Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Celebrate the Holidays with Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup!

The Wild Hibiscus Flower Company is a small family owned & operated firm run by a passionate team in Sydney, Australia. Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup are the original creation of Lee Etherington who invented the product 11 years ago in 1997.
Wild Hibiscus Flowers are unique in all the world and are now sold in 30 countries across the globe through retailers as prestigious as Harvey Nichols in London, Citarella in New York, Galerie Lafayette in Paris, and Passiflora in Hillsdale, NY.
Happy Holidays 
Passiflora Home!

Here are a few of our Favorite recipes for you to play with during your Holiday Festivities.  If you are inspired and have your own recipes, please share them with us and we will post them here. 

Hibiscus, Warm Brie and Almond Crostini
24 servings
1 jar Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup
(reserve the syrup)
8 oz. Brie
1 baguette, sliced diagonally
3/4 cup sliced almonds, with skin
Garnish: snipped chives or fresh thyme
Preheat oven to 450° F. Drain hibiscus flowers and reserve syrup. Cut each flower in half.  Cut brie into 1/4-inch-thick slices sized to cover about three quarters of a baguette slice. Spread the almonds in a flat dish. Press brie firmly onto the bread slices then, face down, into the almonds.  Place crostini right side up on baking sheet and bake until brie is soft, bread is crispy, and nuts are lightly toasted, about 4 to 6 minutes.  Right before serving, top each one with a hibiscus flower, drizzle lightly with reserved syrup and garnish with a touch of herbs.
Tip:  To thicken hibiscus syrup, bring to a boil in small saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until syrup is reduced by 1/3 or coats the back of a spoon. Syrup will thicken more as it cools.

Hibiscus Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
4 to 6 starter servings

1 jar Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup
1 tsp. poppy seeds
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
3 Tbsp. olive oil
Salt and pepper
6 cups mixed salad greens (about one 5-oz bag)
1 large orange, peeled and diced

Drain hibiscus flowers and reserve syrup. Cut each flower in quarters, set aside.
Combine the poppy seeds, mustard and cider vinegar in a large bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the reserved syrup.  Whisk in the olive oil and season to taste.  Add the greens to the dressing and gently toss. Divide among plates and scatter with orange pieces and hibiscus flowers. Serve immediately.
Save remaining syrup to add to cocktails or lemonade.

Grilled Chicken & Hibiscus Skewers with Sassy Ginger Dipping Sauce
4 skewers
1 jar Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup
1 Tbsp. finely minced or grated fresh ginger
1/2 to 1 tsp. hot sauce
3 green onions (scallions)
1 to1 1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 32 pieces
Vegetable oil as needed
Salt and pepper
4 metal skewers or 10" heavy wood skewers soaked in water

Drain hibiscus flowers, reserving syrup in a small bowl.
To make the dipping sauce: Mix ginger and hot sauce into the reserved syrup.
Trim and cut each green onion into 4 pieces. Thread each skewer as follows: 2 pieces of
chicken, 1 piece of green onion, then 1 hibiscus flower*; repeat twice; then finish with 2
pieces of chicken. Lightly brush skewers with oil and season to taste with salt and
Preheat grill to medium-high. Cook skewers until chicken is cooked through, about 4 to 5
minutes per side. Drizzle skewers with dipping sauce and serve extra on the side.
*Cut one flower in half if needed; jars contain approximately 11–12 flowers.

Hibiscus Berry Sundae
4 servings

This sundae is also excellent built on a slice of angle food or pound cake.

1 jar Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup
1 pint vanilla ice cream
1 cup fresh raspberries or quartered strawberries
Whipped cream
Chopped pistachio nuts (optional)

Drain hibiscus flowers and reserve syrup. Cut each flower in half.
Scoop ice cream into 4 bowls. Scatter with berries and then drizzle with the hibiscus
syrup. Top with a pouf of whipped cream and scatter with hibiscus flowers and nuts.
Serve immediately


1 quart vodka
Rind of 1/2 lemon 
1/4 - 1/3 cup Hibiscus Syrup
Rose water (available at Indian and specialty grocers)

First, pour yourself a nice stiff shot of the vodka and enjoy it while you prepare the lemon peel. Remove as much of the white as possible. Add it, the Hibiscus Syrup, lemon rind and a few drops of rose water (if desired) to the bottle of vodka. Close bottle tightly, shake gently and allow to stand at room temperature for one week or more. Shake the bottle form time to time when the mood strikes you. When ready to serve, strain the mixture through cheesecloth or a paper coffee filter and serve chilled or over ice. Makes 1 quart.
Variations: Use the rind of 1/2 orange in place of the lemon. Or go nuts and add a few allspice berries or red peppercorns to the bottle. A tablespoon or so of good wild honey (clover, orange flower or acacia) is also delicious.

Strawberry-Hibiscus Granita


  • 1 sprig basil leaves for garnish
  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled, quartered, plus 1 1/2 cups diced strawberries for garnish
  • 6 Wild Hibiscus Flowers and 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (or more) syrup (nectar)
  • 1 tablespoon (or more) fresh lime juice
  • Ingredient info:
    Agave syrup is available at natural foods stores and some supermarkets.


Blend quartered strawberries in a blender until finely puréed. Transfer to a large bowl; add Hibiscus Floers and syrup, and 1 tablespoon lime juice. Season to taste, adding more lime juice and syrup, if desired.
Pour strawberry and Hibiscus mixture into a 13x9x2" metal pan and freeze until top layer begins to harden, about 2 hours. Using a fork, scrape mixture to break frozen portions into tiny pieces. Freeze for 30 minutes; scrape again. Repeat until granita resembles fluffy shaved ice, about 4 hours.

Divide among bowls. Garnish with basil leaves and diced strawberries.

A Floral Appetizer

Strain 1 jar of Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup.  Save the Syrup for some of these other fantastic recipes.  Add a dried apricot in the bottom of the hibiscus flower.
Chop some candied ginger
Add some on top.
Not leaving well enough alone, mix equal parts of cream cheese and goat cheese together and toss in some of the sweet and peppery chopped ginger.
A green Pepita on top adds the perfect touch.
Yum...a visual and tasty delight.
As they reach toward the sun, these floral buds can enliven a cheese board, salad or stand on their own as an appetizer as they transition us into the glory of summer. Bon appetit!

Wild Hibiscus Flowers got their start when founder Lee Etherington  “playfully” (read: drunkenly) dunked a wildflower into his flute of champagne and was smitten with the results.  We used prosecco, rather than champagne, but the results were similar.  As the flower rests at the bottom of the glass, the bubbles run across the surface, causing the petals to slowly unfurl.  Although it looked great, we found that using the flowers in this way didn’t really contribute any flavor to the drink, with the exception of eating the prosecco soaked flower itself.  It’s texture was similar to fruit leather; it had a flavor somewhere between raspberry and cranberry, not bad at all.  

With that in mind, we tried a second version, this time adding a splash of the syrup to our drink.  This sweetened up the dry prosecco, and turned it into a proper cocktail, with a sweet yet tart flavor that evoked thoughts of vitamin c.

Wild Hibiscus flowers certainly make for an impressive looking garnish!


Our Wild pink version of the apple-tini - playful & super smooth! Whilst lee would like to take credit for this one it was first mixed by his wife Jocelyn using some left over apple puree commissioned from 6 month old daughter Lily... Subsequent testing with normal apple puree proved that baby food gives a much smoother result on the palate for this cocktail.
2 oz vodka
3 oz apple puree (baby food is smoothest!)
1 oz wild hibiscus flower syrup
Wild Hibiscus Flower, cherry & chopstick for garnish

Stuff Wild Hibiscus Flower with cherry, skewer from side with chopstick for garnish
Shake together ingredients on ice
Strain into glass
Lay chopstick over the glass

The Forbidden fruit... the Wild Flower...
(& the skewered cherry! LOL) from the Garden of Eden - Enjoy.

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