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I got hooked on karkade in Egypt. Anyone know of a good source I can use once my vacation-purchased supply runs out? It looks like dried hibiscus leaves only, but I don't know if it's a specific kind of hibiscus (rather than the one grandma grew in her yard in Florida). Is it called other things that might be more readily available? The closest thing I can find is Red Zinger :hmmm:

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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Karkade is made using the dried calyx from the flower of a specific kind of hibiscus.

It is often also called Roselle, sorrel, or Jamaica. Plant Latin: Hibiscus sabdariffa

If you go to a Mexican or Latin American specialty store, you will probably find it sold in bulk as "Flor de Jamaica."

You can also order it from eGullet member Rancho Gordo:

Jamaica (Hibiscus Flowers)

Edited by eje (log)


Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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  • 2 weeks later...

Totally unrelated to this thread, I happened to buy some dried hibiscus at the local whole foods market while i was picking up some other things today.

Operating mostly off the cuff, I made an infusion of about 5 flowers to 8 or 10 ounces of hot water and let steep for just a minute or two.

I have to say, I'm intrigued, but MAN was the resulting liquor tart! Done the "right" way (and i assume there is some prescribed method, I just haven't found it yet) the stuff isn't quite so puckering is it?

But wow, the color...

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