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jalabs-msg - 4/22/08

 

Jalabs are period drinks based on a honey and water or sugar and water syrup base. The often mentioned Sekanjabin drink is a jalab using mint and vinegar as flavorings.

 

NOTE: See also the files: herbs-msg, root-veg-msg, sugar-msg, beverages-msg, beer-msg, wine-msg, brewing-msg, cider-msg, mead-msg.

 

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NOTICE -

 

This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.

 

This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org

 

I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were removed to save space and remove clutter.

 

The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given by the individual authors.

 

Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear at this time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give credit to the originator(s).

 

Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org

************************************************************************

 

From: rhe6 at tank.uchicago.edu (mindy miriam rheingold)

Date: 17 Feb 90 04:17:00 GMT

Organization: University of Chicago

 

In a recent posting, Cariodoc mentions several Islamic drink recipes

made by boiling fruit juice with sugar or honey and mixing the

resulting syrup with water.

 

One of these recipes uses lemon juice and sugar and is the closest

thing to a "modern" tasting drink that we have, though it does not

taste exactly like modern lemonade.  It is a good recipe to use if

you want to be in period but are feeding folk who are hesitant

about trying new (or in this case, old) or different foods. It is

quite refreshing, especially when served cold, though some people

prefer it hot.

 

Madeleine des MillesRoses

Grey Gargoyles

(Mindy M. Rheingold)

 

 

From: justin at INMET.INMET.COM (Justin du Coeur MKA Mark Waks)

Date: 22 Aug 90 22:08:43 GMT

 

Re: Drinks to try

Those interested in something a little different (debatably period -- someone

who knows the sources better than I might be able to give a better opinion of

how much so) should try experimenting with some relatively normal spices in

sekanjabin. One local favorite (introduced by Mussttafa) is to make Cariadoc's

standard recipe, but substitute a large handful of minced or crushed ginger

for the mint. Very tangy, and quite tasty. My personal favorite is to toss in

one or two dozen cinnamon sticks, and let it steep overnight. The sweetness of

the sekanjabin goes very well with the cinnamon flavor...

 

                                -- Justin du Coeur

 

 

From: ddfr at quads.uchicago.edu (david director friedman)

Date: 23 Aug 90 03:37:26 GMT

Organization: University of Chicago

 

Sekanjabin is not a generic term for flavored syrups diluted in water

to be used as drinks--it is the name of one such. The Manuscrito

Anonimo translated into Spanish by Ambrosio Huici-Miranda (13th

century Andalusian) contains a whole chapter of such drinks, with a

wide range of flavoring.

 

David Friedman

DDFR at Midway.UChicago.Edu

 

 

From: bloch at thor.ucsd.edu (Steve Bloch)

Date: 4 Jan 91 01:53:52 GMT

 

sinister at ac.dal.ca (Corman) writes:

>   At the last event which I had the opertunity to attend, I was treated to a

>delightful drink called sekanjabin (sp?)....

>I was hoping someone could post here-on how its recipe.

 

Several recipes appear in Cariadoc's _Miscellany_, which I have not

before me.  One is taken from Claudia Roden's book of Middle-Eastern

cookery (in print, not too hard to find), and calls for water,

vinegar, sugar, and mint.  There are also one or two 13th-century

Andalusian recipes quoted there, omitting the mint (which is so

essential to the flavor as most of us are accustomed to it that

leaving it out borders on heresy.  And the mint IS documentable to the

10th century or so, just not with enough specificity to make a

recipe.)

 

I have tried these recipes, fiddled with them, and much prefer the

following, which uses honey rather than sugar:

 

Dissolve 1-1/2 cups of honey in 1 cup of water.  Bring to a boil, then

add 1/2 cup of vinegar and simmer for half an hour or more.  After

removing from the heat, add a good-sized handful of mint leaves.  Let

stand until you want to drink it (I have no idea how long it takes for

the mint to express!), at which time the mint should be strained out

and the syrup diluted by about 7 times as much water (10 is for

wimps).  Delicious either hot (while shivering around a campfire) or

cool (at a feast, or coming off the battlefield).  And the syrup

keeps unrefrigerated for months, because of the vinegar.

 

The honey should have some flavor (clover is for wimps) but not too

much (desert sage honey completely overwhelms the mint, and the

drinker).  Likewise the vinegar: white vinegar will simply be sour,

balsamic would be weird, and either cider or wine is ideal.  You can

use dried mint, but fresh is much better, and you probably have some

growing as a weed in your back yard.

 

Note: I used to add the mint at the same time as the vinegar, before

simmering, and was chastised for this insensitivity by an Iraqi

gentleman to whom I served it ("Very good, but the spices aren't

right.  He burned the mint.")

 

Note also: various people of this Barony have discovered sekanjabin

syrup (a sugar version) for sale in 24-ounce bottles in Middle-

Eastern grocery stores.

 

As Cariadoc will no doubt point out, sekanjabin is merely the most

popular (in the SCA) of dozens or hundreds of similar drinks from al-Andalus.  Others call for lemon, or pomegranate, or a variety of

roots and herbs, and I have made an excellent drink syrup from

rhubarb (but cannot document it).

--

Stephen Bloch

Joshua ibn-Eleazar ha-Shalib

>sca>Caid>Calafia>St.Artemas

bloch at cs.ucsd.edu

 

                  

Date: 14 May 92

From: ddfr at quads.uchicago.edu (david director friedman)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Organization: University of Chicago Computing Organizations

 

           Sekanjabin

 

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.

 

This recipe is based on a modern source:  A Book of Middle Eastern

Food, by Claudia Roden. Sekanjabin is a period drink; it is mentioned

in the Fihrist  of al-Nadim, which was written in the tenth century.

The only period recipe I have found for it (in the Andalusian

cookbook) is called "Sekanjabin Simple" and omits the mint. It is one

of a large variety of similar drinks described in that

cookbook of flavored syrups intended to be diluted in either hot or cold

water before drinking.

 

This is the period recipe--it appears to be two recipes with some

bits missing:

 

Syrup of Simple Sakanyabin

 

Take a pound of strong vinegar and mix it with two pounds of sugar,

and cook all this until it takes the form of a syrup. Drink an ounce

of this with three of hot water when fasting: it is beneficial for

fevers of jaundice, and calms jaundice and cuts the thirst, since

sakanyabin syrup is beneficial in phlegmatic fevers: make it with six

ounce of sour vinegar for a pound of honey and it is admirable ...

and a pound of sugar; cook all this until it takes the form of a

drink.  Its benefit is to relax the bowels and cut the thirst and

vomit, and it is beneficial in yellow fevers.

 

Cariadoc/David

 

 

From: jtn at nutter.cs.vt.edu (Terry Nutter)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Sekanjabin

Date: 5 Dec 1993 22:48:20 GMT

 

Greetings, all, from Angharad ver' Rhuawn.

 

Cara asks,

>Could someone please either post or e-mail me a recipe using

>fresh mint leaves?  I have been planting mint in various corners

>of my garden and expect to have enough to harvest next summer.

 

4 cups sugar

2 1/2 cups water

1 cup vinegar

handfull of fresh mint

 

Dissolve the sugar in the water.  (Yes, four cups of sugar _will_

dissolve in two and a half cups of water.)  Bring to a boil. Add

vinegar.  Turn down to a simmer; let simmer for about twenty to

thirty minutes.  Remover from heat.  Toss in mint leaves. Let

cool.  When it is completely cool, remove the mint leaves and bottle

the syrup.  To drink, mix syrup with water to taste (for most people,

one part of syrup to anywhere between five and ten parts of water).

 

You can use either white or red wine vinegar or cider vinegar; I

prefer red wine, but that's purely personal.  I've never seen much

success with flavored vinegars.  _Don't_ use distilled (white)

vinegar; it's nasty.

 

The amount of mint does not greatly matter.  I usually go out to

the mint patch and cut off sprigs until I'm bored, which happens

quickly B^}.

 

This recipe originated in Claudia Rodin's Middle Eastern cookbook,

and appears in Cariadoc's miscellany.

 

Cheers,

-- Angharad/Terry

 

 

From: jtn at nutter.cs.vt.edu (Terry Nutter)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Mint/vinegar tea?

Date: 8 Jan 1994 21:07:10 GMT

Organization: The Rialto

 

Greetings, all, from Angharad ver' Rhuawn.

 

Godfrey asks,

 

>A friend of mine encountered a mint and vinegar tea at one of the taverns

>at Pennsic one year.  Does anyone know where I could find the recipe for

>such a tea?  (She's throwing a party at the end of January and would like

>to serve this tea there.)

 

What you are referring to is probably sekanjabin.  The recipe in general

use is from Claudia Rodin's Middle Eastern cookbook (and can be found in

Cariadoc's Miscellany).  Directions follow.

 

4 cups sugar

2 1/2 cups water

1 cup vinegar

handfull of fresh mint

 

Dissolve sugar in water (yes, four cups of sugar _will_ dissolve in 2.5

cups of water).  Bring to a boil.  Add vinegar.  Reduce heat and simmer

about 20-25 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Add mint and let stand.  When

cool, discard mint and bottle.  The resulting syrup keeps pretty much

indefinitely at room temperature.  To serve, dilute with water to taste.  

Most people like between five and ten parts of water to one part of syrup.

 

You can use just about any vinegar except white distilled vinegar; I prefer

red or white wine vinegar.  You can use just about any fresh mint.  If

fresh mint is not available, you can use mint tea bags, but be sure that

you use the 100% mint kind, not mint-flavored tea.  When I use the tea

bags, I usually throw in a handful (anywhere up to a dozen).  You can

also use loose dried mint, of course, but it's harder to filter out of the

syrup, and doesn't particularly improve with again.

 

Some people use honey instead of sugar.  I'm less fond of that.

 

It's good hot as well as cold (hot sekanjabin is particularly wonderful for

people with head colds).

 

Enjoy!

-- Angharad/Terry

 

 

From: salley at niktow.canisius.edu (David Salley)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Mint/vinegar tea?

Date: 18 Jan 94 00:07:32 GMT

Organization: Canisius College, Buffalo NY. 14208

 

Just to give you an idea how long Sekanjaben "keeps", I was cleaning out the

cupboards and came across a bottle a quarter full of Sekanjaben that Cariadoc

had given me ... eight years ago!  Naturally, I tried it out.  Still delicious!

 

                                                       - Dagonell

 

SCA Persona : Lord Dagonell Collingwood of Emerald Lake, CSC, CK, CTr

Habitat           : East Kingdom, AEthelmearc Principality, Rhydderich Hael Barony

Internet    : salley at niktow.cs.canisius.edu

USnail-net  : David P. Salley, 136 Shepard Street, Buffalo, New York 14212-2029

 

 

From: DEW at ECL.PSU.EDU (Durr ishJabal Bey alFarengi)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Frequent Complaint heard at Pennsic

Date: 1 Sep 1994 02:46:20 GMT

Organization: Orluk Oasis

 

Greetings to the Rialto (and all the viking ships in the Fjord)!

 

I serve sekanjabin frequently at Pennsic (just cause), and when someone

declines it (which occurrs), I explain what it is.  Some still resist, saying

that they have tried it before and it "tastes funny" or "vinegary".

 

However, I can usually get them to sample mine, and their opinion is always

reversed (at least so far).

 

What may be the problem in many cases is the type or proportion of ingredients

that make the difference.  May I offer my recipe for your consideration:

 

(This makes a syrup that I cut 1:8 or 1:15 with water, including Pennsic water

for those who are still scared by false rumors.)

 

4 cups sukkar (sugar)  and  2.5 cups water

 

Bring these to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.

 

Then add 1 cup RED WINE VINEGAR (and use the good stuff!). Remove from heat.

 

Crush FRESH LEMON BALM (a mint) and steep in the hot solution until the

mint is completely wilted.  Remove and replace with more (I use as much as I

can, usually a bunch as big as my head).

 

Lemon Balm is a perrenial and may be obtained from most garden stores.  It

grows like a weed.

 

Like most things, the better grade ingredients produce better results.

 

One other simple suggestion for hospitality:  Peel and segment oranges.  

Sprinkle lightly with ORANGE BLOSSOM WATER (or rose water) and cinnamon.  

Makes a nice, light snack (and will keep without refrigeration if you just

cover it with cheesecloth).  I know that dancers just devour these things

(loads of fructose, electrolytes, and other goodies).

 

Your Servant,

Durr ishJabal

 

Dale E. Walter     |(Smokey) Baron Dur of Hidden Mountain         

                   |Durr ishJabal min al-Maqfi Jabal abu Neefa Sultan ilorluk

dew at ecl.psu.edu    |Orluk Oasis on the War Road (of Aethelmarc)

                   |Member # 02933

 

 

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

From: ddfr at quads.uchicago.edu (david director friedman)

Subject: Re: Pomegranate Wine?

Organization: University of Chicago

Date: Sat, 12 Nov 1994 20:16:10 GMT

 

I don't know about wine, but a 13th c. Andalusian cookbook has a

recipe for a pomegranate drink:

---

Syrup of Pomegranates

 

Take a ratl of sour pomegranates and another of sweet pomegranates,

and add their juice to two ratls of sugar, cook all this until it

takes the consistency of syrup, and keep until needed. Its benefits:

it is useful for fevers, and cuts the thirst, it benefits bilious

fevers and lightens the body gently.

---

I presume that this syrup, like others in the chapter, is intended to

be diluted with hot or cold water when needed. We dilute it with hot

water to make a nice sweet, hot drink.

 

David/Cariadoc

 

 

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

From: chris at aquasoft.com.au (Chris Robertson)

Subject: Re: Question about period food

Organization: Griffon Consulting (c/- Aquasoft P/L)

Date: Thu, 9 Feb 1995 09:16:53 GMT

 

Suze.Hammond at f56.n105.z1.fidonet.org (Suze Hammond) writes:

>BTW, could somebody please post a decent recipe for senkjabin?

>

>A friend in Meridies tells me it's practically unknown there, and he

>misses it.

>

>... Moreach

 

This is an article posted by Countess Arastorm the Golden several years ago,

which I carefully saved.  The cordials are all good;  I find I personally

don't like the switchel, but some of you well may.  At the end I have added

a recipe for rose cordial which is from a modern cookbook (I can find out

which if anyone really wants to know), but is probably essentially unchanged

from medieval times, as it's very simple. (Rose cordial is great if you like

the rose taste.  It's sweeter than sekanjabin.)

 

Both rose and sekanjabin are good hot as well as cold, and the concentrated

syrup keeps for months unrefrigerated. The rose cordial will get "fluffy bits"

in it which look as though it's growing mould -- this is just sugar

crystalising around the flecks of lemon flesh.  Don't worry about it, it's

still good to use.  Refrigerate diluted cordial, though, and use it within

a week or so.

 

> From: storm at hlafdig.stonemarche.ORG (Arastorm the Golden)

> Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

> Subject: Sekanjabin Recipes

> Date: 18 Jul 91 00:04:31 GMT

>

> SEKANJABIN -- (this is probably almost, if not exactly,

> what Cariadoc gives for a mint drink recipe)

> This first version is scaled for feasts, or for making a lot

> to take to the war. Once mixed it makes about 120 cups. I made

> this particular adaptation because the common brand of red wine

> vinegar near us comes in 40 oz bottles.

>      Simmer:  about 5 cups of red wine vinegar

>              10 pounds of sugar

>              3 quarts of water          for 20 minutes

> Let cool and steep 1/2 oz of mint leaves in it while it cools.

> Strain and serve diluted with 12 parts water to one part syrup.

>

> It is a beautiful pale red and makes a pale pink drink. In some

> shires it is traditionally flecked with the ground mint leaves,

> in others they are careful that there is no hint of leaves in it.

> I have also tasted it with white wine vinegar, and cider vinegar.

> I prefer the original.

>

> (A more normal size batch requires 1/2 cup of red wine vinegar,

> 2 cups of sugar, 1 1/4 water, and a few sprigs of mint.)

>

> Now for the alternatives I told you about.

>

> My favorite: Lime Ginger

>      Simmer 2 cups of water

>             2 cups of sugar

>             1 pint of lime juice for 20 minutes

> Steep several slices of fresh Ginger in the syrup while it

> cools. It will be a lovely very pale green which can be enhanced

> by storing a curl of the lime skin in each bottle. The flavor

> can be increased by leaving a slice of ginger in each bottle too.

>

>      I suggest that you either use a drop or two of food coloring

> or the inclusion of a token to show the flavor if you are going

> to stock several syrups. Green for lime, yellow for Lemon, and Orange

> for Orange.

>

> Clove Lemon: ( a scadian variant of lemonade)

>      2 cups of water

>      4 cups of sugar

>      1 pint of lemon juice   simmer as above

> Steep a half dozen cloves in the syrup. If you leave any in

> the bottle, you may have to pour it through a strainer.

>

>      Orange Cinnamon:

>      2 cups water

>      4 cups sugar

>      1 can orange juice concentrate

>      2-3 sticks of cinnamon.

>      Note this is less sugar than in the others because of

> the sweetness of oranges. This will be cloudy. I haven't figured

> out how to get rid of it, if anyone else knows how -- please post.

>

>      Switchel

>      This is not a syrup -- the honey IS a syrup. You just

> make it up as you need it. I suggest the traditional unglazed

> pottery jug to serve it from. It keeps it cooler.

>      1 gallon water

>      1 cup honey

>      1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt (to taste)

>      1 cup cider vinegar

>      Note, it will take some effort to mix it properly if

> you are using cold water. try mixing the honey and vinegar first

> and gradually adding the water, mixing all the while.

>      You can also make it with lemon juice instead of the

> cider vinegar -- it has more vitamin C, but less potassium, I

> wouldn't use it as a gatorade substitute except with the cider

> vinegar.

>

>      I can't give you the recipe, but I will remind you of the

> absoloutely luscious drinks one gentle was selling at the war last

> year -- he made syrups by boiling sugar syrups -- probably not so

> different from the above -- but with strawberries and blueberries in

> them. As he said, after he strained the fruit out, resulting in

> the syrups, he had no trouble finding volunteers to eat the sweetened

> pulp. I can imagine it would make a *great* topping for ice cream or

> sherbet. Then these syrups were mixed with ice water as above. It

> would result in a blue alternative in your line of syrup bottles.

> We have had some fun allowing our butler to offer the assortment to

> the guests. I guess strawberry season is gone, but the wild blueberries

> are just coming ripe....

>

>      Good luck

>              Arastorm

And from Her Excellency Mistress Rowan's cookbooks,  Rose Cordial:

        500 g sugar

        300 ml water

        1 tablespoon lemon juice

        1/4 teaspoon red food colouring (or better:  cochineal)

        60 ml rosewater (from health food stores)

 

Make a syrup with the sugar, water, and lemon juice; simmer till it

coats the back of a spoon (20-30 minutes).  Add rosewater, simmer a couple

more minutes.

--

Yseult de Lacy (Chris Robertson)    chris at aquasoft.com.au

 

 

From: bronwynmgn at aol.com (Bronwynmgn)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: drinks, pennsic

Date: 20 Jul 1995 20:05:28 -0400

 

You asked about sekanjabin... The other name you may have heard is Persian

Mint Drink.  The only way I know to make it is to make it up as a

concentrated syrup and then ilute it to taste.  Basically, it contains

water, sugar, and vinegar, and has mint steeped in it. Here's my recipe:

 

Put 2 1/2 cups of water in a saucepan.  Add 4 cups (yes, 4 cups!) of sugar

and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  The solution will miraculously

clear a few seconds after it boils as all the sugar is dissolved in the

water.  At that point, add 1 cup of red wine vinegar and allow to simmer

for 20 minutes.  Take it off the heat and add 6 sprigs of fresh mint or 6

teabags of _pure_ mint tea (Not regular tea with mint added, just mint

leaves.  Celestial Seasonings sells both spearmint and peppermint).  Let

it steep for about 6 hours, then strain if needed and bottle.  It keeps

for months in the refrigerator.  This recipe is supposed to be diluted

1:12 with water, but I dilute it to what tastes good.   This recipe makes

about a pint of syrup.

 

                     Bronwyn Morgan o Aberystwyth

                     Shire of Silver Rylle, EK

 

 

From: ansteorra at eden.com (10/30/95)

To: ansteorra at eden.com

RE>Persian Mint Drink

 

<Moriel<C11Hartel at aol.com>>

>A long time Ansteorran friend has moved out of our fair kingdom and recently

>was asking for a recipe which I thought I had, but alas do not.  Does anyone

>have the recipe for the Persian Mint Drink that the Two/Three Sisters Tavern

>used to make?  Not only would I love to have it for my files, Lady Marsali

>Fox would be most thankful as well.  

 

I'm afraid I have no such recipe.  On the other hand, I *do* have a recipe

for a related drink, called Oxymel, which comes to us from the Romans, via

the Anglo-Saxons.  It is also related to a Scandinavian drink called

"Switchel".

 

In it, essentially, one blends one part "Acetum", or a wine vinegar, with

one (or more) parts honey to 4-40 parts water (and, if desired, a bit of

salt).  Undistilled wine vinegar has, according to sources cited in "the

History of Military Medicine" (by Richard Gabriel and Karen Metz), all sorts of

good minerals and electrolytes that are removed in the distillation process

that make it extremely healthy, particularly after hot sweaty work. It is for

this reason that the Roman military carried it in their canteens (and some what

changes the whole essence of the whole "giving Vinegar to Jesus while he was on

the Cross" bit).

 

I also suspect that it's the reason that the "mushroom tea" that is becoming

to popular is supposed to be good for you.  As it ferments, the fungus

produces a type of vinegar.

 

As with mixing "Gatoraid" drinks, there is a balance of Vinegar to water that

really depends on personal tastes, and how dehydrated one is.  In any case,

I understand that if you like vinegar, these things are pretty good, and

if you don't (and I don't) all I can say is that they don't taste as bad

as you think they are going to.

 

"Mihi Satis Apparet Propter     Diarmuit Ui Dhuinn

  Se Ipsum Appetenda Sapientia" University of Northkeep/Company of St. Jude

-- St. Dunstan                    Northkeepshire, Ansteorra

                              (I. Marc Carlson/IMC at vax2.utulsa.edu)

 

 

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Date: Fri, 25 Apr 1997 23:43:53 -0700 (PDT)

Subject: SC - Various

 

Derdriu writes, re beverages:

>If anyone else has ideas, I'm all ears.

 

Manuscrito Anonimo (13th c. Andalusian) has a whole chapter of

drinks--flavored syrups that you dilute with hot or cold water to drink.

Three of them, including sekanjabin, are in the _Miscellany_, webbed at:

http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/cariadoc/miscellany.html

 

David/Cariadoc

http://www.best.com/~ddfr/

 

 

Date: Fri, 30 Jan 1998 10:09:07 -0800

From: "Crystal A. Isaac" <crystal at pdr-is.com>

Subject: Re: SC - rose sekanjabin/was coffee and tea

 

david friedman (Master Sir Cariadoc) wrote:

> Both Crystal and Kat seem to be using "sekanjabin" at least part of the

> time as a generic term for a family of syrup drinks. ...

 

I use the term "sekanjabin" to mean favored syrups with vinegar. I use

the term "syrup" or sometimes by the translated name, for example,

"syrup of carrots" to denote drinks with NO vinegar. This seems

consistent with the majority usage in the translated arabic cookbooks

and health manuals I have read.

 

I will stick with my previously stated agreement with Professor Martin

Levey, [Sakanjubin is Arabicized from Pers. sirka-anjubin, "vinegar and

honey."] and continue to refer to drinks containg vinegar as

sekanjabins.

 

I think refering to something as "the sekanjabin of dishes" might have

ment that is was tasty and well liked by everyone. In spite of the

expensive sugar, references to the drink are frequent (although not as

frequent as wine <smile>) enough to make me belive it was a very common

drink among the upper-class people we are trying to emulate.

 

I made an error in last night's post in not explaining why I included

the Syrup of roses and Syrup of mint recipes in with the sekanjabins. I

was merely trying to show that those ingredients were included in the

same cookbook, in another beverage recipe. This is not the best

documentation to show only that "they could have done it" but it seems

reasonable they would have used other beverage ingredients in the

"simple sekanjabins." I did not intend to confuse anyone into thinking

that all syrups are sekanjabins.

 

Incidentatly, the syrup of carrots is quite tasty and documents the use

of ginger in beverages. I should have included it last night, I

apologise for the oversight. Syrup of carrots is also from the

Andelthusian Cookbook.

 

<quote>Syrup of Carrots

Take four ratls of carrots, after removing the fibers [lit. "nerves"]

that are in the centers, and cook them in water until their substance

comes out. Then take the clear part of it and add it to three ratls of

honey, cleaned of its foam. The bag: ...[about three words missing]...

an uqiya of cubebs, two uqiyas each of ginger and long pepper, and half

an uqiya of cinnamon and flower of cloves. Cook until it takes the form

of a syrup. Drink an uqiya of this with three of hot water....<end

quote>

 

Crystal of the Westermark

 

 

Date: Fri, 30 Jan 1998 14:50:24 -0800

From: "Crystal A. Isaac" <crystal at pdr-is.com>

Subject: Re: SC - rose sekanjabin/wa

 

I've made the current sekanjabin two ways. One method is to get regular

ole dried currants, wash and soak them. When the currants are fully

hydrated, dump them into the cooling sekannjabin mixture. When straining

through many layers of cheesecloth or a sturdy fine-mesh grain bag,

squeeze the currents to get all the flavor out. This method works ok,

but the color is not great.

 

For better color and flavor, buy Hero brand Black currant syrup. Most

stores that carry it have it near the jams&stuff. It's expensive, about

$14 for a 16oz(?) bottle last I looked. Use a quarter to half a cup. Mix

the Hero Syrup in at the very last minute before bottling, so's not to

lose any of the good smells. Works great.

 

If you have any sources for fresh black currants, I'd love to know about

it. I don't know anybody who grows them.

 

Crystal of the Westermark

 

 

Date: Sat, 31 Jan 1998 01:24:03 -0800

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: SC - currant sekanjabin (was rose sekanjabin/wa)

 

At 2:50 PM -0800 1/30/98, Crystal A. Isaac wrote:

>I've made the current sekanjabin two ways. One method is to get regular

>ole dried currants,...

 

>For better color and flavor, buy Hero brand Black currant syrup.

 

It is not clear from this whether Crystal realizes that she is talking

about two entirely different fruits. "Regular old dried currants," aka (in

period cookbooks) "raisins of Corinth," are a small raisin. Black currants

and red currants are a different fruit--the botanical name is "ribes." I

don't know which the period source she has referred to is talking

about--looking at it in the original might help. My dictionary believes the

ribes fruits got called currants because they looked like the other kind of

currants, and the name of the original currant derives from "Corinth."

 

David/Cariadoc

http://www.best.com/~ddfr/

 

 

Date: Wed, 4 Feb 1998 16:28:57 -0800

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Lemon syrup (was SC - oxymel/hydromel/etc)

 

Syrup of Lemon

Andalusian p. A-74

 

Take lemon, after peeling its outer skin, press it and take a ratl* of

juice, and add as much of sugar. Cook it until it takes the form of a

syrup. Its advantages are for the heat of bile; it cuts the thirst and

binds the bowels. [end of original]

 

A ratl is a weight measure, about a pound.  Given that sugar and lemon

juice are both roughly 2 c = a pound, that means equal volumes or equal

weights.

 

We often serve this diluted about one part in three or four of hot water as

a strong, hot drink. Alternatively, dilute it more in cold water and you

have thirteenth century lemonade. It doen't taste quite like modern

lemonade because of the cooking.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Thu, 22 Apr 1999 12:53:40 -0400

From: Marilyn Traber <margali at 99main.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Questions on Sekainjabin

 

Congrats, you made a 'jalab', where we get the term julip. Anything can be done

as a jalab, pomegranit, citrus and honey/spice are the main ones. technically,

sekanjabin is a jalab.

 

> Allison,

>         I know that this will cause a few folks to have kittens, but...

>         Last spring I started a batch of sekanjabin syrup, set the sugar

> and vinegar to boil, and went rooting in the refrigerator, and discovered

> the mint was gone (daughter Rotrude later confessed to having eaten it).

> The only other green things in the drawer were basil and rosemary, neither

> of which would be good in the syrup. It was late and I didn't fancy a

> trip tot eh all-night grocery. So I got to thinking- my hypocras

> powder was in the  storage locker across town. But I had cinnamon sticks,

> cloves, and there were oranges in the fruit basket, so instead of the mint

> I used the spices and citrus peels. I let it sit for a day or two before

> straining, but the syrup was delicious and especially good hot. Has anyone

> else ever tried this?

> 'Lainie

 

 

Date: Thu, 22 Apr 1999 22:53:59 -0700

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Questions on Sekainjabin

 

At 8:55 PM -0700 4/22/99, Laura C Minnick wrote:

,,,

 

>       Last spring I started a batch of sekanjabin syrup, set the sugar

>and vinegar to boil, and went rooting in the refrigerator, and discovered

>the mint was gone (daughter Rotrude later confessed to having eaten it).

>The only other green things in the drawer were basil and rosemary, neither

>of which would be good in the syrup. It was late and I didn't fancy a

>trip tot eh all-night grocery. So I got to thinking- my hypocras

>powder was in the  storage locker across town. But I had cinnamon sticks,

>cloves, and there were oranges in the fruit basket, so instead of the mint

>I used the spices and citrus peels. I let it sit for a day or two before

>straining, but the syrup was delicious and especially good hot. Has anyone

>else ever tried this? It isn't the same as the stuff with the mint, but

>since I started with the Sekanjabin Simple I dubbed it 'Spiced Sekanjabin'

>(original, huh?). Has anyone else had an 'oops' like that turn out?

 

The 13th c. Andalusian cookbook has a whole chapter of drinks based on

flavored syrups, of which sekanjabin is one. They include a basil drink, a

carrot and spice drink (throw out the carrots, use the water they were

boiled in!), and much more. I'm not sure just what defines the limits of

"sekanjabin," but it seems clear that most such drinks have other names.

 

David/Cariadoc

http://www.best.com/~ddfr/

 

 

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 07:02:55 -0400

From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy at asan.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Questions on Sekainjabin

 

david friedman wrote:

> a carrot and spice drink (throw out the carrots, use the water they were

> boiled in!)

 

Given that carrots in period seem to have been a little closer to

parsnips than to modern carrots, I'll point out that when you boil

parsnips in the right mass proportion to water, you end up with quite a

respectable light syrup (fermentable and the basis of an alternative

stout in Britain). The above doesn't sound very surprising, but I agree,

it might not be the first thing a typical modern person would think of.

 

Adamantius

 

 

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 23:04:33 -0700

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Questions on Sekainjabin

 

At 9:01 PM -0500 4/23/99, Heitman wrote:

>> a carrot and spice drink (throw out the carrots, use the water they were

>> boiled in!)

>

>Cariadoc, you mentioned a number of drink syrups. Where would I find the

>receipes for these?

 

In the 13th c. Andalusian cookbook that Charles Perry translated for me. It

is included in Volume II of the collection of source material I sell. I

plan to web it at some point, but when I asked Charles about it he said he

had some corrections he wanted to make first, and he hasn't sent them yet

(it was a while ago).

 

Here are some of them:

- ---

 

Chapter One: on Drinks

 

The Great Drink of Roots

 

Take the skin of the stems of fennel, the skin of the stems of celery, the

skin of the roots of carrot and ...[three words missing]... chicory and

Mecca fig, half a ratl each; three handfuls each of halhl (lavender?),

cilantro of the spring [i.e., water source], dawmirn, tamarisk,

pennyroyal, ghfit, chicory, mint, clove basil and citron basil; two qiyas

each of the seeds of celery, carrot and roses, fennel, and habba hulwa and

nnkha [two names for, or perhaps two varieties of, nigella seed], and

half an qiya of dodder seed. The bag: half an qiya each of cinnamon,

flowers of cloves, ginger, Chinese rhubarb, Indian spikenard, mastic,

nutmeg and aloe stems, a mithql of saffron, six ratls of honey, cleansed

of its foam. Cook the herbs and seeds in water that covers them until their

force comes out; then take the clean part of it [strain it] and throw it in

honey. Put this on the fire, and leave the spices in the bag after they

have become mushy, throw them into the drink and macerate them time after

time, until their force passes into the drink. Lay it aside and take it

from the fire, let it cool, and keep until needed. Drink one qiya of this

with three of water on arising, and see that the water is hot. Benefits:

fortifies the stomach and the liver, opens blockages of the liver and

spleen, cleans the stomach, and is beneficial for the rest of the

phlegmatic ailments of the body.

 

The Little Drink of Roots: Way of Making It

 

Take the skin of the stems of caper bush, the skin of the stems of celery,

the skin of fennel root and the skin of wild carrots, two qiyas of each;

two handfuls each of halhl (lavender?), cilantro of the spring, dawmirn,

ghfit, chicory, pennyroyal and euphorbia. The bag: cinnamon, and flower of

cloves and ginger, an qiya of each; half a mithql of saffron; three ratls

of honey, cleaned of its foam. Cook the seeds and herbs, covered with

water, until their strength comes out. Then take the clean part, add to the

honey, and take it to the fire, and put the bag in a kettle until it forms

a well-made syrup. Take it from the fire and pour it into an earthenware

vessel. The drink is made with two qiyas of syrup to three qiyas of hot

water. Its benefits: it benefits the liver and opens occlusions of it, it

is useful for the spleen and cleanses the stomach of its extra phlegm

wherever it is found in the body, and it is of profit in diseases of

dropsy, God willing.

 

Syrup of Aloe Wood [Stem?]: Way of Making It

 

Take half an qiya of aloe, a quarter qiya each of cinnamon, cloves,

Chinese cinnamon, Indian lavender, nutmeg, mastic and saffron, a ratl of

sugar and the same of rosewater. Close the roots in a bag and place them in

the sugar and rosewater. Bring all this to the fire until it takes the

consistency of syrups; then remove it from the fire, grind eight grams of

musk, and throw it in an earthenware vessel. The drink is an qiya with two

of hot water. Its benefits: it fortifies the stomach, the liver, and the

other parts, cheers the heart, tempers the constitution a bit, and helps in

the beginning of dropsy.

 

Syrup of Citron Leaves: Way of Making It

 

Take fifty leaves and remove the dust on them with a cloth, then cover them

all with water in a pot and cook it until the strength comes out. Then take

the clean part of it and add a ratl of sugar. The bag: half an qiya each

of aloe stems, Chinese cinnamon, and cloves. Cook all this until it becomes

good to drink. Drink one qiya with three of water. Its benefits: it cheers

the heart with much gaiety, fortifies the internal organs, and softens the

bowels gently; it is extraordinary.

 

The Great Cheering Syrup: Way of Making It

 

Take half a ratl each of borage, mint, and citron leaves, cook them in

water to cover until their strength comes out, then take the clean part and

add it to a ratl of sugar. Then put in the bag: a spoonful each of aloe

stems, Chinese rhubarb, Chinese cinnamon, cinnamon and clove flowers; pound

all these coarsely, place them in a cloth, tie it well, and place it in the

kettle, macerate it again and again until its substance passes out, and

cook until [the liquid] takes the consistency of syrups. Take one qiya

with three of hot water. Benefits: It profits [preceding two words

apparently supplied; in parentheses in printed Arabic text] weak stomachs,

fortifies the liver and cheers the heart, digests foods, and lightens the

constitution gently, God willing.

 

A Syrup of Honey

 

Take a quarter qiya each of cinnamon, flower of cloves and ginger, mastic,

nutmeg, Chinese cinnamon, Sindi laurel, Indian lavender, Roman spikenard,

elder twigs, elder seeds, oil of nutmeg, bitter and sweet nuts, large and

small cardamom, wild spikenard, galingale, aloe stems, saffron, and sedge.

Pound all this coarsely, tie it in a cloth, and put it in the kettle with

fifteen ratls of water and five of honey, cleaned of its foam. Cook all

this until it is at the point of drinking. Drink an qiya and a half, and

up to two, with hot water. Its benefit is for weak livers; it fortifies the

stomach and benefits dropsy among other ailments; it dissolves phlegm from

all parts of the body and heats it a great deal, gives gaiety, lightens the

body, and it was used by the ancients like wine for weariness.

 

Recipe for Honey-Water

 

Take a ratl of honey and add five ratls of water, cook until the water

departs and the honey remains, and clean off the foam little by little.

Pound half an qiya of pellitory and place it in a cloth, put it in the

kettle and bruise it once and again until its substance comes out. Remove

it to an earthenware vessel, and take it from it at the necessary time, for

it makes up for all that which detracts from this notable quality.

 

The Recipe for Making a Syrup of Julep

 

Take five ratls of aromatic rosewater, and two and a half of sugar, cook

all this until it takes the consistency of syrups. Drink two qiyas of this

with three of hot water. Its benefits: in phlegmatic fever; it fortifies

the stomach and the liver, profits at the onset of dropsy, purifies and

lightens the body, and in this it is most extraordinary, God willing.

 

Syrup of Sandalwood: Way of Making It

 

Take two qiyas each of red and white sandalwood, and an qiya of white

manna of sugarcane. Then pound the sandalwood and cook it in rosewater

until its substance comes out, and let there be five ratls of the

rosewater. Then take the clean part of it and add it to two ratls of sugar,

take the tabshr and put it in a bag, and cook all this until it forms a

well-made syrup. Its benefits are to calm the heat of jaundice, to cut

thirst, and to profit in the other ailments and fevers of jaundice. It

leaves the nature as it is, without causing retention or thinness of urine.

It fortifies the stomach, the liver, and the other organs, and in this it

is most extraordinary.

 

Formula for Making a Syrup of Mastic

 

Take three qiyas of mastic, powder it and put it in a bag, then take a

ratl of mint and cook it, covered with water, until its substance comes

out. Take the clean part of it and mix it with three ratls of sugar and

honey, and cook all this until it takes the form of a drink. Drink two

qiyas of this with three of hot water. Its profits: for the stomach and

for digesting food; it cuts vomiting and binds the bowels, and fortifies

the liver: it is the utmost in this.

 

Syrup of Harir: Way of Making It

 

Take the almonds of silk and extract from them the small seeds, after

removing their hearts, four ratls. Then divide almonds and clean the dirt

from them, wash them very well in cold water until softened, and drain the

water. Then take water out of a river oriented Eastward; heat polished

steel and cool it in this water until the water is reduced by half and

changes color. Cook the harir in this water until its substance comes out;

press it, and add to the water three ratls of honey, cleaned of its foam.

The bag: half an qiya each of cinnamon and cloves, an qiya of ginger, an

qiya each of cubebs, long pepper and galingale. Then pound roots and put

them in a bag, which is then tied with a strong thread and added to the

honey and the clean part. Put it on the fire and cook it until a syrup is

made. Drink two qiyas of this with three of hot water. It profits in the

lack of urine, and increases desire well; it dissolves the fat from all

parts of the body and heats it well, God willing, by its generosity and

virtue.

 

Syrup of Mint: Way of Making It

 

Take mint and basil, citron and cloves, a handful of each, and cook all

this in water to cover, until its substance comes out, and add the clear

part of it to a ratl of sugar. The bag: an qiya of flower of cloves, and

cook all this until a syrup is made. Its benefits: it frees bodies that

suffer from phlegm, and cuts phlegmatic urine, fortifies the liver and the

stomach and cheers it a great deal; in this it is admirable.

 

Syrup of Fresh Roses, and the Recipe for Making It

 

Take a ratl of fresh roses, after removing the dirt from them, and cover

them with boiled water for a day and a night, until the water cools and the

roses fall apart in the water. Clean it and take the clean part of it and

add to a ratl of sugar. Cook all this until it takes the form of a syrup.

Drink an qiya of this with two of hot water; its benefits are at the onset

of dropsy, and it fortifies the stomach and the liver and the other

internal organs, and lightens the constitution; in this it is admirable.

A Recipe for Making It by Repetition

 

Take the same, a ratl of roses or more, and place it in water to cover it,

boiling for a day and a night. Then take out the roses that are in the

water and throw them away, and go with the same quantity of fresh roses,

which are to be covered likewise with this water, after boiling it a second

time, and leave this also a day and a night. Throw away these roses

likewise, and put in others and treat them as before, and continue doing

this for ten days or more. Its benefit and the strength of its making are

solely in the manner of repeating. Then clarify the water of roses and add

to it as much sugar, and cook it until it takes the form of a syrup. It

reaches the limit in thinning and moistening the constitution, God willing.

 

Syrup of Dried Roses

 

Take a ratl of dried roses, and cover with three ratls of boiling water,

for a night, and leave it until they fall apart in the water. Press it and

clarify it, take the clear part and add it to two ratls of white sugar, and

cook all this until it is in the form of a syrup. Drink an qiya and a half

of this with three of water. Its benefits: it binds the constitution, and

benefits at the start of dropsy, fortifies the other internal organs, and

provokes the appetite, God willing.

 

Syrup of Violets

 

Take a ratl of fresh violet flowers, and cover them with three ratls of

boiling water, and boil until their substance comes out; then take the

clean part of it and mix it with four ratls of sugar, and cook all this

until it takes the form of a syrup. Drink an qiya and a half of this with

three of hot water. Its benefits are in the fever of jaundice, it cuts

thirst and lightens the body gently, and benefits in dry coughs, but it

weakens the stomach.

 

David/Cariadoc

http://www.best.com/~ddfr/

 

 

Date: Tue, 4 May 1999 13:37:09 +1000

From: "HICKS, MELISSA" <HICKS_M at casa.gov.au>

Subject: SC - Syrup of Violets

 

Elinor Fettiplace (nouvelle cuisine I know) gives a recipe for Violet Syrup.

I have included the recipe and my notes below in case anyone is interested.

 

Please note, that in later times (and in English) these concoctions are

referred to as Sirrops or Syrups not Sekanjabins.

 

Meliora.

 

Syrup of Violets Elinor Fettiplace (1602)

First make a thicke sirop of sugar and clarifie yt well, then take blew

violetts and picke them well from the whights then put them in the sirrop,

let them lye in yt 24 howres keepinge it warme in the meane time, then

straine these violetts out and put in fresh, so do 4 times then set them on

the fire, let them simper a good while but not boyle fast put in some juice

of limonds in the boyleinge then straine yt and leepe yt to your use.

 

1 pint water

1 pound sugar

4 pints (volume) of violet petals

1 tablespoon lemon juice

 

Find a large garden bed covered in purple violets.  Pick them for about 2

hours.  Spend the rest of the day taking the petals from the rest of the

flower head and removing the white part of the petal.

 

Once this is done, you will have approximately one pint in volume of violet

petals.  Mix the sugar and water and heat until the sugar dissolves.  Cool

slightly and add the violet petals. Leave in a warm place for 24 hours.

 

Strain these petals out of the mixture, warm briefly and add the next pint

of petals.  You would have spent most of this second day preparing this next

batch.  Repeat this twice more.

 

After you have strained the final batch of petals warm the mixture and add

one tablespoon of lemon juice.  simmer for ten minutes and then let cool and

bottle.

 

 

Date: Tue, 03 Aug 1999 14:10:47 PDT

From: "Bonne of Traquair" <oftraquair at hotmail.com>

Subject: SC - cherry-vinegar syrup drink

 

I was recently gifted with about 8 lbs of fresh cherries. My first

inclination was to make cherry jam.  But, a decent enough version of that

can be purchased.  I'm a fan of pickled fruits which are harder to find in

the stores.  So, I found a recipe for pickled cherries.

 

After canning the pickled cherries, I had several cups of cherry and clove

flavored sweet vinegar.  I recalled mention in the Florilegium of a drink

syrup along those lines. (Later located under "jalabs").  I experimented,

first adding more sugar and cooking it down.  Later adding a tablespoon more

of red wine vinegar to the finished syrup, evidently I'd cooked all the

vinegar out trying to get to the syrup stage.  I serve it diluted as for

senkajabin, 10:1.  Yum!

 

Bonne

 

 

Date: Sat, 4 Mar 2000 10:32:53 -0600

From: david friedman <ddfr at best.com>

Subject: Re: SC - Re: Feast Beverages

 

At 11:08 AM -0500 3/4/00, alysk at ix.netcom.com wrote:

>In my local-ish area (Midrealm) sekanjabin is sometimes offered, but the

>tastes of the person who made it can often turn off the folk to whom the

>beverage is served.  Frequently it is so vinegary that it is nearly

>undrinkable.  Sometimes it is far too strong, even though the sweet and

>sour have been balanced.

 

There are two dimensions here--ratio of vinegar to sugar, and ratio

of both to water. The individual feaster can't do anything about the

former. But if the cook serves both sekanjabin and water, the feaster

can always dilute the sekanjabin down to his taste if it is too

strong.

 

David Friedman

ddfr at best.com

http://www.best.com/~ddfr/

 

 

Date: Sun, 05 Mar 2000 17:28:37 EST

From: allilyn at juno.com

Subject: Re: SC - Feast Beverages

 

His Grace writes:

>>

I introduced sekanjabin to the SCA for the specific purpose of replacing

iced tea (Salaamallah, I believe, independently introduced it, probably

for the same purpose). Like iced tea it is a cold drink that is very

inexpensive and very little trouble. Unlike iced tea, it is a drink that

was in common use in period--albeit in the civilized world, not among the

Franks.<<

 

Sekanjabin is well received in summer in AEthelmearc, and has the

advantage of varying in taste with the type of mint and the type of

vinegar.  Two summer feasts proved to me and my assorted cooking staff

that it is well worth the money to find and buy the imported red wine

vinegar from Modena, Italy.  It's supposed to be aged in wood casks, as

finer liquors are, and has a much smoother taste than the

set-your-teeth-on-edge sharpness of many grocery store vinegars.  Make it

up a week or three in advance, and it's one less thing to worry about.

Stretch your cooking staff on the day by assigning the mixing job to a

non-cook.

 

If we are going to leave lapses in our authenticity, then a period drink

that might have been known to crusaders, even if they didn't go out to

the kitchen and make some, is better than something more blatantly

modern.

 

Allison,     allilyn at juno.com

 

 

Date: Wed, 19 Apr 2000 16:28:20 -0500

From: Jenn/Yana <jdmiller2 at students.wisc.edu>

Subject: SC - modern recipe for sekanjabin

 

This Iranian/Persian recipe page does not suggest that sekanjabin is for

drinking.  Never would have thought of making it for this purpose, but it

does sound like a refreshing thing to do.

- --Yana

 

From <http://www.ee.surrey.ac.uk/Personal/F.Mokhtarian/recipes/sekanjebin.html>;

 

Sekanjebin

Ingredients: (4 servings)

 

     sugar, 500 grams

     white vinegar, 100 grams

     fresh mint, one small bunch

     fresh lettuce, one bunch

 

Directions:

Dissolve sugar in two glasses of water and bring to a boil. Wash mint and

tie it together with a string and drop it in the mix. Allow the mix to

thicken. Add vinegar and boil for another minute. Remove mint. Serve cold

with fresh lettuce. Lettuce should be dipped in sekanjebin.

 

 

Date: Wed, 31 Jan 2001 22:03:45 +0100

From: TG <gloning at Mailer.Uni-Marburg.DE>

Subject: Re: SC - Oxymel, anyone?

 

E.g., the fourth century medical doctor Philargius has some medical uses

mostly for the spleen. Among other uses, he says that one should cook

certain plants in oxymel [1]. You could look if there is an article on

oxymel in the "Realencyclopdie der classischen Altertumswissenschaft"

(ed. Pauly and Wissowa, 1894ff; about 100 vols.). If there is an

article, they have the references ...

 

In the Middle Ages, the Tacuin sanitatis (Taqwim al-sihha) of Ibn-Butlan

mentions oxymel in several places to mitigate certain food stuffs, and I

seem to remember that this text also deals with secanjabin somewhere

(just did not find it now; am somewhat in a hurry).

 

Preparations of different oxymels and secaniabins seem to have belonged

to the standard repertoire of apothecaries. The 'Compendium

aromatariorum' of Saladin of Asculo (a 15th c. handbook) refers to the

chapters of Mesue in which simple and complex secaniabins and oxymel are

described. Other texts quote and comment on recipes: e.g. the 'Luminare

maius' (1536) gives a recipe for a _Secaniabin de radicibus_ ('a

secaniabin of roots'; fol. xxxij), a number of oxymels and syrops ...

 

There should be a vaste body of material in other medical and

pharmacological texts of this kind.

 

Thomas

[1] "Optima enim sunt his capparis radicis cortices et scolopendrion et

myrices cortices et radices aut cymae; coquere autem haec omnia convenit

in aceto aut in oxymelle".

(Puschmann, Th., ed.: Nachtrge zu Alexander Trallianus. Fragmente aus

Philumenus und Philagrius. Berlin 1887, 120. Other places where oxymel

is mentioned are in the index.)

 

 

From: "Elise Fleming" <alysk at ix.netcom.com>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Date: Fri, 11 May 2001 17:01:08 -0500

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Trying New Stuff

 

Stefan wrote:

>And I've got first hand stories of Sekanjabin syrup lasting several (five?)

>years on the shelf without refrigeration.

 

Yup.  Mine's sitting up there and is at least 4 years old. No

problem with it.  I also have some cordials that I tried five to six

years ago.  Still sitting there...

 

Alys Katharine

 

 

From: "Sara Tallarovic" <electricfish at earthlink.net>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Date: Wed, 30 May 2001 11:00:15 -0700

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: Dehydration

 

Marian Rosenberg wrote:

"Speaking of sekanjabin ... if you really really really hate making

sekanjabin (or, have read recipes and listened to friends tell of making

it and been scared away) I found a source for commercially made

sekanjabin.  Ingredients: Sugar, Mint Flavored Vinegar, Water.

 

http://sadaf.com/store/page22.html

Sekanjabin Mint Syrup $4.99

 

The bottle is about the size of a wine bottle, and makes (at my

proportions of syrup to water) 10 liters of Sekanjabin.

 

(A quick scan of their site finds saffron, sumac, mango ginger chutney,

sesame candies, and other yummies at really good prices)"

 

I can vouch for this syrup made by Sadaf.  It is REALLY good and very easy =

when camping or whatever.  I bought a 24.5 fl. oz. bottle at my local Halal=

market for $4.49 and took it to Gulf War.  We had a pitcher of Sekanjaban =

always sitting on the table for refreshment.  A little syrup goes a long wa=

y...I still have some left.  I add a touch of rosewater to it as well.  Eve=

n the kids liked it.

 

-Shu'la

 

 

From: DeeWolff at aol.com

Date: Tue, 19 Jun 2001 13:09:18 EDT

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: [Sca-cooks]Sekanjabin

 

In a message dated 6/19/01 1:36:27 AM, Etain1263 at aol.com writes:

<< I'm also experimenting with various mints in sekanjabin.  Does anyone use

the honey/vinegar method?  (rather than the sugar one?) I'm interested in

what proportions are used >>

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

I use that method.  I use 3:1. and I simmer it all day on a low flame. It

gets very thick.

 

I then pack up small containers(like ziplocks) and keep them in the freezer

so when I need a quick drink, I add it to water to taste (They WILL NOT

FREEZE, but they stay nice and cold).

 

With the mint garden slowly spreading into the lawn, sekanjabin is a usual

item in my menu in the summer.

 

(PS. I find spearmint is the best. Not too intense. But I also have

peppermint as well)

 

Andrea

 

 

Date: Mon, 23 Jul 2001 17:59:34 -0400

From: johnna holloway <johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu>

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Lemon Syrup?

 

jenne at fiedlerfamily.net wrote:

> Has anyone ever made lemon syrup for drinks from 'reconstituted lemon

> juice'? Do you mix it equal parts with sugar, and heat?

>

> -- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa

 

If you are thinking about using REALLEMON in the glass

bottles, I wouldn't.  There is something really artificial

tasting about the lemonade/lemon syrup made from it. You can

use the frozen Minute Maid Juice that's in the freezer case.

It makes up fine. REALLEMON works ok in small amounts in recipes

like "Italian Beef" or certain desserts that only need 1-2 teaspoons.

 

Johnnae llyn Lewis

 

 

From: Bronwynmgn at aol.com

Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2001 08:36:56 EDT

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Lemon Syrup?

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

jenne at fiedlerfamily.net writes:

> Has anyone ever made lemon syrup for drinks from 'reconstituted lemon

> juice'? Do you mix it equal parts with sugar, and heat?

 

I do it all the time, and despite Siggy's objections, I find that it tastes

reasonably good.  I don't own an electric juicer, and the tendonitis in the

wrists simply will not take all the hand squeezing required to make it in

the quantities I use (lemonade being one of my favorite drinks).

 

I worked it out with Food for Fifty book - if you are going for weight

measurement, use 1 1/4 cups of sugar for each cup of lemon juice.  A pint is

NOT a pound the world around.  I bring it to a boil to let the sugar get

into solution, and then simmer it for about half an hour or so.

 

I haven't kept any of it with the higher concentration of sugar for long, but

with using only 1 cup sugar to one cup juice I would find that even under

refrigeration, after a month or two, it would start to get lumps of what

looked like cotton in it.  I wasn't sure what it was, but I pitched it on

general principles.  I do tend to keep mine in the fridge or cooler.

 

Brangwayna Morgan

 

 

From: "Gwynydd Of Culloden" <gwynydd_of_culloden at yahoo.com>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] Lemon Syrup?

Date: Wed, 25 Jul 2001 05:49:06 +1000

 

> > Has anyone ever made lemon syrup for drinks from 'reconstituted lemon

> > juice'?

 

While I have never used the "RealLemon" product being mentioned here, I make

huge amounts of Lemon Syrope (as I label it - based on the recipe in the

Miscellany except that I use bottled lemon juice not fresh squeezed) using

bottled, refrigerate-after-opening lemon juice.  I find it to be very good

and I have had no adverse comments from consumers.  I have only used fresh

lemons once and I think they were too young; the syrup was less than

successful.  One day I might have another go at fresh juice, but the bottled

stuff is so convenient and cheap that I have no real reason to do so.

 

I use a variety of brands and this ingredient list is fairly much standard

for all of them (I add this simply because it is possible that there are

major differences between what I have available here in Tasmania and what is

available in the States).

 

"Reconstituted lemon juice, preservative (223), water added, 99.9% lemon

juice".  When I make it to sell, I always include this information on the

label - some brands use 2 preservative numbers, so I alter the labels

depending on what I am using.

 

> > Do you mix it equal parts with sugar, and heat?

 

I make it following the instructions in the Miscellany; equal VOLUME juice

and sugar (i.e. cup for cup) mixed together and brought to a boil. Boil for

30 minutes.  This keeps without refrigeration here for ages (months - at

least a year, in my experience).  I think that the "cotton" like lumps which

someone else mentioned may be something which has happened to my rose and

sekanjabin syrups.  From a discussion on the List some time back, I think it

might have something to do with the specific gravity of the solution (I

could be misremembering), however, it doesn't do any harm and simply soaking

the bottle of syrup in hot water returns it to its liquid form.  I have

never had this happen to the lemon.  If your syrup does this, I would

suggest trying this before ditching it.  This stuff, as I said, seems to

keep for ages without refrigeration here in Tasmania.  I keep a small supply

in the 'fridge so that it is cold when one wants to use it, but it does not

seem to be necessary.

 

Gwynydd of Culloden

 

 

From: Bronwynmgn at aol.com

Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2001 15:47:44 EDT

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Lemon Syrup?

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

jenne at fiedlerfamily.net writes:

> I'll try Brangwayna's recipe this year, and if it sucks, next year they

> can go back to the powdered stuff.

 

I'd take my version, even with cheapo reconsitituted juice, over the sugary

powdered crap any day.

I have made it with lemons once or twice.  It's kind of neat having the pulp

in it (I sieved some of it out, but not all), and it does taste slightly

...sharper, or something, but the reconstituted stuff works for me.

 

Brangwayna Morgan

 

 

From: "Avraham haRofeh" <goldberg at bestweb.net>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Sugar Free Sakanjabin

Date: Mon, 24 Jun 2002 18:23:51 -0400

 

> I remember once in a blue moon ago (I think it was

> 2ish years ago) there was a discussion on this list

> about trying to make Sakanjabin with artificial

> sweetners.  Did anyone ever get around to trying it?

> I'm teaching a class on Sakanjabin this weekend and

> would like to mention the attempt/results if anyone

> did it.

 

I made it with Splenda. It had a faint, odd aftertaste, and wasn't quite as

thick as regular sekanjabin, but was quite acceptable.

 

Avraham

****************************************

Avraham haRofeh of Northpass

     (mka Randy Goldberg MD)

 

 

From: Bronwynmgn at aol.com

Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2001 16:42:11 EDT

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] re: Lemon Syrup

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

gwynydd_of_culloden at yahoo.com writes:

> I can't answer the question about figuring out the sugar content, but I can

> say that I think we make it up much more dilute than 1:5 - closer to 1:8 or

> even 1:10.  I find that a little of this goes a very long way.

 

Yeah, that's why I said diluted at least 1 part syrup to 5 water - lots of

people make it more dilute than that, but that's about the strongest I've

seen most people do (that excludes my husband and the lady of my household,

who have been known to drink my sekanjabin syrup straight when they think

they can get away with it - yeeurgh.)

 

> those who haven't tried it, do try both Syrup of Lemons and

> sekanjabin hot - they are wonderful on a cold winter's night this way.

 

I haven't actually tried the sekanjabin, but the first time I made the lemon

syrup it was a cold rainy day, so we all drank it hot - yum.

 

I also have a recipe for a non-period spiced lemonaid which makes a wonderful

hot drink, especially when you have a sore throat.

 

To one gallon boiling water add:

4 lemons, cut in half and reamed out or squeezed (the juice is what goes in

of course); drop the shells in too.

12 whole cloves

about 1/8-1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom  (I think the original called for 4

pods of cardamom; I have ground on hand, and don't use the pods for anything

else, so..)

 

Let simmer for about half an hour, then take off the heat and add honey to

taste (after fishing out the lemon shells).  This absolutely does need to be

refrigerated; it grows really interesting black stuff when it's not....

 

For those of you in the Bryn Gwlad area who remember the stuff Magdalena used

to make, that she called "Bronwyn's spiced lemonaide"?  I used to be Bronwyn,

and this is the recipe she was using.  By the way, if anyone knows where she

is, would you pass on my greetings and email address?  I haven't heard from

her in years...

 

Brangwayna Morgan

 

 

From: jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

Date: Wed, 25 Jul 2001 12:26:57 -0400 (EDT)

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Fighter food

 

> >Ginger drink (with sugar)

> What kind of Ginger drink? This sounds great!

> I want some!

 

Right now, my current favorite ginger syrup is ginger, lemon, sugar and

water: 4 c. sugar and 2.5 c. water, bring to a boil, add 1 to 1.25 c.

lemon

juice. Simmer until reduced by almost half, adding some shavings of ginger

and lemon peel. Then add 3-4 inches of ginger root, chopped, and boil a

bit longer. Add a little more lemon. Soak over night and bottle.

 

I've also had switchel-style ginger drink made by substituting ginger for

mint in the sekanjabin recipe and that was yummy too.

 

-- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa

 

 

Date: Thu, 2 Oct 2003 12:48:18 -0400

From: "Christine Seelye-King" <kingstaste at mindspring.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] period beverages

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Here are the recipes from the Miscellany, none of them calls for mint. I

have also had syrups of violet (wonderful), rose (ok, but could get

cloying), carrot, tamarind, and others.

Experiment and have fun!

Christianna

 

Syrup of Simple Sikanjabn

(Oxymel)

Andalusian p. A-74

 

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 qiya of this with

three of hot water when fasting: it is beneficial for fevers of  

jaundice,

and calms jaundice and cuts the thirst, since sikanjabn syrup is  

beneficial

in phlegmatic fevers: make it with six qiyas of sour vinegar for a  

ratl of

honey and it is admirable.

 

This seems to be at least two different recipes, for two different  

medical

uses. The first, at least, is intended to be drunk hot. In modern  

Iranian

restaurants, sekanjabin is normally served cold, often with grated  

cucumber.

 

 

Syrup of Pomegranates

Andalusian p. A-74

 

Take a ratl of sour pomegranates and another of sweet pomegranates, and  

add

their juice to two ratls of sugar, cook all this until it takes the

consistency of syrup, and keep until needed. Its benefits: it is useful  

for

fevers, and cuts the thirst, it benefits bilious fevers and lightens the

body gently.

 

Use equal volumes of sugar and pomegranate juice (found in some health

food

stores). Cook them down to a thick syrup, in which form they will keep,

without refrigeration, for a very long time. To serve, dilute one part

of

syrup in 3 to 6 parts of hot water (to taste).

 

 

Syrup of Lemon

Andalusian p. 279 (trans DF)

 

Take lemon, after peeling its outer skin, press it and take a ratl of

juice,

and add as much of sugar. Cook it until it takes the form of a syrup.

Its

advantages are for the heat of bile; it cuts the thirst and binds the

bowels.

 

This we also serve as a strong, hot drink. Alternatively, dilute it in

cold

water and you have thirteenth century lemonade. All three of the  

original

recipes include comments on medical uses of the syrups.

 

 

Hippocras

Goodman p. 299/28

 

To make powdered hippocras, take a quarter of very fine cinnamon  

selected by

tasting it, and half a quarter of fine flour of cinnamon, an ounce of

selected string ginger, fine and white, and an ounce of grain of  

Paradise, a

sixth of nutmegs and galingale together, and bray them all together. And

when you would make your hippocras, take a good half ounce of this  

powder

and two quarters of sugar and mix them with a quart of wine, by Paris

measure. And note that the powder and the sugar mixed together is the

Duke's

powder.

 

4 oz stick cinnamon

2 oz powdered cinnamon

"A sixth" (probably of a pound-2 2/3 ounces) of nutmegs and galingale

together

1 oz of ginger

1 oz of grains of paradise

 

Grind them all together. To make hippocras add 1/2 ounce of the powder

and

1/2 lb (1 cup) of sugar to a 2 quarts of boiling wine (the quart used to

measure wine in Paris c. 1393 was about 2 modern U.S. quarts, the pound  

and

ounce about the same as ours). Strain through a sleeve of Hippocrates (a

tube of cloth, closed at one end).

 

 

Date: Mon, 6 Oct 2003 00:31:22 -0400

From "Christine Seelye-King" <kingstaste at mindspring.com>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] A jalab recipe - Syrup of Carrots

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

As I recall, when Serena made this for her feast, it came out a dark brown

with just a tinge of oarange - it just wasn't what I was expecting. It was

ok, not wonderful, not terrible, different, and ok.

Christianna

 

Syrup of Carots

Take four ratls of carrots, after removing the fibers [lit. "nerves"]

that are in the centers, and cook them in water until their substance

comes out. Then take the clear part of it and add it to three ratls of

honey, cleaned of its foam. The bag: ..[about three words missing]...

an uqiya of cubebs, two uqiyas each of ginger and long pepper, and half

an uqiya of cinnamon and flower of cloves. Cook until it takes the form

of a syrup. Drink an uqiya of this with three of hot water....

 

 

Date: Tue, 7 Oct 2003 10:01:06 -0700

From: david friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Subject: RE: [Sca-cooks] A jalab recipe - Syrup of Carrots

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Stefan quoted the recipe:

>> Syrup of Carrots

>>  Take four ratls of carrots, after removing the fibers [lit. "nerves"]

>>  that are in the centers, and cook them in water until their substance

>>  comes out. Then take the clear part of it and add it to three ratls of

>>  honey, cleaned of its foam. The bag: ...[about three words missing]...

>>  an uqiya of cubebs, two uqiyas each of ginger and long pepper, and half

>>  an uqiya of cinnamon and flower of cloves. Cook until it takes the form

>> of a syrup. Drink an uqiya of this with three of hot water....

 

and Micaylah replied:

 

> Imo, its a pretty straight forward translation except my brain is

> refusing to give up the equivalents of a ratl and a uqiya. I know I knew

> this. Can anyone please reiterate? I am also assuming that they want you

> to core the carrots?

 

A ratl is about a pound, an uqiya is one twelfth of a ratl--think

Troy ounce. And yes, it looks like coring the carrots. We did this

once and threw all the bits of the carrot we didn't use into a

chicken soup. The drink wasn't bad but wasn't good enough that we

have done it again.

 

Elizabeth/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 09:54:01 -0500 (EST)

From: <jenne at fiedlerfamily.net>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] lemon syrup

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Gah. Many years ago, when I first started making lemon syrup for the

dayboard for our 800 person event, there was a storm of protest on this

list to the idea of using reconstituted lemon juice (ReaLemon type) to

make the lemon syrup.

 

To be more authentic, I've made the lemon syrup for my upcoming feast

(80 seats) from fresh lemons. 40 of them, made about 2 quarts of

syrup, which should make about 8-10 pitchers of lemon drink. The taste

is a little better/different, but not much.

 

Guys, with all due respect, if you are making lemon syrup for large

numbers and don't have several lemon trees in your backyard, reconstituted

Lemon juice works just fine, and it makes it possible to get enough

Lemon drink for people!

 

-- Pani Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 Nov 2004 16:39:05 -0800

From: David Friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pomegranite Juice

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

maire wrote:

> There are a number of middle eastern/islamic recipes that use

> pomegranite.  May I suggest a "cruise" through the Anonymous Andalusian

> cookbook on His Grace's website?

> There's one, as well, in my Middle Eastern cookbook, that involves

> cooking chicken and onions and walnuts (?) in pomegranite juice.

> Very tasty, but don't do it in a cast iron pan, as it turns a rather

> distinct black!

> Uhm, you could also make a pomegranite version of sekanjabin syrup,

> using sugar and water and juice.

 

You don't need water. According to the anonymous Andalusian cookbook:

 

Take a ratl of sour pomegranates and another of sweet pomegranates,

and add their juice to two ratls of sugar, cook all this until it

takes the consistency of syrup, and keep until needed. Its benefits:

it is useful for fevers, and cuts the thirst, it benefits bilious

fevers and lightens the body gently. [end of original]

 

(A ratl is a weight, about a pound.)

 

What we usually do it to take equal parts sugar and pomegranate juice

and cook it down to a syrup; we once juiced pomegranates ourselves

and it wasn't very different (except a lot more work). I don't know

if the sour and sweet pomegranates are different varieties or

different ripeness. This is especially good as a hot sweet drink,

mixed up somewhat thicker than we usually do sekanjabin, maybe 1:4 or

1:6.

 

Elizabeth of Dendermonde/Betty Cook

 

 

Date: Sun, 14 Nov 2004 21:42:51 -0800 (PST)

From: Robin Carroll-Mann <rcmann4 at earthlink.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Pomegranite Juice

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

-----Original Message-----

What we usually do it to take equal parts sugar and pomegranate juice

and cook it down to a syrup; we once juiced pomegranates ourselves

and it wasn't very different (except a lot more work). I don't know

if the sour and sweet pomegranates are different varieties or

different ripeness. This is especially good as a hot sweet drink,

mixed up somewhat thicker than we usually do sekanjabin, maybe 1:4 or

1:6.

 

Elizabeth of Dendermonde/Betty Cook

_______________________________________________

 

I have made an approximation of this as a cold drink, using pomegranate

molasses diluted with water, and sweetened with a simple sugar syrup.  

It has gone over very well at the events where I've served it.

 

Lady Brighid ni Chiarain

Barony of Settmour Swamp, East Kingdom

 

 

Date: Thu, 18 Nov 2004 15:56:16 -0500

From: Jadwiga Zajaczkowa / Jenne Heise <jenne at fiedlerfamily.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Sekanjabin Origins\

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

> I've seen the word "jalab" used, by modern Middle Eastern grocers, to

> a particular drink syrup flavored with rosewater, but it's quite

> possible that it has or had a broader meaning of "drink syrup" in

> general.

 

Culpeper refers to jalaps or jalabs as a sort of drink made with

flavored syrup and water. So Sekanjabin would be a sort of jalab, but

jalabs wouldn't necessarily be sekanjabins or oxymels.

--

-- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

 

 

Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 14:15:28 -0500

From: Jadwiga Zajaczkowa / Jenne Heise <jenne at fiedlrfamily.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Overdocumentation

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

I was told, emphatically, that lemon syrup drink made from fresh lemon

juice was very different from that made with reconstituted lemon juice.

But, for a dayboard for 700, I used the reconstituted stuff. For a feast

for 80, where I only had to do 8 pitchers worth, I juiced the 40 lemons

and made it fresh. And that's when I found out there isn't that much

difference after you've heat-processed it to make syrup.

--

-- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

 

 

Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2004 10:49:37 -0800

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] jalabs (was Sekanjabin Origins)

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

After a fair bit of discussion on that other SCA Middle Eastern list,

i am now of the opinion that "jalab" is not the best word. I have now

shifted to "sharab" which really does mean "syrup" and which word is

used in both the past and in current times for flavored syrups used

to make beverages.

 

In our current times, jalab is a specific type of drink syrup made of

date syrup flavored with rose water. I did find "jullab" in

SCA-period, but not used separately. In the book "The Description of

Familiar Foods", translated by Charles Perry, on p. 343 of "Medieval

Arab Cookery", is a recipe for a meat and nut dish called Jullabiyya.

Next to the name in brackets, Perry has "jullab, syrup". But there

are no recipes for jullab as a syrup.

 

There is, however, in the same book ("The Description of Familiar

Foods") a recipe for "sharab jalil al-qadr", translated as "syrup of

sublime power", p. 441. It is made with soaked raisins, rainwater,

honey, and spices, and drunk mixed with water. So here is an example

of "sharab" actually used for a syrup.

 

Of course, if i knew the names of the recipes in the Andalusian

cookbook in their actual Arabic i could better tell if "sharab" was

what they any of them were called.

 

Also, i don't know if Sekanjabin qualified as a "sharab". I am not

saying it is not a sharab, i just don't know if it is a sharab. As an

oxymel, it could be considered to be in a different category. Or

maybe not.

 

Finally, Stefan, you can include my Laimun Safarjali recipe in that

section. It is a beverage syrup of lemon and quince juice flavored

with rosewater which i made from scratch for my Persian course in the

Principality of the Mists Fall Investiture Iron Chef Feast. I will

send it to you directly. Folks can also find it on my website:

http://home.earthlink.net/~lilinah/2001_Feasts/

persianrecipes.html#quince

 

The original is also in the Book of the Description of Familiar

Foods, on pp. 442-443 of "Medieval Arab Cookery".

 

Turns out this is still made and i bought a bottle of the Sadaf

brand. It was tasty, but i was spoiled by my homemade kind, so i

doctored the commercial syrup with fresh lemon juice and rose water.

 

Anahita

 

 

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Date: November 20, 2004 1:14:39 PM CST

To: StefanliRous at austin.rr.com

Subject: Lemon-Quince-Rosewater Syrup

 

Hi, Stefan:

 

Here's the recipe i said i'd send you for the Florilegium - just cut along the dotted line :-)

 

Anahita

----------------------------------------------------------------

 

Laimun Safarjali - Lemon-Quince-Rosewater Beverage Syrup

 

I cooked a totally period mostly Persian course for the Principality of the Mists Fall Investiture Iron Chef Feast 2001. When I was shopping for ingredients, I went to a Persian food store. I searched the shelves in hopes of finding a (synthetic) musk flavored extract or syrup called for in a couple recipes. I didn't find any. But much to my surprise, I found a bottle of Lemon-Quince syrup from an American Persian food supplier. I bought it to taste test. It was delicious. My homemade syrup was even more delicious.

 

Original:

 

One part quince juice and three parts filtered syrup, in both of which you have boiled pieces of quince until nearly done. They are taken up, and the syrup takes it consistency. To every pound of the whole you add two ounces of lemon juice. Then return the pieces of quince; they improve the consistency. It is scented with musk, saffron and rose-water and taken up and used.

-- from "The Book of the Description of Familiar Foods", trans. Charles Perry, p. 442-443, in "Medieval Arab Cookery", Prospect Books, 2001.

 

My Recipe:

 

2 dozen medium to large quinces

5 to 8 pounds granulated white sugar

1 tsp. crumbled saffron threads

juice of 12 lemons

4 capfuls of Cortas brand rosewater

(you may need to adjust for other brands of rosewater)

 

1. Cut quinces in quarters. Core and remove flower and stem ends. Cut further into eighths (that is, each quince is ultimately cut in eight pieces).

 

2. Put quinces in deep kettle, cover with water and turn fire to high.

 

3. Pour in 5 lb. sugar. Stir well.

 

4. When liquid begins to boil, reduce fire to medium and continue to simmer, stirring frequently so bottom of pan doesn't burn.

 

5. Do NOT mash the quinces. I did and it was a BIG mistake. I did not get enough syrup, although the mashed quinces tasted delicious.

 

6. Put crumbled saffron threads in a small dish and just barely cover with hot water. Soak at least 15 minutes.

 

7. When liquid has thickened and has become a lovely amber-rose color - many hours later - remove from heat, stir in saffron, and allow to cool.

 

8. When cool, put a strainer over a deep bowl, and begin scooping quinces and liquid out of the pot and into the strainer. Allow to strain without mashing or pressing fruit. Remove resulting liquid to another large container.

 

9. After you've drained the quinces well, and syrup has cooled thoroughly, check the consistency and flavor. It should be syrupy and have a tart-sweet flavor. It doesn't need to be clear. In fact, the original recommends having some fruity bits in it, so you can add some mashed quince at this point. If syrup isn't sweet enough, put in kettle on high fire, add more sugar, stir well, bring to boil, then reduce to high simmer, and cook down a little more.

 

10. When syrup is thoroughly cooled, stir in lemon juice and rose water.

 

11. Store in refrigerator.

 

12. To drink, fill a pitcher about 2/3 full of water and add a bit of syrup. Taste. Add more syrup until you are satisfied. It should have a sweet-tart flavor, redolent of quinces and roses. The commercial syrup is much denser than mine and was recommended to be diluted 1 part syrup to 5 parts water. I think mine worked at about 1 part syrup to three parts water.

 

By al-Sayyida Anahita al-Qurtubiyya bint 'abd al-Karim al-Fassi

 

 

Date: Mon, 31 Jan 2005 14:09:39 -0800

From: lilinah at earthlink.net

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] middle eastern food questions

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

Stefan wrote:

>> There was a bottle of something labeled "Jallab Syrup".  The information

>> was in Arabic, and the owner was busy with other customers so I didn't

>> want to bother him. Is this one of the syrups that are used to make

>> beverages?

>

> Yes, although I believe "jalab" is a general term and could mean any

> one of a number of flavors.

 

We had a fairly recent discussion on this list about the terms

sekanjabin, jalab, and sharbat.

 

My research in a number of Medieval Near and Middle Eastern cookbooks

and a number of modern Near and Middle Eastern and South Asian

cookbooks indicates that:

 

1.) Jalab/jalap is *not* a generic term, but the name of a rather

specific drink syrup. The beverage usually contains rosewater, sugar

syrup, and dates, and is served sprinkled with pine nuts.

 

2.) Sekanjabin is *not* a generic term. It is a Near or Middle

Eastern oxymel, i.e., contains vinegar and honey (literally) or sugar

(more commonly). If a beverage liquid/syrup is not an oxymel, it is

not sekanjabin. I have found, however, that way too many SCAdians use

"sekanjabin" as a generic term for a Medieval Near or Middle Eastern

- or modern SCA invented - beverage syrup with darn near any set of

ingredients, usually with NO vinegar.

 

3.) Sharbat *is* a generic term for Medieval and modern Near and

Middle Eastern, and even South Asian beverage syrups. BTW, the word

is the source of a somewhat archaic English term "shrub" for a

non-alcoholic fruit beverage and sherbet/sorbet (note - no "r" in the

second syllable - does not rhyme with "herbert").

 

Anahita

 

 

Date: Mon, 31 Jan 2005 17:23:43 -0500

From: Jadwiga Zajaczkowa / Jenne Heise <jenne at fiedlerfamily.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] middle eastern food questions

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

> We had a fairly recent discussion on this list about the terms

> sekanjabin, jalab, and sharbat.

>

> My research in a number of Medieval Near and Middle Eastern cookbooks

> and a number of modern Near and Middle Eastern and South Asian

> cookbooks indicates that:

>

> 1.) Jalab/jalap is *not* a generic term, but the name of a rather

> specific drink syrup. The beverage usually contains rosewater, sugar

> syrup, and dates, and is served sprinkled with pine nuts.

 

However, in near-period European useage, there is a term 'julep' or

'juleb' that applies to drinks made with syrups:

 

See OED: "

[a. F. julep (14th c. in Hatz.-Darm.), in Pr. julep, Sp. and Pg. julepe,

It. giulebbe, giulebbo, med.L. julapium, ad. Arab. jul{amac}b, a. Pers.

gul-{amac}b rose-water, f. gul rose + {amac}b water.]

 

     1. A sweet drink prepared in different ways; often, simply a liquid

sweetened with syrup or sugar, and used as a vehicle for medicine;

sometimes, a medicated drink used as a demulcent, .comforting., or

gently stimulating mixture.

 

1400 Lanfranc's Cirurg. 76 To {ygh}eue him in {th}e bigynnynge

Iulep{em}{th}at is a sirup maad oonly of water & of sugre. 1543 TRAHERON

Vigo's Chirurg. V. ii. 163 Vse them with a iuleb of vyolettes. c1550

LLOYD Treas. Health (1585) Fij, Iuleb is a cleare potyon made of dyuerse

waters and suger. 1597-8 BP. HALL Sat. II. iv. 27 The wholesome julap,

whose receat Might his diseases lingring force defeat. 1619 S. JEROME

Origen's Repent. in Farr S.P. Jas. I (1848) 245 It surmounts all

juloups. a1625 FLETCHER Hum. Lieut. II. ii, The gentleman no doubt will

fall to his jewlips. "

 

Cf: Culpeper's English Physitian:

 

"1. Juleps were first invented as I suppose in Arabia, and my reason is

because the word Juleb is an Arabick word.

 

2. It signifies only a pleasant Potion, and was vulgarly used (by such

as were sick and wanted help, or such as were in health, and wanted no

money) to quench thirst.

 

3. Now a daies 'tis commonly used,

 

[p. 248]

 

     1. To prepare the Body for Purgation.

     2. To open Obstructions and the Pores.

     3. To digest tough Humors.

     4. To qualifie hot distempers &c.

 

4. It is thus made (I mean Simple Juleps for I have nothing to say to

Compounds here; all Compounds have as many several Idea's as men have

crotchets in their Brain) I say Simple Juleps are thus made: Take a pint

of such distilled Water as conduceth to the cure of your distemper,

which this Treatise will plentifully furnish you withal, to which add

two ounces of Syrup conducing to the same effect (I shall give you Rules

for it in the last Chapter) mix them together and drink a draught of it

at your pleasure; If you love tart things ad ten drops of Oyl of Vitriol

to your pint and shake it together, and it will have a fine grateful

tast.

 

5. All Juleps are made for present use, and therefore it is in vain to

speak of their duration. "

 

-- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

 

 

Date: Mon, 17 Apr 2006 01:04:56 -0400

From: Jadwiga Zajaczkowa / Jenne Heise <jenne at fiedlerfamily.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re: Sca-cooks Digest Jadwiga's Ginger Syrup

        recipe

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

> Oooooooooooh. this is one I missed!1 Recipe please?

 

Lemon-ginger syrup... note, while syrups and jalabs can be documented to

period, this one isn't a documented example:

 

2.5 cups water

4 cups sugar

 

Dissolve together and bring to a boil, while you begin peeling and

chopping up a 4-5" long piece of fresh ginger.

 

When sugar mixture reaches a boil, add 1 cup lemon juice and reduce to a

simmer. Add ginger as it becomes peeled and cut up (I cut mine into 1/4"

thick slices and then into 1/2" dice to make candy of later).

 

Simmer mixture until reduced by about 1/3.

 

Remove from heat, cover, and leave overnight.

 

Strain out pieces of ginger and bottle. (You can boil the ginger pieces

in soft-ball-stage sugar syrup for candied ginger).

 

To serve, mix to taste with water (about 1 part syrup to 6-8 parts

water).

--

-- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

 

 

Date: Fri, 20 Jul 2007 02:13:52 -0400

From: "Nick Sasso" <grizly at mindspring.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Concentrated drinks shelf life

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

-----Original Message-----

Years if the syrup has enough sugar in it.  This discussion has come

up here periodically. There are first hand accounts in this file of

five years or more of storing (and forgetting about) some sekanjabin

and it still being good.> > > >

 

In case anyone is interested, the fancy term for this is "water activity

level".  After enough dissolved solids, the microbes just basically explode

or dissolve on contacting the substance due to water being succeed out of it

by osmosis.  Oversimplification, I know, but it gives a little added  

texture that no one really asked for.

 

niccolo difrancesco

 

 

Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 07:43:27 -0700

From: Britt <tierna.britt at gmail.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Concentrated drinks shelf life

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

 

On 9/28/07, Mairi Ceilidh <jjterlouw at earthlink.net> wrote:

> I don't even refrigerate it, and it keeps for months. Yeah, I "lost" a

> bottle in the pantry several years ago.  It was probably a year or  

> so old when I found it.  Still good.  Vinegar is a wonderful thing.

>

> Mairi Ceilidh

>

> I made some sekanjabin and some syrup of lemons today for Pennsic, and when

> I took them downstairs to the fridge, I discovered that we still have a lot

> of sekanjabin syrup from last year.  It's perfectly clear and smells

> completely normal, but my husband is worried that it might not be  

> any good. I seem to

> remember that sugar syrups are pretty stable and don't  really even need to

> be stored in the fridge, but will last for a long time.  Anybody  

> have any ideas how long this stuff will last?

 

Mine's five years old, made with cider vinegar and turbinado. Still as

strong as ever, still good. When I worked in food service we used to

filter cloudy malt vinegar through a coffee filter and put it back on

the tables. I do same with my vinegars and probably would if the

sekanjabin got cloudy.

 

But when verjuice goes, man, you can tell it's gone.  It grows a

'something' spongy in the middle of the bottle. Which is another

reason I just snort lightly at settlings in vinegar and use it anyway.

 

I have seen dead stuff, and it was scary.

 

- Teceangl

 

 

Date: Thu, 11 Oct 2007 15:50:48 -0700

From: Lilinah <lilinah at earthlink.net>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Sekanjabeen

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

On another SCA list, the topic of sekanjabeen came up. I erroneously wrote:

>> The only period recipe for it translated into English is in the 13th

>>  C. Andalusian cookbook, and it does not include mint. Here's the

>> original recipe: (snipped)

 

And a listee named Asma replied:

> Actually, there is a second period recipe.  It is a 9th century one

> that comes from _The Small Dispensatory_ written by Sabur ibn Sahl,

> and translated by Oliver Kahl in 2003.

 

(due to Giano's kindness i actually have a copy of this, and although

i read through it, i didn't remember the sekanjabeen recipe)

 

Here's the original recipe from the Small Dispensatory:

 

The preparation of sugar-and-honey-in-one oxymel which is useful

against fevers and thirst and clears the stomach.

 

You take ten ratl of good aged wine vinegar and pour it over about

twenty ratl of pure fresh water, more or less depending on how acid

and how exquisite the vinegar is; add from the root peels of fennel

and celery three uqiya each and from the seeds of fennel and anise

one uqiya each, but wash it all in water before soaking it in the

liquid, and leave that for a day and a night, after that cook it on a

low flame until one sixth of it vanishes; then take it off the fire,

and leave it to cool; then strain it through a cloth of cotton, let

two parts of  this decoction from water and vinegar and roots and

seeds share one part of white sugar candy and add for each two and a

half parts of it one part honey water, cook that over a low flame

until one half of it is left, take it of the fire, let it cool ,

strain it, and use it after having previously skimmed the froth off

of it.

 

The extracted ingredients are;

good aged wine vinegar

pure fresh water

fennel root peels

celery root peels

fennel seeds

anise seeds

white sugar candy (this may be fanid, for which there are surviving  

recipes)

honey water

 

Asma continued:

> The resulting sikanjabin is very tasty, and has a slight liquorice

> flavor.  _The Small Dispensatory_ has a whole section dealing with

> beverages, although some of the are more medicinal than the one above.

> The really nice thing about this source is that since it is a medical

> text, the directions and the quantities are really precise, so it is

> possible to work directly from the original text.

 

In al-Kindi's 9th C. Medicinal Formulary, sekanjabeen is an

ingredient in a topical application to cure baldness and an

ingredient for a tooth cleaning powder, although i haven't found a

recipe in the Formulary for sekanjabeen.

 

And in Chapter One of the Medicinal Formulary of al-Samarqandi (early

13th C.), there is a lengthy discussion about sekanjabeen (translated

by Levey as "oxymel"), including that it "...is beneficial in acute

fevers since it calms the heat..."

 

Al-Samarqandi further notes:

"The ratio of its parts differs from one to another because of the

difference in vinegar and sugar, depending on the heat of the fever,

its humor, and the attributes of the nature of the drinker. In this

regard, the kind made from vinegar sharply sour with a double

quantity of very white sugar, cooked finely, is good to drink for

fevers which are extremely acute and hot. is good for those who can

endure it and do not dislike it. The viscous kind made from strong

wine vinegar with three times it of red sugar is for compound fevers

from yellow bile and phlegm. The vinegar may also be reduced from

that to the ratio of one fifth or less. It is necessary that the

sugar be washed a little at first, then thrown into the pot; on it

the vinegar is poured. It is placed over a slow burning fire until

the sugar dissolves. Then water in the same amount, more or less, is

poured on it according to the requirement. It is boiled, and then its

froth is removed. Honey is not good for acute fevers; it is effective

for the compound ones whose humors are cold. The ratio of the vinegar

to the honey depends on the thickness of their humors, viscosity,

thinness, and strength of putrefaction. The vinegar cools and quiets;

honey is a warming and easing agent.

 

"...The seedy oxymel is a compound with seeds to increase its

capability to open obstructions. In acute fevers, cold seeds are used

but in the fevers whose humor is cold and in the case of other

illnesses, then hot seeds are indicated. In the compounded ones, with

hot and cold together, one is concerned with the ratios as regard to

those of the humors and the organs. For example, if it is to be taken

for acute fevers, choleric humors, and for venal obstructions, then

it is made up of seed of the endive and the rind of the root, the

seed of cucumbers, and the water melon seed so that it is from seeds

which are cold and cause diuresis; it is especially effective against

blockage of the veins and for allowing the bile to flow."

 

This goes on for 2-1/2 more pages in the translation, with several

recipes for medicinal sekanjabeen.

 

One recipe includes:

fennel root rind

celery root rind

marshmallow root rind

caper root rind

fennel seeds

celery seeds

hyssop

"sticky fig"

raisins without seeds

 

along with vinegar and sugar

 

Depending on the ailment, galangal may be added, or blue lily root,

lily root, and maiden hair (a fern), or violet, marshmallow seeds,

quince seed, jujube, sebesten (a fruit, Cordia Myxa, which is still

used in herbal medicine in the Middle East and India), and poppy.

 

Let me add that the beverage al-Samarqandi thinks is best is pure  

clear water.

--

Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)

the persona formerly known as Anahita

 

<the end>



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