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Recipes

Asha's Kokum Sharbat, 3 ways

Recipe By: Asha Loupy

Serves 4

Asha's Kokum Sharbat, 3 ways
Photo by:  

Melati Citrawireja

Cool, tangy and highly refreshing, this sharbat—a style of drink beloved throughout the Indian diaspora, as well as the Persian diaspora—stars Konkan Kokum. This recipe can be as simple as soaking the kokum petals in lightly sweetened hot water until the dried fruit releases all of its sour goodness, but you can also add other flavorings. Try it with a bit of toasted cumin and Aranya Pepper to cool the palate down after a spicy meal and aid in digestion. Or, for a more floral version, try pairing the tart, cranberry-like kokum with fragrant Panneer Rose.

Serve over ice with a splash of chilled still or sparkling water. Or, channel your inner bartender, and use in cocktails. The Paneer Rose Kokum Sharbat is particularly drinkable with a little shot of vodka added or top with sparkling wine!

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Ingredients

For the kokum sharbat
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup granulated white sugar, plus more to taste
  • 7 petals Konkan Kokum
For the kokum cumin sharbat
For the kokum panneer rose sharbat
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup granulated white sugar, plus more to taste
  • 7 petals Konkan Kokum
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Panneer Rose

Methods

For the kokum sharbat
  1. Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Turn off the heat, stir in the kokum petals and allow to sit at room temperature for at least 2 hours. You can also transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Strain the sharbat through a fine mesh strainer into a small pitcher or 2-cup measuring cup, gently pressing on the kokum petals to extract every bit of sour juice. Reserve the soaked kokum petals for another use, or use to garnish your drink. Taste and adjust sugar, as necessary.
  3. To serve, add 1/4 cup sharbat to a small glass, fill with ice, and stir to chill the drink. Top with a splash of sparkling water, or for an alcoholic libation, add some vodka or top with sparkling wine.
For the kokum cumin sharbat
  1. Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Turn off the heat, stir in the kokum petals, cumin, pepper, and salt, and allow to sit at room temperature for at least 2 hours. You can also transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Strain the sharbat through a fine mesh strainer into a small pitcher or 2-cup measuring cup, gently pressing on the kokum petals to extract every bit of sour juice. Reserve the soaked kokum petals for another use, or use to garnish your drink. Taste and adjust sugar, as necessary.
  3. To serve, add 1/4 cup sharbat to a small glass, fill with ice, and stir to chill the drink. Top with a splash of cold still or sparkling water.
For the kokum rose sharbat
  1. Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Turn off the heat, stir in the kokum petals and panneer rose, and allow to sit at room temperature for at least 2 hours. You can also transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Strain the sharbat through a fine mesh strainer into a small pitcher or 2-cup measuring cup, gently pressing on the kokum petals to extract every bit of sour juice. Reserve the soaked kokum petals for another use, or use to garnish your drink. Taste and adjust sugar, as necessary. 
  3. To serve, add 1/4 cup sharbat to a small glass, fill with ice, and stir to chill the drink. Top with a splash of sparkling water, or for an alcoholic libation, add some vodka or top with sparkling wine.