Friday, July 6, 2012

Making flower tea and Urban farm challenge June

I have plenty of juicy rosella fruits on my bush out in the back.  The thing is that I don't want to make jam.  That seems to be all anyone ever does with rosellas... I once bought a jar of the whole fruits preserves in syrup and those in the bottom of a glass of champagne were rather yummy.

I was in fact thinking of something a bit healthier, so I picked a few flowers (actually they are the calyx), removed the seed pod and set them into a slow oven (wish I had a dehydrator)  until crispy.  I haven't had much success in the past with making herbal teas. They often taste like little bits of dried grass to me, not very appetizing.

I popped a few dried leaves into some boiling water and left them to infuse - what a lovely color!
The flavor was lovely - and I think if I added a bit of lemongrass and citrus peel it would be even better.  I might even try to roll them up into little parcels that unfurl like a flower opening when placed in hot water.   I can see lots of tea experiments coming up.

I am linking this to the Urban farm challenge  as this month was all about infusions - I enjoyed this challenge and it has got me imagining more teas I can make.  I am glad I tried teas once again as this time it was much more of a success.  Thanks for the challenge to spur me on!  Why don't you go and see what the others in the challenge have been making.?  Have you dried teas?  do you have a de-hydrator? Anyone used a solar de-hydrator?

24 comments:

  1. Hi there, love your post on Rosella tea....I hope to have better luck with my plants next season as I only got enough to save seed this time due to a fungus attacking all the plants.
    Well done.

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    1. Gosh we have had fungus problems as well - in fact I had two rosellas and in the end I just pulled out one of them as it was having so many problems and I didn't want it to infect this one. I wonder if they dont like to be planted in the same spot again?

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  2. I think you should be able to make a pie with the rosellas if you mix them with some apples. Try stewing the fruits then stir them together and make a pie, much as you would do rhubarb and apple. You can eat the soft calyx raw in salad.

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    1. I am not sure that i have enough for a pie, and I really do enjoy the tea. I might try some in salads - that sounds interesting...

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  3. That certainly is a pretty color! :)

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    1. Aha! Yes well, you would think that, seeing that pink is your favourite color! It was tasty too!

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  4. I love roselle flowers which i see in blogs, i wonder why i can't see them here. I am curious to taste those jam, and of course the tea like yours.

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    1. I would think that they would grow there since you have a similar climate. If you get celestial seasonings herb tea there, the red zinger is rosella!

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  5. I've never even heard of roselle flowers so this was very interesting to read. You had commented on my blog the other day regarding fridge pickles and a potential recipe...here's what I came up with for you, hope it helps!

    Hi Africanaussie! (I love your name!)
    Thanks so much for taking the time to comment. I've never thought of pickling excess tomatoes...maybe that would help me to like them more!? I'll have to try...
    As for the fridge pickles...I am usually lazy and buy a Mrs. Wages brand packet (we can find them in our grocery stores here with the canning supplies) I love the dill pickles but there are bread and butter pkts too. For when I actually take the time to make the pickling mix myself I always follow this recipe...
    http://www.foodinjars.com/2011/06/urban-preserving-refrigerator-dill-pickles/

    Stay in touch!
    XO
    Kaitlin

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    1. thanks for that information - I think it is definitely worth trying, although our cucumbers have suddenly wilted with some sort of mildew disease. Glad to introduce you to a new plant!

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  6. Sounds, and looks, good! I used to drink a very nice (storebought) rosehip and hibiscus tea with lemongrass and ginger (if I remember correctly) so I think your idea of adding lemongrass could work well.

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    1. Yes that sounds nice, no rosehips here, but definitely the lemongrass and ginger.

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  7. Love this post. We managed to grow rosellas once in a really good hot summer but haven't had the climate for them since. That tea looks juuuuuuuust right . Also had rosella flowers in champagne.Just make sure you tell people its the flower not the bird you are drinking - in my experience it can cause some strange looks from people when I tell them I just had rosella jam on toast.

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    1. I have noticed non-Australians doing a double-take on the name! I think I will be able to save seeds so that I am not without them from now on.

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  8. Hi AA
    I have grown Rosella too and I stewed some up to add to breakfast ceral like you would Rhubarb. I also made some cordial and tea like you.

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    1. It sounds as though you have tried them all ways. I am leaving them now until they are easy to pick off - I might have picked those a bit early.

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  9. I have tried several types of tea including ginger and lemon, mint and others. They are absolutely delicious and great especially in the evening. Great post!

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    1. I am a huge fan of different teas, although my very favourite is South African rooibos (redbush)

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  10. Dearest Africanaussie,
    Oh, you made tea from Rosella as you said you would♡♡♡ Yes, lovely color and happy to know it came out wonderfully. And the cup you used is really a good match with color, isn't it(*^_^*) Haha, I never knew de-hydrator as an home appliance p;)

    Sending you lots of love and hugs from Japan, xoxo Miyako*

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    1. I am looking at making a solar dryer - I don't dry that many things, but like the idea of suing the sun. That lovely cup was a gift from my daughter-in-law.

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  11. Your nice post brings back lovely memories of past years, Gillian. My family members used to enjoy a nice cool drink, made from commercially bottled rosella fruits. Too bad, I don't see them anymore nowadays!

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    1. Oh well you should be able to grow them there! I have never seen it here commercially bottled. I know in the Caribbean everyone made it - they added lots of sugar though -lol.

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  12. Loved the Roselle tea in Egypt so wanting to do this some day. I do make tea from Lemongrass and also Lemon leaves. Have just bought a Stevia plant to play around with.....a couple of leaves in my tea and coffee instead of sugar. Looks hopeful. A poor mans dryer is placing the fruit on a tray under the windscreen of the car....in the car. I know of people who dry their tomatoes that way.

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    1. Stellamarina,
      I had a stevia plant, but it died during the wet season - I might try it again. what a great idea using the car windshield! I leave my bread in the hot car!

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