What is Sorrel
Sorrel not to be confused with sorrel the herb, is a cousin of the hibiscus flower. The calyces of the flower are dried and made into a popular drink throughout the Caribbean, Latin American (in Mexico it is called ‘Flor de Jamaica’, Australia it is Rosella. Middle Eastern, and Africa countries in Nigeria it is called Zobo drink. It has a tart cranberry flavor.
Sorrel Drink Health Benefits
The calyces of the sorrel are high in Vitamin C and flavonoids. Studies have shown that these properties have great health benefits. They are anti-inflammatory, protecting the body from oxidative damages.
In Jamaica, the calyces of the sorrel are collected, then dried. The dried calyces are then steeped in boiling water along with ginger and other whole spices such as allspice, cinnamon sticks, cloves.
Jamaican sorrel drink is traditionally sweetened with sugar and rum is added. I love to make mine simple, just with the addition of ginger and orange skin without the alcohol. I normally steep mine overnight but it’s not necessary. Check out my favorite holiday season recipes 25 HOLIDAY RECIPES.
Dried sorrel can be found in African, West Indian, and Asian grocers. Other names that it could be called are, ‘Jamaican Flower’, ‘Agua de Flor de Jamaica,’ ‘Jamaican Flower,’ ‘Hibiscus’. You can also purchase it online HERE.
I was fortunate to get a large bag of freshly picked sorrel from a new friend here in Florida. I will be drying the calyces so they can last me throughout the year until I can grow my own.
I used the dried ones I already had for this recipe since most people will be able to get the dried ones. Above, I share a photo of how the fresh ones look. I’m fortunate to have an orange tree growing here, the tree is loaded with oranges. So I decided to add orange peel to my recipe. In Jamaica sugar is the sweetener of choice, but you can substitute with maple syrup or liquid stevia.
Other Delicious Jamaican Recipes To Try:
- Jamaican Christmas Cake
- Jamaican Callaloo
- Jamaican Rice And Peas
- Jamaican Lentil Patties
- Jamaican Cornmeal Porridge
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- Energy: 100 kcal / 418 kJ
- Preparation: 10 min
- Cooking: 5 min
- Ready in: 15 min
- Bring water to boil in a large pot. Add sorrel, ginger, orange peel and allspice berries.
- Remove from heat and allow to steep for 2 hours or cool and place in the refrigerator overnight
- Strain. Sweeten with your favorite sweetener. Refrigerate and enjoy!