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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.