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Hibiscus Floats: Found on the Internet

June 20th, 2013

Hibiscus Floats
Back when LiveJournal was the leading blogging platform, I didn’t quite understand the concept of being ‘found’ on the Internet. I wrote, unapologetically, about my failed romances, obnoxious lecturers, job opportunities and small indecencies. It was only when a long-time crush approached me to tell me he did not appreciate my venom-fueled posts in which I called him out by name for not reciprocating my obvious advances (sorry but not sorry about that), that I realized the Internet is a public place, and unless I put a password lock on my site, people could and would find what I was writing.

I’m not the sort to hold my tongue so inevitably, I find it hard to edit myself. I have, on many occasions, blasted something into the world that I wish I could have taken back.

There have been times when I’ve put on a brave face and written about things maturely, wisely reflecting on something I had no clue how to handle. Met with supportive accolades, I’ve felt guilty for suggesting that I even remotely had my shit together, so to speak. Those occasions have made me realize that, at my core, I am an imperfect human being, as we all are. I want to prove to myself, as much as to everyone else, that I can hang.

Hibiscus Floats

But recently, I’ve been tired. I’ve found myself wavering a bit. I’ve had a hard time keeping up. With my friends. With blogs. With cooking. With cleaning. With spending time with my family. With writing. With Mad Men. It frustrates me that I no longer make yogurt from scratch and I literally laughed when I flipped through a recent issue of Saveur, in which a number of recipes that caught my eye required upwards of three hours of prep time. I thought to myself, I finally understand those people who thought I was crazy for making my own ice cream or baking bread from scratch. But, still, I find myself wanting this time. An afternoon in my kitchen, meticulously working out a dough or finely chopping garlic is therapeutic in so many ways. It isn’t just some random hobby, it’s my creative being.

Recently, I’ve been getting this distinct feeling that time is slipping away. The cherries will be gone soon! I have yet to make a peach crisp! And, oh the zucchini bread! The peas! I glance at blogs and magazines and instantly feel behind (I am, in fact, sitting on a recipe for pumpkin muffins that has yet to make an appearance here). I keep reminding myself that this isn’t a race against time. It’s ok to slow down. It’s ok to enjoy a bagful of cherries and not feel like I must adapt and publish the latest Bon Appetit recipe before anyone else (lest I get scooped!).

But today, I’ve got a Hibiscus Float recipe that neither takes too much time, nor feels unseasonal and most importantly, aims to keep you occupied in the kitchen for no other reason than to slowly slurp down every last drop. As if time, in fact, is actually standing still.

Hibiscus Floats

Hibiscus Floats
Inspired by Ashley’s rhubarb floats; hibiscus syrup recipe adapted from West Elm

For the hibiscus syrup:
1 cup of water
1 cup of sugar
1 ounce of dried hibiscus flowers

Vanilla bean ice cream
Club soda

1. Combine the sugar and water in a small pot and simmer until the sugar is disolved. Stir in the hibiscus flowers and remove the pot from the burner. Let the flowers steep in the syrup for 5 minutes. Strain, disgarding the flowers, then transfer the syrup a glass jar with a lid and refridgerate until ready to use.
2. Add 1/4 cup of syrup to each glass. Top with a scoop of ice cream and finish with club soda. The best way to drink a float is with a straw. Preferably a striped one.

Musical Pairings: Still Corners – Strange Pleasures + Hibiscus Floats

StrangePleasures_CD_Final More on the Turntable.


  • WithStyleGrace

    I can so 100% relate to this!! I feel so behind with everything you listed. Working full time, the blog, baby and keeping up with everything else at home is a lot. maybe one day we’ll have it figured all out? ha ;)

  • Ashley

    First of all, I love the hibiscus idea. Secondly, I too find myself overwhelmed with inspiration and the “I should do this, I need to make this…” (that’s the perfectionist’s negative self-talk) to the point where I find myself doing nothing because I whirled myself into such a frantic tizzy. And then I eat cherries while standing over the sink and let the juice dribble down my face. The kids eat all the apricots before I turn them into the crumble I had planned and the rhubarb sometimes just gets chopped and thrown into the freezer for another time. But all of that is enough.
    Great post.

  • southernsouffle

    All I can say is “Preach Sista” It’s all overwhelming at times.. Trying to keep up. Especially when it comes to blogging. It’s difficult to find the time to cook something great, write something meaningful and hit publish when you have deadlines at work, kids to raise and just everything else that requires your focus. And love the hibiscus float idea. I have some dried hibiscus that I’ve been wondering what on earth to do with.. Wonderful Post!

  • http://www.kitchenkonfidence.com Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence

    The crazy times will come and go. As long as you know that your kitchen is your happy place, you’ll always find your way back in. I know I do :)

  • Megan Gordon

    O.k., so I just heard this term FOMO. Do you know it? It stands for Fear of Missing Out. When I read this, I was like “ah! That’s my life!” When its a sunny day and I’m stuck inside working on a weekend, I can’t stop thinking of everyone else out hiking, picnicking etc. Then, yes, when rhubarb comes and goes I can’t help but think, ‘damn, I didn’t do much with it this year!’ So I think it’s normal. I’m trying to get better. As Sam always says, “Don’t overthink it.” Easier said than done, I think. Miss you + have a good, restful weekend. P.S. We don’t even have kids and I can barely make a proper dinner these days let alone homemade bread or ice cream. So you’re in good company!

  • http://londonbakes.blogspot.com Kathryn

    Sometimes it’s so easy to get caught up in the race to be first and ‘on trend’ and to forget why we all started doing this in the first place. More and more, I want my blog to be a reflection of what we do and what we eat, not what I think that I should be posting. So I’m all for going at your own pace and really, properly enjoying life.

    PS I have similar livejournal stories of shame. I quickly learnt the benefit of a locked journal…

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    I think we’re all doing it, it’s just about letting go of that pressure..I hope you’re enjoying being back at work full-time. I’d love to hear about it! x

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    I have seriously been dreaming of your rhubarb floats, and I’m glad you liked my take :) Looking at your site, I’d never know you actually feel this way at times, too. Sometimes those cherries should just be….eaten and enjoyed! x

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    Thank you! It takes a lot of time to come up with the ideas, cook, photograph, and then write something about it all. The reason to cook is to enjoy and I think once in a while we all get bogged down with producing something for the sake fo keeping up vs. just enjoying it. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one!

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    Amen, Brandon! Thanks for the reminder. :)

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    I have not heard of FOMO but girl, this is EXACTLY how I feel sometimes. I can’t believe there is a term for such a thing, but it is so, so true. I miss you, too, and I hope that this summer is less crazy…and that we both have time for a lil homemade ice cream (even if it doesn’t make it onto the blogs). xo

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    Love that we both had the same Livejournal experience…to this day, I have no regrets :) I love your space, and your honesty. much love across the waters! xo

  • http://kirantarun.com/food Kiran @ KiranTarun.com

    It’s so easy to be caught up in “trends” and the feeling that you have to be in the know, everywhere. It’s a great reminder to take a step back and reevaluate why we love doing what we do :)

    Lovely and exotic flavors in this float :)

  • http://www.turntablekitchen.com Kasey

    Totally agree. Thanks, Kiran :)

  • http://www.yummysupper.blogspot.com/ erin @ yummysupper

    Kasey, I know what you mean…. I’ve been feeling media fatigue lately too. There is so much new wonderful stuff all the time that I get saturated and just need a break. But I guess that’s fine too.

    Maybe I should be sipping one of your tasty looking hibiscus floats while I read a book;) Ahhhh….
    xoxo
    E