Iranian/Persian Sekahnjebin (Vinegar-Mint Summer Drink)

April 15, 2013
Author Notes

Iranians are renowned for their hospitality. If you visit an Iranian house on a hot summer day, you will most likely be served a cold sugary drink (sharbat) of some variety (sour cherry, key lime, quince, etc). You might not think that you need a sharbat but after taking a few sips you will realize that it hit the spot and that is exactly what you needed coming in from the heat.

One such summer drink is sharbat Sekahnjebin (or serkeh-angabin, literally translated "vinegar syrup"). The prepared syrup in poured into a tall glass, topped with ice water and grated cucumbers, and garnished with fresh mint.

Sekhanjebin syrup is also used as a dip for young leaves of romaine lettuce for nibbling at backyard parties and picnics.

I like to cut my grapefruit in half, drizzle it with this syrup, and eat it with a grapefruit spoon. —cookingProf

  • Makes about two cups
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 large bouquet of fresh mint
  • 1/3 cup apple cider or white vinegar
  • a few sprigs of fresh mint for garnish
  • 2-3 tablespoons grated cucumbers for each drink
In This Recipe
  1. Put the sugar and water in a 2-quart steel pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the sugar melts, add the vinegar and let it boil for 5-7 minutes over medium heat.
  2. Remove the pot from the stove and drop the mint bouquet in the hot syrup. Cover the pot and let the syrup cool completely. Remove and discard the mint and pour the syrup into a jar. The syrup will keep for a long time in the pantry.
  3. To make the drink, pour about 3-4 ounces of syrup in each glass and top with ice cubes and water. Add 2-3 tablespoons of grated cucumbers and garnish with sprigs of fresh mint.

See Reviews

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • susan g
    susan g
  • hardlikearmour
  • creamtea
  • Marisa R
    Marisa R
  • cookingProf

Recipe by: cookingProf

I was gifted with the love for cooking as a very young girl growing up in Tehran. I would follow my grandmother to the fresh produce market every day in summer days and help carry her basket home. I would then stand around at her foot in the kitchen and she would reward me with delicious morsels of the food she was cooking. My two prominent occupations/preoccupations are cooking and teaching computer science/writing computer programs. I find both equally rewarding.