- Food and Cooking
Cool Drinks for a Hot Summer Day
Fantastic Cool Drinks
India is a country with tropical climate. So many regions have invented their own cold drinks to tackle the heat. This is a collection of some of the drinks.
Most of them are area specific meaning the original taste of the drink is retained only in that area. For example when a drink of the north is tried in the south, it undergoes subtle variations in the taste because of the ingredients with a local twist. But all these drinks have been around for a long time and would make even summers enjoyable.
When I was a child, my mother always stacked our fridge with one or more of these drinks whether it was summer or winter. They are very easy to make and are available throughout India.
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Karumbu Charu (Sugarcane juice)
Tamil Nadu is famous for this recipe. It is recognized as a great source of hydration and also prevents jaundice.
Sugarcane - 1
Sugar - 2 tablespoon
Lemon - 1
Ginger - Peeled and crushed
Peel the sugar cane and cut it into small pieces.
In a blender, add the sugar cane, sugar, ginger.
Extract the juice from the lemon and add it to the blender.
Blend it well and an instant healthy drink is ready.
Nannari is a famous syrup in India. It is known by different names in different part of the country. In Tamil it is called Nannari. The actual syrup is made from Sasparilla roots. It is available as an Indian Street food, but it is very easy to make it at home. The root is available in country drug store than the big commercial drug stores. It is known for its cooling properties. It prevents fever and dysentry.
Sasparilla roots - 100 gm
Lemon - 1
Sugar - 2 tablespoon
Water - 2 cups
For the nannari syrup:
Wash the roots well to get rid of the mud and dust.
Remove the central portion of the roots and dry the other portion in the sun for a day.
When it is dried well, put in in a blender and grind it into a nice powder.
Boil two cups of water. Switch off the flame and add the roots and close it with a lid. Leave it undisturbed for twelve hours.
After that time period, filter the liquid through a muslin cloth.
Add sugar to the mixture and boil it again. Keep stirring till it becomes a syrup.
Add the lemon juice and stir well.
For the sharbat:
To a glass of water, add two tablespoons of nannari and two tablespoons of lemon juice and serve chilled.
This is yet another yummy drink with mangoes. The drink tastes best when the mangoes are raw.
Raw mangoes - 2
Cumin Seeds - 2 tsp
Black pepper corns - 2 tsp
Mint leaves - 10
Roast the cumin seeds and keep it aside.
Mix the sugar with water. Boil it till it becomes a thick syrup.
Boil the raw mangoes in water for two minutes.The mangoes will become pulpy.
Now add the pulp, roasted cumin, pepper corn, salt, mint leaves and crushed ice.
Finally add the sugar syrup and blend well.
Garnish it with mint leaves and serve it cold.
Drink to your health
During the Indian festival of Holi, a special milk based drink called Thandai is prepared. It contains a rich mixture of milk amd spices.
Milk - 1 litre
Sweet Condensed milk - 1 can
Almonds - 5
Sunflower seeds - 2 tsp
Rose water - 1 tablespoon
Grind the almonds,cardamom seeds,sunflower seeds, almonds and rose water into a fine paste.
Mix it with the milk and condensed milk and stir well.
Add crushed ice and garnish with rose petals.
Thandai is ready.
Badam milk is a yummy cool drink. It is a great alternative for people who do not like milk. Now you have a reason to love milk as much as I do.
Almond - 100 g
Vanilla Essence - 4 drops
Milk - 1 cup
Sugar - 2 tablespoon
Saffron - a pinch
Bring water to a boil and switch off the flame.
Add the badam (almonds) to the water, cover it and keep it aside for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, peel the skin of the almonds.
In a blender, add the peeled almonds, water, vanilla essence, sugar and blend it into a nice paste.
Strain the coarse particles using a muslin cloth.
Refrigerate the drink.
Garnish it with saffron and serve cold.
Alternatively you can use chocolate essence too instead of vanilla.
Iced Strawberry Tea
We are tea lovers. We love green tea, black tea or tea with milk. But how about tea with a fruit? Here is a great recipe for cold tea using strawberries.
Fresh Strawberry - 50 gm
Add the strawberries to a blender and puree it.
Strain the puree to remove any coarse particles.
In a vessel, boil water.
Add the tea dust and switch off the flame.
Keep the tea covered for five minutes till the essence is collected.
Pour the tea into a glass and allow it to cool
Add the strawberry puree and some honey
Keep it in the fridge for an hour.
Garnish it with some strawberries and serve.
Lassi is a traditional drink which originated in Pakistan and later came to India. It is very famous in Punjab.
Yogurt - 2 cups
Water - 1 cup
Crushed Ice - 1 cup
Sugar - 3 tablespoon
Crushed Almonds - 1 tsp
Put all the ingredients except almonds and cream into a blender and blend well.
The mixture will be a bit dense.
Pour it into a glass, mix the crushed almond.
Add a dollop of cream on top and serve chilled.
Jal Jeera Soda
This is an appetizer an as well as aids in digestion after heavy meals.The ingredients are natural rememdy for constipation and gas trouble.
Tamarind Pulp - 1/2 tsp
Lemon Juice - 1/2 cup
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Fresh Coriander Leaves
Soda - 1 cup
Grind the ginger,mint and coriander leaves into a fine paste.
Roast the cumin seeds and grind it well.
In a pot the ground mint paste, the cumin powder, salt, sugar, lemon juice and tamarind pulp and stir well.
Finally add the soda.
Garnish it with boondi and serve chilled.