healthy, its ruby red color heralds the onset of festivities.
The inexpensive ingredients are available in Costa Rican super markets, including dried sorrel, ginger, honey and water. Adding orange peel and cinnamon is optional, but makes the drink even more festive.
1 cup dried hibiscus calyces
1 tablespoon chopped, fresh ginger root
1 tablespoon honey or sugar
4 cups hot water
Sorrel is not a well-known member of the buckwheat family, but its the Jamaican word for Hibiscus sabdariffa, a plant native to the Old World tropics, which grows on the island. The parts of the plant used for culinary purposes are the fleshy calyces. More common names include Roselle, Jamaican Rose and Rosa de Jamaica in Spanish.
Jamaican sorrel tea has a tart, cranberry-like flavor. According to Wikipedia, it is rich in vitamin C, minerals and antioxidants. In folk medicine, it has been used as a diuretic, and treatment for heart disease and cancer. Fresh ginger root is known as remedy for the common cold and a stomach settler.
However, the all-natural concoction contains neither preservatives nor artificial colors or flavors. The amount of sugar is up to you and your guests. As English novelist Henry Fielding put it, “Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea.”
You may be interested
Costa Rica issues invitation to Commission on Human Rights following murder of Bribrí leaderAFP and The Tico Times - March 23, 2019
Costa Rica on Friday invited the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) to visit indigenous territories in the country’s southern…
Costa Rica falls to Guatemala, 1-0, in soccer friendlyAFP and The Tico Times - March 23, 2019
The Guatemalan national soccer team defeated its Costa Rican counterparts 1-0 on Friday night in a friendly in the Guatemalan…
Vaccinating children against measles is ‘an obligation’ for adults in Costa RicaAlejandro Zúñiga - March 23, 2019
Measles have been reintroduced in Costa Rica this year thanks to two foreign families that vacationed or reside here and…