Hibiscus Grenadine Recipe

Hibiscus Grenadine Recipe

If you've never had homemade grenadine, you're in for a treat. Unlike the commercial stuff, which is little more than corn syrup and food coloring, this homemade grenadine uses real pomegranates and dried hibiscus flowers. If you can't buy fresh pomegranates, bottled not-from-concentrate juice (such as POM) can be substituted. The hibiscus and pomegranate juice give this grenadine and deep, garnet red that will give any drink a brilliant crimson hue.

Hibiscus "flowers" are actually the fleshy red calyx that remains after the petals fall off. The fruit, with its fuzzy black seeds, is usually removed from the calyx before drying.

Hibiscus Grenadine

1 cup water

1 cup sugar (white or light-colored sugar gives the best color, brown sugar mutes the bright red color)

2 cups of pomegranate arils (two medium or one giant pomegranate) or one cup of pomegranate juice

1/2 cup of whole dried hibiscus flower or 1/4 cup of dried cut and sifted hibiscus flowers (do not use candied flowers)

Combine water and sugar in a two-quart or larger saucepan and heat on medium. Stir until sugar is dissolved, then add pomegranate arils and hibiscus.  Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and use the back of a large spoon or a flat potato masher to crush the arils. Cover and let steep for one hour. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and then through a paper coffee filter or jelly bag. Bottle and keep refrigerated for up to two weeks.

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