I found this beautiful wild hibiscus while walking in Alleppey, India last week and had to share this because I adore this plant infusion hot or cold. As well as being used as a tea its also a great addition to a summer punch or cocktail and I make a hibiscus syrup with the gorgeous red flowers which can be used in food and drinks to give a slightly floral delicate note. We use the calyx of the hibiscus sabdariffa variety for ingestion, this is the outermost whorl of the flowers which is dried and becomes an intensely deep red, almost black colour and releases a bright red pigment which colours and flavours when added to hot water.
Hibiscus has a full flavour which has a fruity zing & stimulates your taste buds, its a delicious infusion which is a daily staple in many parts of the world including India, Egypt, Africa and the Caribbean as well as here at The Foxglove Apothecary. I include it in some of my pre blended infusions and I drink it on its own while I'm mixing tinctures or blending teas or after heavy meal as I always feel it helps me to digest particularly rich foods.
It's used medicinally as an anti oxidant, is a source of vitamin C, ascorbic acid and can help stimulate the immune system as well as being used for high blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar. As such it's well regarded as a plant medicine for the heart and cardiovascular system. Its regarded by some cultures as uplifting to the mood so is also recommended to help with depression and anxiety, what more could we want from this beautiful bright tropical looking flower!
In order to honor this plant I'm giving away a free taster packet of hibiscus tea with every new appointment booked this week. I'm back at Covent Garden this Friday 29th March and every fortnight after and am now booking appointments in London & Westcliff.
Please contact me directly to make an appointment and receive your hibiscus sample.
I want to share what I know about natural medicine with you. I also love stories and articles about food and nature so in this blog I will be looking at all these subjects and how they come together in our daily lives.