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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Shikanji (North Indian style lemonade)

With the summers fast approaching, lemonades are becoming a regular feature in my home. While the traditional lemon drink served in Odisha uses just sugar and a pinch of salt apart from lemon and water, down South they sprinkle it generously with mint leaves. Different from these two, the North Indian version is a little more spicy. It makes use of black salt 'kala namak' and roasted cumin powder along with the other ingredients. It is popularly known as 'Shikanji' or 'Shikanjvi' and is widely available at roadside stalls throughout summer.

Most of us adore the plain old nimbu-pani and this version just adds a refreshing twist to a crowd favorite recipe. Lemon being high on the list of 'Detox foods', with its properties of being a blood purifier and a cleansing agent, sip on a glass or two everyday without guilt. (Just try to replace the sugar with some honey/sugarfree if you watching weight). Read on for the recipe:

Preparation Time - 5 minutes

Ingredients -

1 big lemon
5-6 tsp sugar
2 pinch roasted cumin powder
1/5 tsp black salt/kala namak
2 glasses water ( about 500 ml )
Ice cubes (optional)

Preparation - Cut the lemon into two halves .(Check the pic below to see how the lemon should be cut so that maximum juice can be extracted. You will be surprised as to how many folks are ignorant about this simple trick)

Take the water in a blender/juicer jar. Add the sugar, black salt and squeeze in the lemon. Blitz till the sugar is dissolved.

Pour in tall glasses. Add the roasted cumin powder and ice cubes.

Serve immediately.

Note - One can also some fresh mint leaves to this preparation.  You can also add the cumin powder during the blending stage instead on sprinkling it later on.

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