Down on the Allotment

What's happening down on the allotment? An intimate account of a passionate veggie grower.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Tropical Treats

Last Winter I discovered a new treat! I found these fresh flowers/fruits in a West Indian shop. These are the product of a tropical hibiscus flower and they are used all over the West Indies and other parts of the world to make a wonderful syrup.These are known as roselles, or sorrell or just hibiscus. They are full of beneficial nutrients which have recently been found to have blood pressure and cholesterol lowering properties.
I have made a lovely warming drink with these dried flowers, add ginger, cinnamon, star anise and clove along with hot water and brown sugar (and a tot of rum). If you go along to Bangchik and Kakdah's blog 'My Little Vegetable Garden' (see link right) you will see them growing fresh.
Do you remember this little fellow? BILBO has been travelling the world via garden bloggers for more than a year now! He spent Christmas in Lund, Sweden, and I am thrilled to announce that he has just arrived with Bangchik and Kakdah in Putrajaya, Malaysia for a tropical trip round their garden. Pop over and see his exploits!

10 Comments:

At 8:50 PM, Anonymous Karen said...

Wow, Bilbo made it to Asia! How cool. Hope he has fun, maybe he'll even see a hibiscus or three. My favorite drink from Mexico is also made with hibiscus flowers, it's called Jamaica. I think it's mostly just steeped hibiscus with a lot of sugar water. Super delish on a hot day!

 
At 10:06 PM, Blogger miss m said...

I am growing roselle this year. Look so pretty and delicious. Can't wait to try !

 
At 11:55 PM, Anonymous Nicole said...

I love sorrel drink. Had it with lunch just yesterday in Guyana.

 
At 2:24 AM, Blogger Gardeness said...

They so pretty and sound great. I like your carrots, btw. As long as it's edible, it's OK with me!

 
At 7:22 PM, Blogger Peggy said...

Hi matron, the flowers do look colourful and any drink benefits from the addition of a tot of rum!
I am goinf to follow the link to see Bilbo's visit to Bangchik.
Your carrots look like ours did so I have been reading your comments to glean any advice on them, but taste is the most important feature of homegrown veg.

 
At 2:31 PM, Blogger Carrie said...

Fab post, they are like something from another world. Your drink sounds heavenly. Got to love Bangchik, just about to visit and see Bilbo, lucky gnome!!

 
At 7:07 PM, Blogger Jo said...

I recognised these as roselles from seeing them on Bangchik's blog. The knowledge we pick up from visiting blogs is amazing. I didn't realise we would be able to obtain them here in the UK.

 
At 7:01 PM, Blogger GetSoiled said...

Oh my, I had not been in your blog in ages...it is lovely to be back visiting again!

I grow sorrel, well, grew it is more like it :-) Ants love it even more than I do! So it became rather treacherous during harvest time.

I think i might still have seeds in my seeds closet. Let me know if you'd like some. It is the most care free plant I have ever grown. Just toss the seeds on the ground in May (for us it is May anyway) and then we'll have the flowers to make "cranberry" sauce for Thanksgiving time come November.

Later! :)

 
At 12:17 AM, Anonymous Bwak said...

Oh I love roselle! Could you please tell me where you bought it exactly? I'm dying to find some...

 
At 12:09 PM, Blogger Matron said...

Bwak - - found these at Brixton market. You might find fresh ones but there are plenty of dried packets.

 

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