Five Drinks to Fight the Indian Summer

If you can get past the unforgiving heat, summers become a reminder of golden memories. Just like the sweet tinkling bells of the ice cream man, and blissful siestas under the trusted, noisy chill of the cooler (or silent ACs); drinks have also always been an integral part of summers.

Among the commonly known shikanji (Lemonade), nariyal paani (coconut water), or ganne ka ras (sugarcane juice), there are so many more regional drinks that can guard you stronger against the heat. And if homemade, they’re the healthiest!

Which one of these are you trying at home?

Aam Panna
: Heat resistance and taste- this drink comes is as delicious as is effective in guarding you against the sun. It also cures gastrointestinal disorders and high vitamin C content. Need another reason? Mango.
Recipe:
– Boil 500 gm of raw mangoes until they become soft.
– On cooling, squeeze out the pulp.
– Blend the pulp + 2 cups water with – 1/2 cup sugar, 2 tsp salt, 2 tsp black salt, 2 tsp roasted and powdered cumin seeds, 2 tbsp finely chopped mint leaves.
– Pour the drink over ice cubes and devour!

Panakam: 
Panakam is the perfect antidote for dehydration. Its ingredients give a boost of electrolytes and raw carbohydrates, iron, potassium, antioxidants- making it a perfect come-back to the heat.

Recipe:
– Soak 150 gm of jaggery in 600 ml of water until it melts completely.
– Filter the water to remove any particles.
– To this, add the juice of 3 medium-sized lemons.
– Add 1/2 tsp of dry ginger powder+ a pinch of edible camphor powder + 1/3 tsp cardamom powder + 1/8th tsp black pepper + black salt to taste.
– Chill and gulp down!

Sattu Sherbet: 
A powerhouse of goodness, sattu sherbet is rich in nutrients, fibre and protein. Enriched in brilliant cooling properties, it also energises and boosts digestion. 
Recipe:
– Mix 1/4th cup of sattu powder and 4 cups of chilled water in a jug.
– Add: 2 tsp of lemon juice, 1/2 tsp of roasted cumin powder, 2 tsp raw grated mango, 2 tsp of chopped mint leaves, 1 chopped green chilli and black salt to taste.
– Serve instantly with ice cubes.

Bel Sherbet
: Apart from having cooling properties for the body, bel sherbet is popular for having immense curing abilities. It helps in digestion, getting rid of ulcers, blood purification, control diabetes and boost energy.
Recipe:
– Soak the pulp of 3 small-medium bel fruit in one cup water for 20 mins.
– Mash this pulp very well. Strain it and use 1/2 to 3/4 cup water for it.
– Add 12 tbsp of jaggery to the strained mixture. (jaggery and water can be adjusted to your taste)
– Add 1/3 tsp of roasted cumin powder, 1/3 tsp of cardamom powder, 2 pinches of black salt.
– Mix very well. Add water according to the consistency you like.

Variyali Sherbet: 
Variyali- known as fennel seeds in English- is goodness galore. The aromatic herb is usually used as a mouth freshener, but also has pain relieving, digestive, and cooling benefits for the body. The drink can be made with water or milk base and the easiest way to make it is by making the powder in bulk that will serve you for the next 4-5 months (to be stored in the refrigerator).
Recipe:
– Mix in a bowl- 1 cup variyali, 3 cups sugar (acc to your taste), 1 tsp whole black pepper, 7 pods cardamom, 1 tbsp khus khus
– Grind these into a fine powder and store them in a ziplock in the refrigerator.
Water-based sherbet
– Add ice cubes, 1/2 cup lemon juice, mint leaves, 2 tbsp of variyali sherbet powder
– Add 1 1/2 cup water
– Slurp!
Milk-based sherbet
– Add 2tbsp of variyali sherbet powder to 1 1/2 cup chilled milk
- Stir well, gulp down!

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