The Hibiscus plant is thought to be native to north Africa; there are many forms of the plant used commercially for its flavour, as an ornamental flower or in traditional forms of medicine. Hibiscus sabdariffa produces the flower most commonly associated as an ingredient in food and drink, it has distinctive yellow petals with a red centre and a deep red calyx, the cup shaped structure that supports the flower.
Hibiscus has been used for many years as a base for many herbal or ‘fruit’ teas, it is the sharp flavour and strong colour of hibiscus that is often mistaken for a berry. The flower of hibiscus contains approximately 10% mucilage leading to a gentle infusion which remains popular today throughout the world.
Cold water infusions are a perfect way to enjoy hibiscus, which lends its extraordinary colour and sharp flavour to any infusion.