Zobo is a familiar beverage produced from dried Roselle leaves (Hibiscus Sabdariffa) in warm water. Popular in Northern Nigeria, other Nigerians have grown to love Zobo so much that it is not unusual to have it served chilled at parties. The beverage is also common in the Carribean and is referred to as Sorrel over there.
If you’ve been drinking Zobo occasionally but secretly wished you could have it handy at home every now and then, then you’re in luck today and if you love this drink as much as I do, then you would definitely love Dooney‘s 10 ingredients recipe.
Let’s dig in…
- 2 cups of the zobo leaves
- 6 cups of water
- 1 orange – juice and rind
- 1/2 a lemon – juice, and rind
- 2 tablespoons of whole cloves – called konafuru
- 1 tablespoon of dried chilli flakes – substitute with dried shombo or cayenne pepper (dry pepper)
- 1 cinnamon stick – substitute with 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon powder
- 2 tablespoons of organic honey
- 2 stumps of fresh ginger
- Sugar syrup to finish – optional
Directions for the Zobo
- Rinse your zobo with cold water as the leaves tend to hold a lot of dust. Preferably under a running tap, as this will reduce the essence of the leaves rinsing out.
- Measure the cloves and grind into a powder
- Prep the other ingredients i.e slice the orange, extract the juice and cut up the pulp and rind into quarters. Do the same for the lemon. Peel the skin of the ginger and pound in a mortar and pestle or roughly blend.
- In a pot, add the zobo leaves and 6 cups of cold water. Set the heat to low and add all the ingredients from Step 3, including the cinnamon stick. The taste of the drink is more intense when you let the leaves steep slowly with the ingredients. The end result is also a very rich and thick juice. Intense heat also destroys the flavour, hence low heat.
- When the mixture starts to boil, take it off the heat. Add your dried chilli flakes – as much as you would like.
- Transfer the mixture into a plastic bowl, add the honey and leave to cool down. You can sieve out the leaves, the orange, lemon and cinnamon stick once it cools or leave it to steep further for 2 days.
- Chill in the fridge, or hasten the process by adding ice cubes and serve garnished with slices of Orange, Lemon, and Lime. Best not to add sugar syrup until you are ready to serve. Sugar alters the taste after some time in the fridge.
Voila! There you have it. How do you make your Zobo?
P.S: You have to be careful while enjoying your drink because any spillage and your dress will almost be ruined.
Featured photo credit: Google images
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