This Aab Talebi (Cantaloupe Smoothie) is a refreshing and nutritious drink that makes a great breakfast as well as a cooling midday snack. It is a delicious and creamy smoothie that is also very healthy. Cantaloupe is one of the most popular melons that grows in different parts of the world including Africa, Europe, India, Iran, and U.S. It is loved for its juicy sweetness and numerous health benefits. Cantaloupe is believed to have anti inflammatory properties, and it is a powerful antioxidant that boosts the immune system.
Aab Talebi translates to “cantaloupe water!” You can’t walk on any major street in Iran during summer months and not see a store or two with advertisements on their window for fresh Aab Talebi. It is refreshing and simply one of the best remedies for hot days. The Iranian Aab Talebi is usually made with cantaloupes, crushed ice and sugar.
My Aab Talebi has a little bit more to it than just cantaloupe and crushed ice. I start out with a well chilled cantaloupe. I mix in a little bit of whole fat yogurt, which makes it very creamy with a guilt free pleasure. Another bonus of yogurt is that it helps the smoothie keep its consistency without separating into fruit pulp on top and liquid in the bottom!
I also add a bit of honey for extra sweetness, which you can leave out if your cantaloupe is super sweet. What makes this smoothie different from others is the exotic essence of rosewater in the mix with a light sprinkle of ground cardamom on top. I grind the aromatic whole cardamom pods in a small coffee grinder, so I don’t waste any part of this amazing spice that I’m very fond of!
Aab Talebi is a favorite drink in Persian households too! If you visit a friend’s house in Iran on a hot day, chances are that you’re going to be greeted with a cold frosty mug of this delectable summer drink. Enjoy it and don’t forget to say “kheili mamnun, dast e shoma dard nakoneh!” Word by word translation: “I appreciate it very much, may your hands never hurt.” :)) The actual meaning: “I thank you for the trouble that you went through to make the Aab talebi.”
You will need a high power blender to make this smoothie
- Half of a refrigerated cantaloupe (or honeydew melon)
- ¼ cup firm whole fat plain yogurt (or Greek yogurt)
- 1 TBSP honey
- ½ cup ice cold water
- 1-2 tsp rosewater
- Ground cardamom, to be sprinkled on top
- Cut a well chilled cantaloupe in half. Use a spoon to scoop out and discard the seeds.
- Save one of the halves for a later use. Peel and discard the skin. Cut up the cantaloupe in pieces that would fit inside the chamber of your blender.
- Add the cantaloupe, yogurt, honey, rosewater and water to the chamber of your blender. Process until very smooth.
- Pour into glasses and sprinkle the top with ground cardamom.
Whole cardamom pods may be purchased at Persian/Middle Easter/Indian markets.
Use a small electric coffee grinder or a mortar and pestle to grind the whole cardamom pods.