Wild Hibiscus is a flower that grows in the West Indies. Its use is widely celebrated during the Holidays at family functions and gatherings. The flower is used to make a cocktail concoction called Sorrel. I watched as my mother would boil the ginger and add the hibiscus flower. She would let the hibiscus draw out meaning leaving it untouched for a hour or two. She would continue to add her other ingredients. Here is my version of a sorrel simple syrup recipe that can be applied to cakes. Excess use of simple syrup can make a cake soggy and too sweet. Use a silicon baking brush to avoid drenching your cake. This recipe is for a simple syrup not the cocktail drink.
- 1 quart filtered or distilled water
- ½ lb granulated sugar
- ½ cup Hibiscus flower
- 2-4 oz. fresh ginger bark
- 5 cups dried hibiscus flower
- red wine (optional)
Directions: Spread the sorrel out on parchment paper which will make it easy to spot and remove any debris or unfit sorrel pieces. After you have cleaned the sorrel place them into a large cooking pot with 1 quart of water. Add the two rounded tablespoons of ginger. Boil the mixture for 10 minutes after it begins to boil. Remove immediately and pour through a strainer into a suitable container. Return the remains from the container back into the pot and add ½ lb of granulated sugar. Bring to a rapid boil again and remove from stove after the syrup has become thick and sticky like. Remove the pot from the fire and allow cooling for up to 2 hours to continue the thickening process. Pour simple syrup into suitable container. I prefer to use a glass container. The syrup needs to cool for a few hours.
This recipe yielded two 8 oz glass jars of Hibiscus simple syrup.