The Bael ( Bel) tree is considered sacred in Hinduism where the leaves and fruit are used to worship Lord Shiva. Bael fruit (Botanical name ~ Aegle marmelos), also known as Stone Apple, Bael Pathar, Vilvam (Tamil), Bilva (Hindi) and Maredu pandu (Telugu) is packed with nutrition, helps cure acidity, ulcers, gastric disorders and helps to cool and detoxify the body. In fact, every part of Bael tree is useful, the roots and leaves are used to treat skin infections and stomach ailments.
Most people prepare Sharbat using the ripe fruit. One can also prepare Sharbat using bel syrup that is prepared from dried Bel fruit. Bel syrup preparation is slightly labor intensive but simple. Basically you wash the dried Bael aka Maredu thoroughly and soak in water overnight. Next day morning the dried bel is boiled along with the soaked water till it reduces to half the original quantity. The resultant mixture is strained and further boiled with sugar till it becomes slightly thick brown colored mixture. To prepare Bel Ka Sharbat, pour 3 heaped tablespoons of the prepared Bel syrup into a tall glass, add 1 tbsp of lemon juice and pour chilled water to the brim. Add ice cubes and serve.