Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous

August 25th, 2010

Dimah - http://www.orangeblossomwater.net - Sharab Al-'Eriq Sous 500 94

Licorice or liquorice is the root of Glycyrrhiza glabra is an herbaceous perennial plant which grows in Mediterranean countries from Anatolia to Spain. The plants grow to 50-120 cm and have bluish purple flowers.

Licorice plants are widespread in Syria, particularly in Al-Raqqa governorate. Syrian licorice is considered one of the best in the world and is referred to as Euphrates licorice.

Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous (Licorice drink) is one of the most important drinks in Ramadan. In Syria, sous vendor walks around old market places and allies, wearing his traditional outfit and carrying the drink in a container on his back. Licorice drink is produced by moistening the roots. Afterward, they are wrapped in cloth and soaked slowly in water.

Let’s make Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous:

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1. Bring dried licorice roots, and measure 50 g of it.

2. Put dried licorice roots in a bowl.

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5, 6. Add baking soda to dried licorice roots.

7, 8. Add 50 ml water to dried licorice roots.

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9, 10, 11. Mix ingredients with your hand until dried licorice roots are moistened with water.

12. Add orange blossom water to the mixture and mix.

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13. Set the bowl aside for 1 hour, I put it on the counter where there is sun.

14. After 1 hour, bring the moistened licorice roots.

15. Prepare a clean cotton cloth.

16. Spread moistened licorice roots on the cloth.

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17, 18, 19, 20. Wrap the cloth.

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21, 22. Put the cloth in a jug, and add 500 ml water to the jug.

23, 24. Put the jug in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

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25, 26, 27, 28. After 24 hours, take the cloth out of the jug and discard the roots.

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29, 30, 31. Add 600 ml water to the jug.

32, 33, 34, 35, 36. Pour the licorice drink from a distance to another jug as you see in the picture. This method is called “Tashri’e”

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37, 38. Pouring the drink from a distance will produce a foam and that’s what we need.

39, 40. Repeat the process and pour the drink again from a distance to another jug.

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41, 42, 43, 44. Repeat the process again and pour the drink from a distance to another jug. So you have to repeat the process “Tashri’e” several times by pouring the drink from a distance from one jug to another.

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45, 46, 47, 48. Pour licorice drink from a distance to glasses.

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49. Serve Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous cold.

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Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous

From: Family Recipe/ Servings: 4 People
PDF Text Only / Print With Images

50 g crushed dried licorice roots

2 pinches baking soda

1150 ml water

2 tsp orange blossom water

Bring dried licorice roots, and measure 50 g of it.

Put dried licorice roots in a bowl.

Add baking soda to dried licorice roots.

Add 50 ml water to dried licorice roots.

Mix ingredients with your hand until dried licorice roots are moistened with water.

Add orange blossom water to the mixture and mix.

Set the bowl aside for 1 hour, I put it on the counter where there is sun.

After 1 hour, bring the moistened licorice roots.

Prepare a clean cotton cloth.

Spread moistened licorice roots on the cloth.

Wrap the cloth.

Put the cloth in a jug, and add 500 ml water to the jug.

Put the jug in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

After 24 hours, take the cloth out of the jug and discard the roots.

Add 600 ml water to the jug.

Pour the licorice drink from a distance to another jug as you see in the picture. This method is called “Tashri’e”.

Pouring the drink from a distance will produce a foam and that’s what we need.

Repeat the process and pour the drink again from a distance to another jug.

Repeat the process again and pour the drink from a distance to another jug. So you have to repeat the process “Tashri’e” several times by pouring the drink from a distance from one jug to another.

Pour licorice drink from a distance to glasses.

Serve Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous cold.

Notes and Tips

Click here and here for larger photos of crushed dried licorice roots. To know more about the grades of licorice roots read here and you will notice from the information that the licorice I used for this recipe is known as “Dried Licorice Root Crushed Tea Grade” or as “Dried Licorice Roots Fine Cut or Tea Bag Cut”.

After moistening the licorice (steps 7 – 12), the traditional method is to spread licorice in a tray and left in the sun for 1 hour, click here to see the method.

After wrapping the moistened licorice (steps 15 – 20) ,the traditional method is to put the cloth on a colander under running water but the water should run very slowly, or to put the cloth on a colander and add water to it using a jug, click here to see two methods.

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6 Responses to “Sharab Al-‘Eriq Sous”

  1. Dimah

    I don’t think I have ever had this drink! I love the photo of the vendor, how exotic! I was surprised the drink does not contain any sugar.

  2. Dimah says:

    tasteofbeirut: Thank you for stopping by!
    Licorice is naturally sweet, it has two compounds:
    Anethol: sweet tasting compound.
    Glycyrrhizin: a compound sweeter than sugar.

  3. I bought some Syrian licorice to make this drink and really enjoyed it, but would not have thought to add the orange blossom water.

    I am sorry I have not been by in a while. I sue my RSS feed to track updates and the last update I had for you was early July – I had thought life got in the way. So glad I checked.

  4. Dimah says:

    oystercultur: Thank you for visiting! next time try to add orange blossom water to the drink :)

  5. Fatima says:

    Hi,
    I really enjoy this site with the beautiful pictures and all. Thanks for you work. One question: do you know exactly why baking soda is added to the licorice drink? My uncle says it makes it darker, but I am not convinced. Does it have any other effect? Some people cringe at the thought of adding BS to their drink.

    • Dimah says:

      Fatima: I’m glad to know that you like my blog and the recipes, thanks for your kind words !
      Your uncle is right. Yes, baking soda is used to make licorice drink darker.

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