Delicious Refreshing mint and cucumber cooler made with homemade sugar-vinegar and mint syrup.
In Kerala (South India) during hot summer days we used to drink lemonade with syrup made of an herb Nannari/Sarasaparilla. So when I came to know about Sekanjabin, which is one of the oldest sweet and sour syrups from Iran, dating back to 10th century, I decided to try it. It’s a combination of vinegar (serkeh) and “angabin,” which refers to honey. Sekanjabin used to make a drink called sharbat-e sekanjabin are usually served during the summer.
Sekanjabin is Persian beverage syrup made of vinegar and honey (or sugar) and is an impression more than a specific recipe. In the 10th Century a physician named Ibn Sina (or Avicenna) wrote a Canon of Medicine which listed the medicinal benefits of sekanjabin. When writing his encyclopedia in the 12th Century, royal physician Ismail Al-Jurjani described the types of “sharbat”, or syrups, popular in Persia. In this book he wrote about the beneficial properties that ease indigestion and other “body imbalances”. These same types of syrups are presented again in the Manuscrito Anonimo, an Arabic Cookbook of 13thCentury Andalusia.
I also read that, Skanjabin is used as a dipping sauce for crisp lettuce leaves a healthy, refreshing snack that can cool off on a hot day. I came to know about this recipe from a book edible Houston. This recipe is using 2 pound of sugar which is not possible for me to use. Secondly I didn’t know how it going to taste and nobody in the house will drink it every day. So I decided to reduce the serving and made only 5 serving recipe. I also used white wine vinegar and cucumber, the seedless variety.
I made the skanjabin syrup with sugar and homegrown mint. Yes my mint is growing nicely now but when the sun is at peak they may slow down. Then I made the sharbat-e-sekanjabin. The grated cucumber on this recipe did wonders to the ice filled water and got an extra kick with grated cucumber. During every sip you get a nice little crunch with cucumber. This gave me an idea of try cucumber –mint Popsicle with coconut milk I will let you know once I got success with that recipe
Give a try to this ancient beverage working it wonders even in 21st century. You will love it. Here comes the recipe.
Delicious Mint Vinegar syrup with cucumber ice cubes a refreshing drink for a hot summer day.
- For making Sekanjabin/ Mint sugar syrup
- ¼ cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- For making sharbat-e Sekanjabin/Mint and cucumber cooler
- 2 tablespoon Sekanjabin
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup ice
- 3 tablespoon grated cucumber
- 2 lemon slice
- 1 sprig mint.
For making syrup
In a small sauce pot add hot water and sugar and mix sugar and water for 1 minute or until thickened.
Add vinegar and continue to mix until the sugar fully dissolved and the mixture starts boils again.
Add the mint and let the mixture boil for 10 minutes or until the syrup has thickened and feels sticky
For making sharbat-e Sekanjabin/Mint and cucumber cooler
For traditional recipe you need to add 1 parts of syrup with 5 parts of water.
I made one drink like this 2 tablespoon of syrup with ½ cup water and ¼ cup ice and then added grated cucumber and garnish with two slice of lime and mint.
First make the syrup using sugar and water
Once sugar dissolved add vinegar and continue to boil.
Then add mint and comtinue to boil until the syrup thickens
For making Sharbat/drink
In a glass add two tablespoon of syrup,
Then add water and ice
Top with grated cucumber and lime slices and fresh mint. Enjoy
If you want to make it adult drink add dash of vodka .
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This is Swathi ( Ambujom Saraswathy) from Zesty South Indian Kitchen who loves to explore cuisines from all over the world. Whenever possible I try to to give an Indian touch to several of the world cuisine, and has weakness for freshly baked bread. All the recipes you see here are created by me and approved after taste-test by my family.