This recipe is taken from the fantastic book Mexican Food Made Easy by Thomasina Miers. It has the most delicious fruity, berry flavour to it that is sweet but has a tang similar to cranberry juice. Topped up with a little sparkling water, this cordial makes the most refreshing and delicious non-alcoholic drink or for a party it would make a great base to a cocktail, especially when served with a hibiscus flower as a garnish.
Makes approx. 1 litre (easy doubled – I halved the recipe from the original)
30g dried Hibiscus Flowers
1125ml(4 ½ cups) water
1 ½ – 2 limes
While hibiscus flowers (see below)
Lots of ice
Put the dried hibiscus flowers, sugar and water into a medium sized pan and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat and leave to simmer for 30 minutes then remove from the heat and allow to cool. Once cooled strain the juice into a jug and keep the flowers aside for later. Squeeze in the juice of 1 ½ limes and taste to see if it needs any more lime or a touch more sugar depending on your tastes.
Fill some glasses with lots of ice and pour the cordial over the top then finish off with some sparkling water (I tend to do two thirds cordial to one third water but it depends how strong you want it). Serve garnished with a hibiscus flower.
Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup
I absolutely love Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup and until recently always bought them at a rather expensive price. Now however thanks to the above recipe I always have some in my fridge ready to pop into a drink for an elegant garnish. The sweet fragrant syrup is also delicious and makes a refreshing change to any cocktail. Try my Wild Hibiscus Royale the next time you have friends over and wow them with your homemade Hibiscus Flowers and syrup.
Reserved hibiscus flowers from the cordial
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
Put the reserved hibiscus flowers into a jar and set aside. Put the sugar and water into a small pan and bring to a boil, stirring from time to time to help the sugar dissolve. Once the sugar has dissolved let the syrup simmer for 5 minutes then remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly before pouring over the flowers. Leave to cool then keep in the fridge and use as needed in your drink of choice.