My friend Anca is the finest of hostesses. When she received our Italian conversation group, one of the appetizers she served elicited a lot of intrigue and delight. It was a small little amuse-gueule, with a star-like shape which held a tiny ball of goat cheese. Anca revealed it was a hibiscus flower imported from Australia, (available on Amazon), sold in a simple syrup. I promptly ordered a jar and served them on a cheese platter at a dinner I hosted. No one could guess what they were but we had fun trying!
Because the hibiscus flowers are packed thightly, I found it was best to turn them upside down on a paper towel to “open” the flowers and drain off the syrup, before stuffing them. I used less than half a teaspoon of herbed chèvre rolled in my hand to form a ball of the right size to stuff each flower. A single chive across the top finished this easy appetizer sure to be a conversation starter at your next party!
The flowers fancy up a champagne cocktail in the most beautiful way. Simply drop a bloom in the bottom of the glass along with a tablespoon of the syrup they are sold in, and top with champagne. A very pretty pale pink cocktail that is also delicious. Cheers!