Sobolo is popular in Ghana. It is made from the Roselle leaf, the roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa) is a species of Hibiscus native to the Old World tropics.
Sobolo has a unique taste that makes it pleasurable to all classes of people. In Ghana, Senegal & Nigeria, sobolo is served cold, while it’s served warm in Egypt. It is a sharp tasting herbal infusion taken as tea or juice. The flower is also used in making wine, juice, tea and spices. It can also be used in preparing raw salad. Serve chilled with snacks.
In Africa, organic teas are widely used as herbal supplements to promote generally great health. One of the most popular teas is known as hibiscus tea. I the western world,Bissap Tea. It is an ideal drink that gives you energy and strength. In Ghana we affectionately call it SOBOLO.
Sobolo has been used in modern culture as a mild yet natural diuretic. Dieters and people with kidney problems often turn to the natural and beneficial properties of the hibiscus flower, because of its Vitamin C and mineral content, and as a diuretic.
In fact, there are a huge number of claims made for Sobolo’s therapeutic benefits, from Ayurvedic menstrual remedies to hangover cures and treatments for cancer.
As well as its popular appeal as a beverage, Sobolo is clearly regarded as a health drink in many cultures. In the countries of origin, the flowers have been, or still are used as an antiseptic, aphrodisiac, astringent, cholagogue, demulcent, digestive, diuretic,emollient,laxative, cooler, sedative, and tonic! In Chinese folk medicine, they are used to treat liver disorders and high blood pressure. In East Africa, the infuse Sobolo drink called “Sudan tea”, is taken to relieve coughs.
Fortunately, extracts of Sobolo (Bissap) have also been the subject of hundreds of scientific studies, some of these attracting attentions from the British media.
Julia Morton Collectanea, University of Miami (a research and information center devoted to economic botany) states that nutritionists analyzed the calyces of Roselle (another name for Bissap) sold in Guatemalan markets and found them to be high in calcium, niacin, riboflavin and iron. A better appreciation of this analysis could be found the book “Fruits of Warm Climate”
Recently, studies have shown that the anti-oxidants within the hibiscus flower have proven to decrease cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease. In a 2008 USDA study, consuming sobolo tea lowers blood pressure in a group of pre-hypertensive and mildly hypertensive adults. Three cups of tea daily resulted in an average drop of 8.1 points in their systolic blood pressure, compared to 1.3point drop in the volunteers who drank the placebo beverage. Study also shows participants with higher blood pressure readings (129 0r above) had a greater response to hibiscus tea; their systolic blood pressure went down by 13.2points. These data support the idea that drinking hibiscus tea in an amount readily incorporated into the diet may play a significant role in controlling blood pressure.
A number of articles and websites recommend drinking hibiscus tea to assist in weight loss. Studies show that Hibiscus tea contains an enzyme inhibitor which blocks production of amylase-an enzyme that breaks down complex sugars and starches. So it may be possible that drinking a cup of hibiscus tea after meals (as part of a controlled weight loss programme) could reduce the absorption of dietary carbohydrates and assist in weight loss. A study by the University of Veracruz, Mexico using Hibiscus extract concluded that components of the extract used in the experiment could be considered as possible anti-obesity agents.
To all, I implore you to promote the consumption of healthy foods such as Sobolo, Moringa, and Dandelon.
With its ruby red colour, garnished by ginger, onion and natural flavours, it gives you a smile inside. SOBOLO is better than Champagne!!!
3 cups of dried hibiscus leaf
3 cups of sugar
3 cups of boiling water (for the sugar syrup)
5 litres of boiling water (for the brewing of the leaves)
You’d need a sieve, two big bowls. And some cups to drink it in!
Pour the leaves into a big bowl
Pour in a boiling water
Let it sit for about an hour or more
Let it sit for about an hour or more (cover it while it brews)
Make a sugar syrup from sugar and boiling water then stir
Pour together the syrup and sobolo juice.
Add 2 tablespoon of liquid vanilla
Cut up some apples (or watermelons), orange rind slices into the sobolo to garnish it. You may also use cucumber.
In short, cut up any fruit or veggies inside that you feel comfortable with, especially citrus (for extra flavour).
You have absolutely nothing to lose but so much to gain for taking a chilled glass of sobolo. So, instead of buying those cartons of fruit juice, why don’t you make this easy drink? Its just like making tea! And it taste superb too.