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Hibiscus Tea

Hibiscus Tea

5" x 4", .8 oz.
Dried Hibiscus
COLOMBIA

There is something about drinking hibiscus tea that always reminds me of the feeling I got from Jell-O when I was a kid. It's the bright red color, one of those lovely things in the world that is so saturated, but totally transparent as well. I remember making Jell-O when I was young and being fascinated by the colors in the bowl. I always wanted to stick my hand into the liquid to join with the mixed-berry red or the orange-orange jello. But when the opportunity presented itself, the Jell-O was super hot. When it cooled down, it became solid which was interesting, but not the same visual sensation. Hibiscus tea reminds me of that sensation. Like wearing really deeply saturated rose-colored glasses or looking at the world through a blue lightbulb or a transparent colored film on a movie set. I find with the injection of this type of color one quite easily is one-step removed from reality. I have never been to Colombia, but my friend Chris went this spring. He told me that hibiscus tea is quite common in many parts of the world, not only Colombia. There, they drink it cold, storing it in pitchers in the fridge. He said I would like the Cambodian version as they add lime juice to the tea which makes the red even brighter and that in Jamaica they drink it at Christmas with rum or wine. A study in 2008 by the USDA showed consuming 3 cups of hibiscus tea a day lowers your blood pressure. That is good news.