Our African Champagne (The Wonders of Zobo)
Roselle(Hibiscus) has been used in folk medicine as a diuretic and mild laxative, as well as in treating cancer and cardiac and nerve diseases. Although information is limited, the potential for hibiscus use in treating hypertension and cancer, as well as for its lipid-lowering and renal effects, are being investigated.
It is high in calcium, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin C and iron. The beverage has no caffeine. In East Africa, “Sudan tea” is consumed as medicine to cure coughs. In Guatamala, roselle is believed to cure hangovers. In Senegal, a roselle extract is said to lower blood pressure. In India, Africa and Central America, infusions made from roselle calyces or seeds are prescribed as a diuretic, to stimulate bile production and to treat fever.
Now, What’s New?
Zobo drink has been described as a local drink that helps in lowering blood pressure as it contains an enzyme inhibitor which blocks the production of Amylase. Amylase is an enzyme that breaks down complex sugars and starches. Drinking a cup of hisbicus tea or zobo after meals is said to reduce the absorption of dietary carbohydrates and assist in weight loss.
It is rich in Vitamin C and makes a wonderful herbal remedy to fight off colds and infections.
In addition, hibiscus tea helps to prevent kidney stones, according to a study reported in the May 2008 issue of The Journal of Ethnopharmacology. The study showed that hibiscus tea improved the kidney’s ability to filter out the waste product — uric acid and oxalic acid, both of which can form kidney stones if they accumulate to excessively high levels.
In addition to its natural blessedness, fermentation is a process zobo passes through and thisintroduces microorganisms which process the original product to churn out more nutrients and phytochemicals which nourish the body.
Please Do Not Drink a Drum of The Thing!
However, although hibiscus seems to be safe for most people, research findings show that it is unsafe to take during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Real news findings also reveal that the drink has no harmful effect on the liver but when consumed in high doses could be harmful to the kidney.
Here’s a Quick Recipe on how to Prepare a Healthful and Delicious Jug of Zobo Drink:
• 150g Zobo leaves
• 7 Liters water
• 30g Dry ginger or Fresh ginger
• 3 tbsps. Cloves a.k.a Konofiri
• 1 Large Pineapple
• Artificial flavors and sweeteners such as (foster Clark’s Pineapple flavor, jolly juice e.t.c) -Optional.
• Sugar Cane or Honey – Optional (You can substitute with Sugar)
Step 1: Before peeling the pineapple, wash the skin thoroughly and rinse with clean water. You can use both the inner part and the outer skin to get added flavor. (P.S: Use the skin only if you are sure of how it was stored or if it’s been thoroughly washed.) Peel and Dice the fruit – Set aside
Step 2: Wash the dry leaves of the hibiscus severally with cold water. This is because the leaves are often times dirty due to the way they are stored. Once you’re done washing, place the washed leaves in a large pot and add the water and turn on your burner.
Step 3: Add the chunks of pineapple, ginger and Cloves (Konofiri). The taste of the zobo really intensifies when it’s boiled with the ingredients unlike when its left to steep. Leave to boil for about 25mins.
Step 4: Sieve out the extract into a bowl and leave the drink to cool. The boiled leaves in the pot can still be reused till the red color of the zobo totally reduces. You’d know when the red color becomes less intense.
Step 5: This is supposed to be a health drink so i ensure i use only natural sweeteners and flavors like honey, sugar cane juice, pineapple juice etc. Alternatively if you don’t have the natural juices, you can substitute with Artificial flavors and sweeteners such as Foster clarks flavor, Nutri C, jolly juice e.t.c.
Step 6: Refrigerate and serve cold. ( Recipe Culled fromwww.Dobbyssignature.com).
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The author Prince
Hi, I’m Prince.. a registered Dietitian, an avid reader and a passionate writer. I hope you enjoy my articles as much as I enjoy writing them