Delicious Sima Recipe for a Refreshing Summer Drink

Get ready for a refreshing and delicious drink that will transport you straight to Finland. This is the Sima – Finnish Mead Recipe, a fermented lemonade that is typically enjoyed during the May Day celebrations in Finland, also known as Vappu.

Sima is a traditional spring drink that is mostly consumed during the 1st of May celebrations. It is a lemon flavored mead that has been brewed for centuries in Finland, and today, it has become a staple of Finnish culture.

This easy Finnish recipe combines honey, brown sugar, white sugar, and lemons to create a sweet and tart beverage that is perfect for any occasion. Sima is typically enjoyed with a funnel and a glass, and it is traditionally accompanied by raisins.

But why stick to tradition? With this recipe, you can experiment with different variations and substitutions to make it your own. Plus, Sima is a perfect alcoholic drink for brewing at home, especially if you’re a fan of sourdough or other fermented drinks.

So, whether you’re celebrating May Day or just looking for a refreshing and unique drink, this Finnish Mead Recipe is the perfect choice. Get ready to enjoy a taste of Finland with every sip of Sima!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Sima - Finnish Mead
Sima – Finnish Mead

Are you looking for a unique and refreshing drink to enjoy during the warmer months? Look no further than Sima – the traditional Finnish mead. Sima is a lemon-flavored mead that is mostly consumed during the Finnish May Day celebrations, but it’s a delicious drink that can be enjoyed all year round.

One of the reasons why you’ll love this recipe is that it’s easy to make with simple ingredients that you can find in your pantry. All you need is water, sugar, honey, lemons, and yeast. Sima is a fermented drink, similar to sourdough, which means that it requires some time to brew, but the result is well worth the wait.

Another reason why you’ll love this recipe is because it’s a versatile drink that you can customize to your own taste. You can adjust the sweetness by adding more or less sugar, honey, or molasses. You can also experiment with different flavors by adding fruits, herbs, or spices. Sima is a great base for a cocktail or a mocktail, and it pairs well with a variety of foods.

Finally, you’ll love this recipe because it’s a part of Finnish culture and tradition. Sima has been enjoyed for centuries during the May Day celebrations, and it’s a drink that brings people together. Making Sima is a fun and interactive activity that you can do with your family and friends, and it’s a great way to learn about Finnish culture and history.

In conclusion, Sima is an easy-to-make, versatile, and culturally significant drink that you’ll love. Whether you’re looking for a refreshing drink for a warm day or a unique drink to serve at a party, Sima is the perfect choice. So, gather your ingredients, follow the recipe, and enjoy a glass of Sima – the Finnish mead.

Ingredient List

“Sima: The Sweet Nectar of Finnish Tradition”

Let’s start by gathering all the ingredients for our Sima – Finnish Mead Recipe. This is a refreshing and easy Finnish fermented lemonade that is typically enjoyed during the May Day celebrations. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

For the Sima:

  • 14 cups (3.3 L) water
  • 1 cup (225 g) brown sugar
  • 1 cup (225 g) white sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) honey
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 teaspoons (12 g) dry yeast

For the Sima Finnish Lemon:

  • 12 ounces (355 ml) mineral water
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) honey
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon (5 g) dry yeast

For the Raisins Sima:

  • 14 cups (3.3 L) water
  • 1 cup (225 g) brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup (180 ml) white sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) honey
  • 2 lemons
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1 g) dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup (75 g) raisins

Make sure to have all the ingredients at hand before starting the recipe. You can find all of them in your local grocery store. Also, make sure to accurately measure the ingredients to ensure the perfect balance of flavors.

The Recipe How-To

Step 1: Gather Ingredients

Before you start brewing, make sure you have all the ingredients on hand. You will need:

  • 14 cups of water (3.3 liters)
  • 1 cup of brown sugar (220 g)
  • 1 cup of white sugar (200 g)
  • 1 cup of honey (240 ml)
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 teaspoons of dry yeast
  • Raisins (optional)

Step 2: Prepare the Lemons

Wash the lemons thoroughly and cut them into slices. Remove any seeds. Place the lemon slices in a bowl and add 1/4 teaspoon of yeast. Sprinkle them with 1/4 cup of white sugar and mix well. Let the mixture sit for a few hours.

Step 3: Boil the Water and Add the Sugar

In a large pot, bring 14 cups of water to a boil. Add 1 cup of brown sugar, 1 cup of white sugar, and 1 cup of honey. Stir until all the sugar is dissolved.

Step 4: Add the Lemon Mixture and Yeast

Once the sugar has dissolved, remove the pot from heat and add the lemon mixture and 4 teaspoons of dry yeast. Stir well.

Step 5: Ferment the Mead

Pour the mixture into a large jar or bottles. Add some raisins if you like. The raisins will help with the fermentation process. Cover the jar or bottles with a cloth or a loose lid. Let the mead ferment at room temperature for 1-2 days.

Step 6: Bottle and Chill

After 1-2 days, the mead will start to bubble and foam. This means it’s ready to be bottled. Carefully pour the mead into bottles, leaving some space at the top. Seal the bottles tightly and store them in a cool, dark place for a few days. Once the mead has chilled, it’s ready to drink.

Step 7: Enjoy Your Sima Finnish Mead!

Sima is a refreshing drink that is typically enjoyed during the Finnish May Day celebrations. Pour it into a glass and enjoy it with friends and family. Sima is traditionally accompanied by a funnel, which makes pouring it into glasses easier. Cheers to a delicious and easy Finnish drink!

Substitutions and Variations

“A Refreshing Summer Drink: Sima Finnish Mead”

The beauty of cooking is that there’s always room for experimentation and personalization. Sima Finnish Mead Recipe is no exception. Here are some substitutions and variations that you can try to make this recipe your own:

– Sweeteners: While the recipe calls for a combination of honey and white and brown sugar, you can experiment with different types of sweeteners. For instance, you can use molasses instead of brown sugar, or use only honey for a more pronounced honey flavor. Keep in mind that the type of sweetener you use will impact the final taste of the drink.

– Lemons: Lemons are an essential ingredient in this recipe, but if you don’t have lemons on hand or want to switch things up, you can try using other citrus fruits such as oranges or grapefruits. Just keep in mind that the acidity and sweetness levels may differ, so adjust the amount of sugar accordingly.

– Mineral water: While Finnish spring water is traditionally used to make Sima, you can use any type of mineral or sparkling water to give the drink some fizz. You can also experiment with using different flavors of sparkling water, such as lemon or lime.

– Yeast: The recipe calls for dry yeast, but you can also use sourdough starter or even a ginger bug to ferment the lemonade. Each type of yeast will yield a slightly different flavor profile and texture, so it’s worth experimenting with.

– Raisins: Some recipes call for adding raisins to the Sima mixture, as they can help kickstart the fermentation process. If you want to try this variation, add a handful of raisins to the mixture before fermenting.

– Alcoholic Sima: While Sima is typically a non-alcoholic drink, you can easily turn it into an alcoholic drink by adding a shot of vodka or gin to each glass.

Whatever substitutions or variations you decide to try, be sure to take detailed notes on the results so that you can tweak the recipe to your liking in the future. Happy brewing!

Serving and Pairing

“Sipping on a Glass of Homemade Sima is Like a Hug from Finland”

Sima, the Finnish mead, is typically enjoyed during celebrations, especially on the 1st of May, also known as Vappu. Traditionally, sima is served in a glass accompanied by a funnel, which adds a touch of fun to the drinking experience.

When it comes to pairing, sima is a versatile drink that can be enjoyed on its own or paired with a variety of dishes. Sima’s sweet and sour flavor makes it an ideal accompaniment to savory foods such as grilled meats, roasted vegetables, and hearty soups. Its light and refreshing taste also makes it a great pairing for light salads and seafood dishes.

For a traditional Finnish experience, serve sima with a slice of rye bread and a piece of Finnish cheese, such as Leipäjuusto or Juustoleipä. The combination of the sweet and sour sima with the salty and creamy cheese is a match made in heaven.

If you’re looking to serve sima as a cocktail, try mixing it with some sparkling mineral water and a splash of vodka for a refreshing and bubbly drink. You can also experiment with adding different fruits and herbs to create your own unique sima cocktail.

Overall, sima is a versatile and delicious drink that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Whether you’re sipping it on its own or pairing it with your favorite foods, sima is sure to be a hit at any celebration or gathering.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“Finnish Mead: A Delicious and Easy-to-Make Drink for Any Occasion”

Sima is a drink that can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to a week before drinking. It’s best to make it at least a day in advance to allow time for the flavors to blend together. Sima can also be stored in the freezer for up to three months. Just make sure to leave enough space at the top of the container for the liquid to expand as it freezes.

If you have leftover sima, it can be reheated gently on the stovetop or in the microwave. Be careful not to boil it, as this can affect the flavor. Sima can also be served cold, over ice, or mixed with sparkling water or soda for a refreshing twist.

When storing sima, keep it in an airtight container to prevent any off-flavors or odors from seeping in. If you notice any mold or off-putting smells, discard the sima immediately. As a fermented drink, sima can be sensitive to temperature changes and exposure to air, so it’s important to store it properly to maintain its quality.

Overall, sima is a versatile drink that can be enjoyed in various ways and stored for later consumption. Whether you’re making it for a May Day celebration or just to enjoy on a warm spring day, sima is a delicious and unique drink that is sure to impress.

Tips for Perfect Results

Now that you have all the ingredients ready and the recipe for Finnish mead in front of you, it’s time to focus on some tips that will help you achieve the best results possible. Making mead is a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also be a bit tricky if you’re not careful. Here are some tips to keep in mind when making sima – Finnish mead recipe.

First, it’s essential to use the right kind of water. Mineral water is the best option for making sima. It has the perfect balance of minerals and pH level needed for fermentation. Avoid using tap water, which may contain chlorine that can kill the yeast.

Second, when adding the sugar, it’s essential to do it gradually. Add a small amount of sugar and stir until it dissolves before adding more. This way, the sugar will dissolve evenly, and you won’t end up with clumps of sugar in your mead.

Third, make sure to use fresh lemons. Lemons are the star ingredient in sima, and their flavor can make or break your drink. Squeeze the lemons just before adding them to the mixture to get the most flavor out of them.

Fourth, be careful not to over-ferment the mead. If you let it sit for too long, it can turn sour and become undrinkable. The fermentation process usually takes 2-3 days, depending on the temperature and humidity levels in your kitchen.

Fifth, use the right yeast for the job. Dry yeast is the most common option for making mead, but you can also use sourdough or other types of yeast. Make sure to follow the instructions on the yeast package carefully.

Sixth, don’t forget to add raisins to your mead. Raisins are not only a traditional ingredient in sima, but they also help to kick-start the fermentation process. They contain natural yeast that can help to activate the yeast you added to the mixture.

Finally, be patient. Finnish mead takes time to ferment and mature properly. Don’t rush the process, and let the mead sit for at least a week before drinking it. This will allow the flavors to develop fully and give you the best possible results.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to make a delicious and authentic sima – Finnish mead recipe that you can enjoy on any occasion. Cheers!


Now that you know how to make sima, it’s time to answer some frequently asked questions about this Finnish drink. These questions will help you understand the drink even better so you can prepare it with confidence and impress your friends and family. Let’s dive into the most common questions about sima.

What is sima in Finnish?

In the Kalevala, Elias Lönnrot used the term “sima” to refer to a beverage, although the word originally meant honey in Finnish.

How much alcohol is in sima?

Sima, a delightful Finnish beverage, is a low-alcohol mead with a refreshing lemon flavor that is often enjoyed during the festivities of the 1st of May. This fizzy drink is usually paired with a crispy funnel cake or sugar-coated donut to enhance its taste. The fermentation process of sima is primarily aimed at creating the carbonation effect, resulting in a bubbly and effervescent beverage. Typically, sima has an alcohol content between 0.5% to 0.8%, making it a perfect choice for those who want to enjoy a light and flavorful drink.

Is sima a probiotic?

Discover this refreshing and nutritious Finnish drink recipe called Sima, which only requires basic pantry staples you most likely already have at home.

What is the fruit normally used in the Finnish vappu drink sima?

Sima is a Finnish beverage that has a refreshing lemon flavor and a slight fizz. It is typically consumed before the yeast cells have converted all the sugar into alcohol, giving it a fruity taste. Sima is commonly enjoyed on Vappu, which is the Finnish May Day celebration, and is often paired with traditional funnel cakes.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, sima is a delicious and easy-to-make Finnish mead that is perfect for springtime celebrations like May Day or Vappu. With its refreshing lemon flavor and light carbonation, sima is a great alternative to traditional alcoholic drinks like beer or wine. Plus, with only a few simple ingredients like honey, lemons, and yeast, sima is an affordable and accessible drink for anyone to make at home. So why not give this Finnish fermented lemonade a try and impress your friends and family with your brewing skills? Trust me, sima is a drink that you won’t regret trying.

Sima – Finnish Mead Recipe

Sima is a sweat mead that is an essential seasonal brew connected with the Finnish Vappu festival. It is usually spiced by adding both the flesh and rind of a lemon. During secondary fermentation raisins are added to control the amount of sugars and to act as an indicator of readiness for consumption — they will rise to the top of the bottle when the drink is ready. Sima is usually accompanied by munkkeja or Tippaleivät (donuts and other pastries). Mead is ready after 2-3 days.

  • 1 gallon mineral water
  • 1 quart mineral water
  • 12 ounces sugar
  • 12 ounces brown sugar
  • 2 lemons
  • 1/2 cup molasses or 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon yeast
  1. Wash the lemons and peel them thinly. Remove the pith. Slice the lemons and place them with the peel and sugar in a sufficiently large vessel.
  2. Bring half of the water to the boil and pour it over the lemons, peel, honey or molasses and sugar. Stir and leave to stand covered for a while. Add the rest of the water cold. When the liquid is lukewarm add the yeast.
  3. Keep the mead at room temperature until it starts to ferment, i.e. about one day. Put a couple of raisins and 1 tsp of sugar into clean bottles, and strain the mead into the bottles. Loosely cork the bottles and store them in a cool place. The mead is ready when the raisins rise to the surface.
Beverages, Easy, European, Finnish, Healthy, Low Cholesterol, Low Protein, Scandinavian, Vegan

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