Binnur's Turkish Cookbook - Delicious, healthy and easy-to-make Ottoman & Turkish recipes

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Rose Sherbet

(Gül Şerbeti)

Rose Sherbet
4 fragrant petals of a leafy Rose, red or pink
3-4 tbsp sugar (you can add more if you prefer it sweeter)
1 cup water
1 tsp lemon juice

Place rose petals and sugar in a medium sized bowl. Crush the petals with the sugar using your hand until the petals break down well enough. Add lemon juice and water. Stir until the sugar dissolves.

Cover the bowl and leave in the fridge* for at least 4-5 hours. Drain over a bowl using a strainer. Serve with ice cubes.

* I prefer to leave this drink in the fridge over night. The taste and colour are much better in this way.

Rose Petals

1 tsp rose water
2 tbsp sugar (you can add more if you prefer it sweeter)
1 tsp lemon juice
1 cup water
One drop of pink food coloring

Combine all the ingredients and blend with an egg whisker or a blender. Leave in the fridge* for at least 4-5 hours. Serve with ice cubes.

Makes 1 glass.

Meal Ideas:
- Tarhana Soup, Pilaf with Lamb, Eggplant with Veggie Filling, Chicken with Walnuts and Turkish Baklava.

What is Sherbet?

Sherbet "şerbet" is the world's first soft drink. Ottoman Turks drank sherbet before and during each meal. There was no custom of drinking water during the meal; sherbet or compote taken in the end replaced the water in the Palaces. Sultans drank fruit juice, lime juice or a sherbet during meals. They used an embroidered porcelain or coconut shell spoon placed on a special open box.

Sherbet is also served during Ramadan in crystal bowls or in tall cut glasses, or ornamented (with gilt flowers) glasses with ice cubes or snow. The sherbet glasses should be placed on a tray covered with lace or a piece of embroidered cloth.

Sherbet is still a traditional cold drink in Turkey. It is believed that sherbet has healing effects. In the gardens of the Ottoman Palace, spices and fruits to be used in sherbets were grown up under the control of pharmacists and doctors of the Palace.

Traditionally cold sherbet is served on especially hot summer days to please visitors. Also at weddings or during childbirth to increase lactation of the mother. This type of sherbet is called "lohusa şerbeti (birth Sherbet)" which is crimson in colour and is flavored with cloves and herbs.

Sherbet is made from fruit juices or extracts of flowers or herbs, combined with sugar, water and ice or snow. Depending on the season, types of fruit sherbets include; pear, quince, strawberry, apple, kizilcik (cornelian cherry), mulberries, pomegranate, bergamot, mint, strawberry, orange, etc. There is also a honey sherbet and a green coloured violets sherbet which is made by pounding violet-flowers and then boiling them with sugar.


Ramadan is a very special month for Turks. Two meals, one before sunrise (sahur) and one after sundown (iftar) are taken during Ramadan, referred to as the Sultan of all other eleven months. Throughout the month, the kitchen is in constant activity. Under the Ottomans, the varieties of courses increased during Ramadan at home. Inviting relatives and friends to the Iftar meal is still in tradition. Using good china, lace table cloths and all copper pots and pans are expected.

Happy Ramadan! I am going to post traditional Ottoman-Turkish recipes for Iftar and Sahur with menus during the Ramadan month, so check back often:)



At 8:56 AM, Blogger Joanna said...

This is a lovely post, with lovely photographs. I'm going straight out to the garden to pick one of the new remaining scented roses!

Thanks for sharing

At 9:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's better when you prepare a recipe from other lands with culture's knowledge ... so, thanks for the info and to share with us about your culture .

At 7:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't wait for the Ramazan menus. Thank you for this lovely website. I look at it often.

At 4:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for this lovely recipe, I'm going to pick some roses today from my garden. I can't wait for your recipes for ramadan, we are going to visit my husband's family in Turkey in 2 weeks time during ramadan & want to be able to make them something (If my mother-in-law lets me).
Thank you

At 11:14 PM, Blogger Binnur said...

Thank you Joanna,Annie and Zeynep, you made me happy:)

At 2:26 PM, Blogger Binnur said...

When my daughter visits us I never let her come in the kitchen, I love to cook and pamper her:) Let her mother-in-low to do the same thing, enjoy with her lovely dishes:)

At 1:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


lovely posts and pictures! thank you for sharing your recipes... I have 1 question though about this sherbet drink (over here we called it 'Sharbat' ) the roses you used are so lovely pink! Can I use dried rose buds (like those sold in tea shops for tisanes) instead if I don't have fresh roses?

Happy Ramadan or as we said over here - 'Selamat Berpuasa' literally means Safe Fasting/Happy Fasting


At 12:58 AM, Blogger Binnur said...

Hi Pixen,
Thank you:) I've never used dry rose buds.. so would you like to buy a little amount and give it a try, btw use hot water:) If I can find it here I definitely will try...and post the result here....
Selamat Berpuasa!

At 7:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi binnur well im doing an international fair where my partner and I will be presenting Turkey, I really want to do this drink but by how much would you suggest I increse the ingredients to serve at least 45 or more people. PLEASE HELP!

At 9:49 PM, Blogger Binnur said...

My measurement is : 1 cup equals 1 glass. You should increase all the quantities multiplying by 45.
Take care,

At 5:25 PM, Anonymous Tania-Deria said...


pls help!

did you mean 4 petals or petals of 4 roses?

have you ever tried combining both rose water and the petals (I thought rose water might enhance the aroma) or is it too much?


At 8:30 PM, Blogger Binnur said...

It is only 4 petals for 1 cup of Rose Sherbet. You will use fragrant rose petals so do not add rose water:)

At 9:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Selam Binnur,
What should the consistency be of the drink after you have left it in the fridge for a couple of hours?

At 10:20 AM, Blogger Binnur said...

Selam Nalan,
Leaving in the fridge doesn't effect the consistency.

At 5:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Binnur, is the drink that you traditionally serve after a baby is born called "loğusa şerbeti"?? I remember it is red color and you serve it to guest when they visit the new baby? what is the recipe for that? Thanks, Laura

At 3:37 PM, Blogger Binnur said...

Hi Laura,
I may post it in the future.

At 9:22 AM, Anonymous Derya said...

I just came across your site today,

I'm also a Turkish-Canadian, I'm very proud to see you have publicly displayed what rich culture we have.

I look forward to purchasing your book :)

At 10:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This Lokks divine, I can't wait to pick some of the new spring roses. I want to make this for my mother's birthday :-)

At 11:12 PM, Blogger Binnur said...

This is really nice♥ to show your mother you understand and appreciate her:)


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