Agua de jamaica — A hibiscus punch for a hot summer day
If there is one thing Mexicans do better than just about anyone else it is “stay cool in the summer.” Mexican cuisine is loaded with refreshing beverages. Agua de jamaica is one of my favorites because not only does it keep you cool and hydrated, it helps you maintain a healthy heart. I wrote about its record on lowering blood pressure in detail (here).
This recipe makes a strong drink. You can load it with ice cubes and still have great flavor. Without the ice cubes, you might want to dilute it a bit. I don’t but this is definitely a “suit yourself” situation.
Honey is an excellent sweetener for this drink but you can certainly use whatever sweetener you prefer.
As for where to buy hibiscus, the Half Pint Hacks in the video below are right: a Mexican grocery store is your economical option but you can buy it online easily enough in bulk. Here’s a lead for you on where to buy it.
Agua de Jamaica Ingredients
(Makes one quart of strong punch)
- 1/2 cup of dried hibiscus
- 1/4 cup of honey, sugar, or your sweetener to taste
- 4 cups of boiling water
Agua de Jamaica Steps
- Add the hibiscus and sweetener to a sauce pan.
- Cover with boiling water.
- Stir to help dissolve the sweetener.
- Cover with a lid and let it sit for at least 20 minutes and, better yet, over night for maximum flavor.
- Strain out the hibiscus and retain the liquid.
- Chill and serve.