Sorrel juice: A Caribbean holiday favorite (by Simone Baptiste)

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Caribbean drink, sorrel, sorrel juice
With Sorrel juice's rich flavor it is a perfect drink for the holidays

Family, food, and travels are synonymous with the holiday season. As leaves begin to change colors and winter coats make their way out of the back of the closet, visions of pumpkin pies, turkeys, and sorrel fill our dreams. Did I lose you somewhere? If you’re a lover of Caribbean cuisine I didn’t. Sorrel is a drink that is a holiday favorite in the Caribbean and many American homes.

Officially named the Roselle plant, the juice drawn from the red sepals of the plant is what is called sorrel. The flowers are white to pale yellow with a dark red spot at the base of each petal, as the fruit matures a stout fleshly calyx at the base of plant begins to enlarge and becomes bright red. Although Sorrel is an Island favorite it can be found around the world and in specialty grocery stores.

Sorrel Recipe


8 ounces dried sorrel

2 cinnamon sticks (each approximately 3 inches long)

1 piece orange peel (fresh or dried, approximately 3 by 1-inch)

12 whole cloves

10-12 cups water

1 1/2 cups sugar (or more to taste. Granulated will give a better colour.)


In a non-corrosive pot, bring 10 cups of water to a boil then add the sorrel, sugar, cinnamon stick, whole cloves and orange peel and stir continuously while the mixture boils for one minute.

Cool and cover with foil or plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature to steep for 2 hours or overnight.

Taste for strength and sweetness. If it is too potent, add water or if too tart add more sugar. Strain the liquid through a fine sieve into a jar and refrigerate. (Discard the spices left in the sieve). The sorrel will stain so use a non-reactive glass jar or bowl. Don’t use plastic.

Recipe from:

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8 thoughts on “Sorrel juice: A Caribbean holiday favorite (by Simone Baptiste)

    […] and Tobago there are several beverages that are consumed during the Christmas season. Among them is sorrel, puncha cream and ginger beer. My favorite is ginger beer because I love ginger — it aids in […]

    kkhart0414 said:
    December 25, 2009 at 4:59 pm

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    June 18, 2010 at 2:15 pm

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    […] The recipes for many traditional Jamaican dishes, including jerk chicken, escoveitched fish, curry shrimp, and rice and peas can be found here. You can find the recipe to make the Sorrel holiday drink here. […] said:
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