The very first time I took Zobo drink as a young girl, i not only fell in love with it, it became my favourite local drink. You can imagine my joy, when i grew up and found out that this drink offers a wide range of health benefits. It has anti-hypertensive properties that helps reduce high blood pressure, it aids in the excretion of excess fluids from the body, it helps boost the immune system and also contains anti-inflammatory and mild antibacterial properties which can serve as supplement in treating cold and cough. The addition of fruits and vegetables such as pineapple, oranges, ginger and garlic helps amplify its flavour and aroma and makes it a super healthy drink that can be consumed anywhere, anytime, any day.
4 cups zobo leaves
1 large, and very ripe pineapple
4 garlic cloves
2 inch ginger root
3 sweet oranges
2 tbs cloves (konofuru spice)
Handful mint leaves (optional)
A lot of sand is usually found in the zobo leaves therefore, it is important that you get them all out. Put zobo leaves in a bowl and run under cold tap water; rinse thoroughly and remove from water, placing in a colander. At this point, you will notice that a lot of juice is seeping out of the leaves. Fear not! The leaves will produce more than enough juice for you.
In a large pot, pour the zobo leaves and add about 4 litres or more of water, depending on your desired consistency. Set on medium-low heat.
Wash pineapple thoroughly to get rid of dirt, peel off the skin, slice the flesh into large chunks and place in the pot.
Squeeze in the juice from the orange into the pot.
Thinly chop the garlic and ginger and place in the pot.
Grind the cloves (local spice) using a dry mill or a mortar and pestle. Add blended spice into the pot.
If you are using mint leaves, now is the time to add it.
Cover pot and leave to simmer on medium-low heat for 45mins.
After simmering, turn off heat and leave to sit for 3-4 hours or longer; the longer the better. If possible, leave to refrigerate overnight.
Strain zobo with fine sieve; squelch the leaves in order to extract as much juice as you can.
After straining out the juice, I noticed that mine was a little thicker than expected, so I had to dilute with an extra cup of water.
You can sweeten this drink with artificial sweeteners, but it is best consumed without the sweeteners so as to fully reap all the health benefits this fine liquid has to offer.
Store in a glass jug or plastic bottle and leave to refrigerate for an hour or two. This drink is best served cold!