Monday, September 14, 2015

Sekanjabin - Persian Mint Drink

Sekanjabin is another popular drink that can be found at events. It is simple and easy to make. This is another recipe from "An Anonymous Andalusian cookbook of the 13th Century" as translated by David Friedman.

Syrup of Simple Sikanjabîn (Oxymel)
Take a ratl of strong vinegar and mix it with two ratls of sugar, and cook all this until it takes the form of a syrup. Drink an ûqiya of this with three of hot water when fasting: it is beneficial for fevers of jaundice, and calms jaundice and cuts the thirst, since sikanjabîn syrup is beneficial in phlegmatic fevers: make it with six ûqiyas of sour vinegar for a ratl of honey and it is admirable.

...[gap: top third of this page has been cut off]...

... and a ratl of sugar; cook all this until it takes the consistency of syrup. Its benefit is to relax the bowels and cut the thirst and vomiting, and it is beneficial in bilious fevers (Friedman, 2000).

Sekanjabin Recipe (Courtesy of David Friedman)

Dissolve 4 cups sugar in 2 1/2 cups of water; when it comes to a boil add 1 cup wine vinegar. Simmer 1/2 hour. Add a handful of mint, remove from fire, let cool. Dilute the resulting syrup to taste with ice water (5 to 10 parts water to 1 part syrup). The syrup stores without refrigeration.

Sekanjabin refers to the "family" of drinks made with vinegar, sugar and water (Meade, 2002).  I prefer to use red wine vinegar as the base of my drink.  I have also used flavored vinegars and omitted the mint.  I prefer a stronger drink, so I usually dilute 5:1 ratio of water to syrup.  

Works Cited 

Friedman, D. (2000, September 4). Chapter One: On Drinks. Retrieved 14 2015, September, from An Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook of the 13th Century: http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Medieval/Cookbooks/Andalusian/andalusian10.htm#Heading506

Meade, R. H. (2002, October 25). Non-Alcoholic Beverages of the Middle Ages. Retrieved September 14, 2015, from Medieval Brewers Homepage: http://mbhp.forgottensea.org/noalcohol.html#_ftnref5