February 24, 2024

In Jamaica, Christmas wouldn’t be the same without a sorrel drink and Christmas cake. Both have rum in them … yes, we like our rum during the holidays! The sorrel flower is in full bloom at Christmastime in Jamaica so that’s one of the reasons it’s a traditional holiday favourite. It has a deep red colour and unique flavour enhanced with spices, lemon juice and rum. You can omit the rum, but I personally think it tastes better with it. For this recipe you can use fresh or dried sorrel. I use dried sorrel, which is easier to find where I live. If you’re lucky enough to find fresh sorrel just double the amount you use for this recipe.

Ingredients for this Sorrel Drink

2 ½ cups dried sorrel
3 oz fresh ginger, grated
5 pimento berries
10 cups boiling water
2 cups sugar
2 Tbsp lemon juice
¾ cup white rum

Makes 10 cups


1. Place sorrel, ginger and pimento berries in a large pot or mixing bowl
2. Pour boiling water over the ingredients; stir and place in fridge overnight to steep
3. Using a large strainer, pour the steeped liquid into another container; use a spoon to squeeze more liquid out of the sorrel
4. Add sugar, lemon juice and rum to sorrel and stir until sugar has dissolved

Enjoy over ice

Tip: To prevent if from fermenting, store sorrel drink in the fridge or cold cellar.

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I’ve been cooking Jamaican food for my family for more than 50 years! Now I'm teaching my daughter Angela and you how to cook my treasured family recipes! I'm happy to be of service and love hearing from you so don't forget to leave a comment below.


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