There is simply no shortage of creative and pleasing beverage choices in Persian cuisine!
In this refreshing drink, cantaloupe is instantaneously elevated with a splash of rosewater syrup and crushed ice, making an irresistible treat for hot summer days.
Persian culture has a deeply-rooted and rich tradition (mehmoon navazi in Farsi) of offering various treats to our guests. In summertime, these will inevitably include the “cooling” beverages such as Sharbat and Paloudeh.
For me, nothing stirs childhood nostalgia more than memories of chilled flavorful Sharbat on a hot summer day in Tehran!
Sharbat is a Farsi word that describes a style of chilled beverage with a pretty spectacular range of flavors, colors, and ingredients. Arriving guests are often greeted with a decorative glass of chilled Sharbat. Various fruits, nuts, pastries, and hot black tea follow Sharbat as part of an elaborate Persian hospitality ritual (Mehmoon Navazi in Farsi).
Before there was sugary and processed soda (can you even remember that time?!) there was sharbat in Iran. Sharbat is a homemade beverage that has 3 main components: acid, sweetener, and flavor. For the acid, citrus juice or vinegar is used to bring forward the tartness element; typically honey, sugar, or grape molasses is used for the sweetener. As in all of Persian cuisine, flavor choices are endless, ranging from fresh herbs to rose water/orange blossom water to preserved fruits.