Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Homemade Roselle Syrup (洛神花糖浆)

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Instead of prepare Roselle syrup with water, adding some lemon juice is nice too ^^ 

I have been making roselle syrup for many times. Every batch is different in terms of syrup concentration. These vary due to vary ratio amount of roselle calyx, sugar and water used. After testing and tasted I decide to stick to this ratio:-

Roselle calyx: Sugar: Water 1:3:5
Example 200g calyx; 600g sugar (combo of rock and castor sugar); 1L water

For own consume I usually process ½ kg roselle (weight about 200g roselle calyx) but for this time I process up to 2kg roselle (weight about 1.2kg calyx). This amount gives about 6L of concentrated roselle syrup. This syrup is meant to serve the crowd for the coming Wesak Family Day celebration in Tusita Hermitage (兜率天修行林). Apart sampling roselle drinks and jam, you and family are welcome to visit Tusita’s various sites and exhibition booths. There will also having blood donation drive and free Chinese physician consultation. Kindly refer here for the address and map of Tusita Hermitage location.

My 3 years old girl standing next to the big glass bottle. 
Thanks to neighbour, Mrs Lau for lending me her big glass container which help my roselle syrup making a lot easier.

washed roselle calyx

Blanched calyx

Do not blanch calyx till wilt. We do not want cloudy syrup. 
After blanching all the calyx, off the heat. Add in brown rock sugar and dried orange skin. Stir to mix and leave aside to cool.
 After all the syrup has cool we can start making the Roselle syrup.

Add in blanched calyx inside the bottle

Pour in lemon juice
Add in the blanched rock sugar and dried orange zest syrup

It is alright if some of the rock sugar is not dissolve completely. 

Add in clear syrup

Press down the calyx to get even soaking 

Covered and leave at room temperature for a day
 The next day...
Remove the soaked calyx from the syrup and keep these for jam making

Simmer the syrup to boilling point and keep inside glass bottle. Keep in fridge for longer shelf life
Homemade Roselle Syrup (洛神花糖浆)
yield about 6L Concentrated Roselle Syrup
Ingredients :
2.4kg sugar
4L+2L of water (all we need 6L water)

1.2kg fresh roselle calyx (weight after separate from the central seedpod. Refer here on how to remove the seedpod)
1.2kg brown rock sugar

Handful of dried orange skin (橙皮)
Juice from 3 lemons

Methods :
1. Soak the red fleshy calyx for about 10-15 minutes. Wash by rubbing along the calyx with fingers. We do not want any small creature web or nest inside our syrup. Try NOT to tear the calyx as we need to blanch each roselle calyx in next stage.

2. Prepare syrup. Bring a pot of 4L water to boiling point. Add in all the sugar and cook till all dissolve. Leave to cool completely.

3. While waiting the syrup to cool blanch the roselle calyx. Bring a pot of 2L water to rapid boil. Blanching roselle by add in few calyx at a time (about 5-6pcs). It takes only 3-5 seconds for the blanching. Dish out with scoop and place one side. Repeat till all finish. Leave to cool completely.
*DO NOT blanch till roselle calyx wilted. We want clear syrup not cloudy syrup.

4. Once finish blanching roselle calyx OFF the heat. Add in dried orange skin and brown rock sugar into the blanched water. Stir occasionally for the sugar to dissolve. Leave aside to cool completely.
*Do not worry if the rock sugar still not dissolve after cool completely. It will during the pickling process.

5. Assembling stage. Make sure all the ingredients cool completely. Start by add in blanched roselle calyx into sterilized bottle. Follow by lemon juice, rock sugar syrup and lastly clear syrup. Slightly press roselle calyx to get even soaking into syrup. Cover and leave at room temperature for 1 day.
*For small bottle can keep in fridge for another 1-2 days

6. Separate roselle calyx and dried orange skin from the syrup. Keep the calyx and process into jam. Refer here on how to make roselle jam. Remember to add sugar in jam making.
*For this batch I add another 500g sugar

7. Simmer the roselle syrup to boiling point. Off the heat and the syrup is ready to be filled into sterilized glass bottle. Leave the bottle to cool completely and store in fridge for longer self-life.

*****Note: Updated on Nov 2014*********
I found that below ratio work better and give more concerntrate syrup
Roselle calyx: Sugar: Water 1:3:3
Example 200g calyx; 600g sugar (combo of rock and castor sugar); 600ml water


  1. Vivian, you bought such a big glass bottle!!!!! :)

  2. truly, i am so intrigued by this.. just that we can't get this here....

  3. Back in the Caribbean we add cinnamon sticks and a couple cloves to give it a more complex flavor. This is a Christmas drink

  4. Wow, Viv!

    That's a big jar of syrup that you made!!!


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