If you’d love to try something new in your classic tea recipe, try hibiscus tea.
So, how do you make hibiscus tea?
Hibiscus tea is famous for its immense health benefits. It has a tart, lemony taste that will make you wish for more.
But how do you make hibiscus tea properly? Do you use dried or fresh flowers?
Hot hibiscus tea
A cup of hot hibiscus tea in the morning is a good way to start your day. It leaves you feeling rejuvenated and energetic.
So how do you prepare a hot cup of hibiscus tea?
To prepare hot hibiscus tea, you can use either dried or fresh hibiscus flowers. For the dried flowers, you can get them from your nearest food shop.
For the fresh flowers, you can pluck them directly from your garden. Remove the calyx, the leaves, and the part where the seeds are attached. Ensure that you clean the petals off any dirt from the farm.
Also, it would be best to use flowers with no pesticide used on them.
What you require
- 2 teaspoons of dried hibiscus flowers
- Your sweetener of choice such as sugar or honey
Steps in making hot hibiscus tea
First, get water in a pot and put it on the stove to boil. As you wait for the water to boil, you can put your other ingredients ready. Also, get the teapot that you will be using prepared and clean it.
Next, put your dried hibiscus flowers into an empty teapot. You can use two teaspoons (10ml) of dried tea hibiscus flowers. However, you can use more or less depending on your preference. If you want stronger tea, use more dried hibiscus flowers and vice versa.
Note, hibiscus tea does not have caffeine. As such, making your tea stronger may not give you an instant effect as caffeine does.
After that, take the boiling water and pour it into the teapot. You can fill the teapot to the bream. Alternatively, you can use as much water as you deem enough for your consumption.
Note, you are dealing with hot water. You should, therefore, be careful not to get burned. You should carefully put the water in the teapot to avoid splashing. You can also use a tea cozy or oven mitts to protect yourself from burn injuries.
As mentioned earlier, hibiscus tea does not contain any caffeine. So what happens if you want some caffeine?
Take a teabag of your caffeinated tea and add it to the mixture. This will offer you the energy you need to face the day. It also lifts your spirits and makes you alert.
If you want more caffeine, add more teabags of the caffeinated tea.
Next, go to the easiest part of the process, which is steeping. Leave the tea to steep for about five minutes. You will notice a change in color to a distinctive red color. Five minutes are also enough to give your hibiscus tea a tart flavor. If you want to have a stronger flavor, let the tea steep for longer. If you want a weak flavor, the tea should steep for a lesser period.
Then, pour the tea into your cup as you strain it. If your teapot has a built-in filter or mesh, the better. If it does not have, use a fine strainer or mesh to strain the tea as you pour it in your cup.
You can also leave the hibiscus flowers in the tea. They will not cause you any harm.
Your tea is now ready, and you can enjoy it alone or with family and friends. If you like the tart taste of hibiscus tea, then you can have it as it is. Otherwise, you can use sweetener of your choice such as honey or sugar.
You can also give your hibiscus tea something extra by adding garnish. You can use lime, cinnamon, mint, and so on.
Making iced hibiscus tea
What you require
- 15 grams of dried hibiscus flowers
- Four cups of cold water
- You can use some ingredients from the hot hibiscus tea recipe
- You can also have a syrup to lift the taste of the iced tea. You can make the syrup using one cup of sugar and one cup of water.
Steps in making iced hibiscus tea
Brewing iced hibiscus tea is a simple and straightforward process as long as you have the ingredients right.
However, it takes longer to brew that hot hibiscus tea. First, put the dried hibiscus tea flowers in a pitcher.
Then, pour water into the pitcher and stir to combine the mixture.
If you want to have some caffeine in your tea, add your caffeinated tea bag at this time. You should also add your garnishes such as lemon, mint, cinnamon, etc.
After that, cover the mixture with a foil. You are using cold water to brew your tea which requires more time.
Unlike hot water, cold water requires time to extract flavors from the ingredients. As such, you should allow your tea to steep for about 12 hours to get the best taste. Put the mixture in a fridge and allow it to extract the flavors and color.
When you are satisfied with the color and flavor of your hibiscus tea, remove it from the refrigerator. Then, put ice into your serving cups.
Use a strainer to get rid of the ingredients and flowers as you pour the tea into the cups.
You can still re-garnish for a better presentation.
Finally, you can lift the taste of your hibiscus tea to make it more pleasant. You can use sugar or honey to sweeten it. However, cold water has a challenge dissolving solids such as sugar. Thus, the best idea would be to sweeten your tea using syrup.
To make syrup, you can mix one cup of sugar and one cup of water. Put the mixture on a stove and stir until the sugar dissolves completely.
Tips on how to make a perfect cup of hibiscus tea
First, it is better to hibiscus tea flowers than using tea bags. Loose flowers are of better quality, and you can see the full shape of the flower. For the full hibiscus flower, it can release its full flavor while brewing.
On the other hand, tea leaves consist of small parts of the flowers. The broken pieces are not able to spread entirely to release the flavor. Thus, hibiscus tea bags do not give the best taste of hibiscus tea. However, hibiscus tea bags are convenient. Not only can you carry them around, but they are also fast to prepare.
Secondly, you can use a glass teapot for making your tea. Hibiscus tea has an attractive red color. Using a glass teapot, therefore, allows you to enjoy the rich and beautiful color of the tea.
Also, you should use a specific teapot for making hibiscus tea. Do not mix the teapot for making hibiscus tea with other flavors. Thus, the tart flavor of hibiscus tea will not be contaminated.
You can use your sweetener of choice to lift the taste of your hibiscus tea. If you are making iced cold tea, using solid sugar will not be ideal. This is because the sugar will have a challenge dissolving in cold water. Therefore, you should make a syrup and use it to sweeten your tea.
How can you prepare hibiscus at home?
As mentioned earlier, you can use either dried or fresh hibiscus flowers to make tea. You can get the dried hibiscus flowers from the food shop. For the fresh hibiscus flowers, you can get them fresh from your garden. You can also dry hibiscus flowers at home.
So how do you prepare hibiscus flowers?
First, look for ripe hibiscus flowers from your garden. The hibiscus plant can bloom throughout the year. As such, you won’t have problems getting ripe flowers. Ripe hibiscus flowers will start to wilt and have wrinkles.
The wrinkles are an indication that the flowers are ready for harvest. If you don’t harvest them at this time, they will fall off.
Next, pluck the flower. The entire flower consists of the petals and the calyx. The calyx is the part at the bottom that connects the flower to the stem.
After you pluck your flowers, remove the seed pods. As you remove the seed pods, you should try to leave the calyx intact. There is a single seed pod in every calyx. To remove the seed pod, cut a slit on the calyx and then pop the seed pod out.
Slitting the calyx will not affect the flavor of the hibiscus tea at all.
When you finish removing the seed pods from the calyx, you can use the calyxes in making your tea. You can use the steps as of preparing hibiscus tea using fresh flowers.
If you do not want to use the hibiscus flowers immediately, you can dry them for later use. First, pat them using a towel to get rid of any moisture. Let the flowers dry completely before you can store them.
There are various ways in which you can dry and store the flowers. They include:
- If there is enough sun, you can put the flowers out to dry. Ensure you put them where pets cannot get them.
- Place the hibiscus flowers on a tray and then put them in an oven. After that, regulate the temperature in the oven to around 100 degrees F. the hibiscus flowers will slowly dry for storing.
- Additionally, you can also store your hibiscus flowers in a container with silica. The container should be airtight. You can get the silica for drying from chemical dealers.
Why should you take hibiscus tea?
There are many health benefits associated with hibiscus tea. That is why its use has been on the rise.
Hibiscus tea is not seen as true tea as it does not come from Camellia Sinensis, which is the tea plant. It lies under herbal types of tea that have no caffeine.
Caffeine is a strong stimulant. When you induce it, it activates your brain, making you alert. It is, therefore, a great way of starting the day as it allows you to concentrate. However, caffeine is not ideal for everyone. For some, caffeine causes them to be jittery and anxious.
As such, if you do not want the effects of caffeine (but be careful if you are pregnant), you can go for hibiscus tea. Hibiscus tea offers you a tart flavor and gives you a refreshing feeling.
You can add other additives to hibiscus tea to make it sweeter and to enhance its health benefits. Some of the additives you can use include honey, lemon, cinnamon, mint, and so on.
Hibiscus tea has long been associated with lowering blood pressure. As such, it is ideal for use by people suffering from high blood pressure. Using hibiscus to lower blood pressure is safe. Unlike other hypertension medications, hibiscus has limited side effects.
The hibiscus plant has been in use for long in African and Asian cultures in treating high blood pressure.
Researchers in Iran researched to confirm hibiscus tea as a remedy for high blood pressure.
They took 54 people suffering from high blood pressure. They gave the individuals 10 ounces of either hibiscus tea or black tea for 12 days.
For the group taking black tea, there was a slight decrease in blood pressure.
For the group taking hibiscus tea, there was a 10% decrease in blood pressure after 12 days.
Hibiscus tea deals with high blood pressure because of its diuretic properties. This leads you to take a lot of fluids like water to hydrate. It also dilates the arteries and inhibits the production of hormones that cause constriction of blood vessels.
It also comes with a lot of antioxidants and boosts your immune system.
Hibiscus tea comes with a lot of useful nutrients for your body. For instance, it comes with Vitamin C, which helps in repairing bones, teeth, and so on.
Do you love hibiscus tea? Do you know how to prepare it properly?
Brewing hibiscus tea properly ensures that you get the perfect flavor. It also ensures that you enjoy all the health benefits that it comes with.
We have provided you with the best way you can brew your hibiscus cup of tea. Grab one and enjoy.