Sharab El Toot – Making Mulberry Syrup

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Sharab el Toot is one of Lebanon’s most traditional drinks; a thirst quencher served to guests on hot summer afternoons.

It is an exotic, revitalizing, wholesome drink that is sweet yet tangy and is rich with antioxidants.

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There is also a  history that comes with Mulberry syrup, delving back into Lebanon’s past…

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At the turn of the century, Lebanon was known for its high-quality silk industry.  Bestowed with ideal climate and a fertile soil, Mulberries were planted everywhere in Lebanon and mulberry production flourished. The leaves of the mulberry were used to cultivate silk worms and at harvest would be separated from the mother fruit. As the mulberry fruit has a short life span, Sharab El Toot was an efficient way of preserving it.

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Sharab el toot is served diluted with ice water.

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It is also common to use mulberries to make ice cream and Jam. Sharab el toot is heavenly drizzled atop ice cream.

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Sharab El Toot- Mulberry Syrup

We harvested about 8kg of mulberries. From that we got 4 litres of juice or about 16 cups. Because we are making a syrup we added 2x the amount of sugar, unlike when making jam where the ratio is 1 to 1. This came out to be around 34 cups or 8kg of sugar. This yielded 8 bottles of 1 liter volume or 8 litres of Sharab el toot.

The procedure is as follows;

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Select fully ripe fresh black mulberries, discarding the red berries as they render the syrup too sour. Wear rubber gloves as the juice stains the hands.

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Place a food mill over an enamel or earthenware pot, fill with berries and begin turning it to extract the juice. Alternatively, put the berries in a muslin bag and press the juice from them into an enamel or earthenware pot.

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This will leave the seeds and skins, or residue. Discard.

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Once you’ve extracted the juice, run it through a sieve to remove any remaining large chunks of the fruit.

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P.S. We did not throw away this bit, but added some of the juice, some sugar and made it into jam. Turned out very well.

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Now the juice should be very smooth. Measure the juice.

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For every cup of juice add two cups of sugar. Stir well. Using only a wooden spoon.

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Boil over a high fire until somewhat thickened. Remove the froth that develops. Juice should be cooked in a glass or enamelware saucepan to avoid discoloration to the syrup.

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Remember to continuously stir, so not to let the syrup burn or pour out. That would be a terrible mess to have.

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Bottle when tepid and seal when thoroughly cold. Open bottles of syrup should be stored in the refrigerator.

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Use a tablespoon of syrup per glass of ice water when preparing the beverage. Increase according to taste.


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Pour over ice water.

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Stir well.

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Add ice cubes…

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Serve

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22 Responses to “Sharab El Toot – Making Mulberry Syrup”
  1. Global Patriot 14 September 2009 at 12:49 pm #

    As I’m feeling lazy at the moment, I just want to know where I can buy a jar of this delicious Mulberry Syrup! (or do I need to take a trip to Lebanon!)

  2. chris 14 September 2009 at 1:36 pm #

    Simply refreshing…Stunning pictures!

    • Craig 2 December 2012 at 1:47 pm #

      Yum! I’ll have to try it, we have a mulberry tree in our bkcyaard. We have to trim ours down though because a branch is over the neighbors driveway and he complains that they mess up his space. Maybe I should make him a pie![]

  3. jocy 14 September 2009 at 7:06 pm #

    I have been waiting for this post! SO stocked! Thanks DKS

  4. Abdul Latif Shamsudoha 15 September 2009 at 3:22 pm #

    Finished making this earlier today! The recipe is so straight forward (which was a blessing, since I’m only a guest in my kitchen) and the end product was absolutely wonderful to drink. Thank you for sharing this! :)

  5. Duncan 15 September 2009 at 6:04 pm #

    yum !

  6. Bethany 16 September 2009 at 12:39 pm #

    Mark- you can get some from aldoukan.com delivered anywhere in the world

    Abdul- Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback! Enjoy :)

  7. deeba 17 September 2009 at 10:31 am #

    Just brilliant. Now I know what to do with the oodles of mulberries that my Man Friday will get when the season begins. Very very refreshing…a beautiful post & gorgeous pictures!

  8. Hélène 17 September 2009 at 4:46 pm #

    I love that you tood pics to explain. This drink looks so good. I haven’t heard about it before.

  9. Joe 18 September 2009 at 4:00 pm #

    I LOVED the pics of the man harvesting from the tree! how cool to show it literally from scratch!! good job

  10. Bethany 25 September 2009 at 10:07 pm #

    Deeba- I can’t wait for you to make this into a baking post! Will be delicious I know!
    Helene- Thanks. It’s an old process from back in early 1900′s when we were under french mandate.
    Joe- Thanks :)

  11. The Purple Foodie 26 September 2009 at 6:21 am #

    Oh Bethany, you make me crave for the mulberries. I wish they were in season here! Gorgeous photos!

  12. SydneyCider 2 December 2009 at 11:05 am #

    Hi Bethany

    I love the pictures! I am so happy that someone has captured this process in its entirety. Also, I am so happy that I’ve discovered yet another Lebanese food blogger. I don’t have to feel so alone in this world any more hehe.

    Where were these photos taken?

    Yalla, see you soon

    Fouad

    • Bethany 2 December 2009 at 12:55 pm #

      Hello Fouad and thanks for stopping by! The pictures were taken in Lebanon at our mountain home in Ayoun (just above Baskinta or directly below Sannine.) I love sharab el tout and it was lovely being able to take snaps of the whole process.

  13. valentina 2 August 2010 at 8:03 am #

    How amazing. I wonder if I have seen mulberry before and got it confused with blackberry. Loved this post. Thanks for sharing it darling.x

  14. Rayan 9 August 2010 at 12:05 pm #

    Hi I just wanted to know what karnoob and toot is in English

    • Phillip 12 February 2011 at 12:37 am #

      Karnoob is a pod from which molasses are made. Toot are mulberries.

  15. chadi 11 August 2011 at 6:18 am #

    my mom loves this stuff, but can only get it when she visits family in lebanon. where can i get it for her? she likes both the kharnoob and toot but i cant seem to find anyone that sells it already made. any help would be appreciated.

    chadi1980@aol.com

  16. tastelebanon (@tastelebanon) 23 February 2013 at 9:08 am #

    Sharab El Toot- How to make Mulberry Syrup one of Lebanon’s more traditional & refreshing drinks http://t.co/jkl8QaIteL

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Roscommon Acres » Blog Archive » How to make mulberry syrup - June 17, 2010

    [...] then I finally found this, a recipe for Sharab El Toot. And for the homeschooler in me, it was a wonderfully educational adventure to incorporate into the [...]

  2. Foraging For Free Food – Mulberry Cordial – The Food Blog - November 7, 2010

    [...] But back to the cordial, making it is easy and black mulberries are ideal – they have the right balance of sweet and sour; but I had to make do with pink mulberries. The end result turned out just fine, but in hindsight, I should have doubled the amount of citric acid. Use a mouli to juice the berries and for every cup of juice, use 2 cups of sugar. Stick the mixture in a pot and heat to dissolve the sugar. Before it gets too hot, add citric acid to taste. You want it sweet but sharp. Bring the mixture to 102 degrees Celsius, skim any froth and pour into a clean bottle. Close the bottle when the mixture is tepid. Serve diluted with water, on ice. The cordial keeps well at room temperature, but once the bottle is opened, store it in the fridge. For some fantastic photos of the whole process and how it’s done in Lebanon, see Bethany’s fantastic post. [...]

  3. Preserving mulberries #2 (Morus nigra): Mulberry honey cordial « The Forager's Year - October 14, 2012

    [...] that it be given a go (my favoured are from Lebanese Sydneysider Fouad Kassab and the UK-based Bethany Khehdy whom he cites). Why Lebanese, you may ask. Well, apparently mulberries were grown in large numbers [...]

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