Lerato’s Christmas citrus treat: Honey tangerines in hibiscus flower syrup
It’s Christmas weekend! What a fantastic treat for us on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. And I know we are all looking forward to eating all the jollof rice, pies and roasts. I recently planned my own Christmas menu and I couldn’t resist the temptation to add more and more. My brother in law is sorting out pudding and as he is vegan he likes to get a special fruity pudding. Its so rich and moist with some oat cream which goes on top, but also very heavy after all that feasting.
And so, I have added a fruit dessert which we can enjoy as a sweet treat in between and then we can enjoy cakes and puddings after doing a bit of exercise dancing. As a child, I remember peeling a tangerine while holding it up to my face with my eyes closed. That refreshing spritz of citrus water always felt like a mini spa break., and even now it brings back such sweet memories. It is delicious, refreshing and the perfect palate cleanser.
If you are in Africa then Tangerines will most likely be available, but in some countries tangerines are less popular, instead clementines are common because they have little or no seeds. This is not really a syrup in the sense that it is not one part water and one part sugar as a syrup recipe calls for.
Tangerines are already quite sweet, clementines are less sweet, so this recipe really allows you to tailor the ingredients to your preferred taste. Add more or less honey to suit you, and use sugar if you don’t have honey. But honey is far more delicious I can assure you.
Honey Tangerines in Hibiscus Flower Syrup
For 6 – 8 tummies
Preparation time: 20 minutes to 1 hour
10 – 12 tangerines or clementine, peeled & separated
1 tbsp dried hibiscus leaves
Juice of two lemons
½ tsp lemon zest
2 tbsp honey
4 basil leaves, chopped
Let’s get cooking! Just a bit of cooking…
Let’s start with the hibiscus brew. On medium heat bring a small pot to the boil with 500ml of cold water. Rinse the hibiscus leaves and add into the pot. Also add the hibiscus peels. Once hot, turn heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Take off the heat and leave to steep for up 20 minutes. Using a sift with tiny holes, drain the liquid and discard the peels and leaves.
Add the honey, lemon juice, chopped basil and lemon zest. If the honey is thick, mix it with a table spoon of hot water before adding to the steeped hibiscus liquid. Mix well and add the tangerines into the liquid. You can serve immediately, in bowls or cute little glass cups. But the longer the fruit sits in the hibiscus syrup, the more it will absorb its yummy honey, citrus flavours. Oh! I cannot wait to finish off Christmas lunch with this!
HAVE A HAPPY CHRISTMAS, WITH LOTS OF JOY, PEACE, LOVE AND DELICIOUS FOOD! From my family to yours!
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