ZWT7 Africa. Very popular in Egypt and Sudan. This beverage is said to have been a preferred drink of the pharaohs. In Egypt and Sudan, wedding celebrations are traditionally toasted with a glass of hibiscus tea. In Egypt, karkadé as it is called in Arabic, is used as a means to lower blood pressure if consumed in high amounts. Every busy street, train station, bus depot, has its vendors & the dried flowers may be found in every market. From, www.congocookbook.com.
- 2 -3 cups dried hibiscus flowers (often called red sorrel or roselle)
- 2 quarts cold water
- 1 -2 cup sugar
1-2 of the following optional flavorings
- 1 sprig mint (optional)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional, to be halal make sure there is no alcohol)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon grated fresh gingerroot (optional)
- 1 teaspoon orange flower water (optional)
- 1⁄2 cup lemon juice (optional)
- Briefly rinse the dried flowers in cool water.
- In a saucepan heat two quarts (approximately two litres) of cold water. As soon as the water begins to boil, add the dried hibiscus. Immediately remove from heat and let the flowers steep for ten minutes.
- Pour the water from the pot into a pitcher using a strainer (lined with a cheesecloth) to separate the flowers from the water. (Be sure not to pour any of the flower sediment into the pitcher.).
- Stir in the sugar.
- Add any other flavorings (if desired).
- Add ice and chill completely.
- May be served over ice as well.
- Note: One common combination of flavorings is vanilla and mint. Bissap can be prepared double-strength, by using only half as much water. The resulting Jus de Bissap can be mixed with seltzer water, or lemon-lime soda. Jus de Bissap can also be mixed in cocktails.
- Also called l'Oseille de Guinée, Guinea Sorrel, and Karkadé.