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Showing posts with label cooling drinks for summer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cooling drinks for summer. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Kokum and Rose Mojito ( A Refreshing Non-alcoholic Cooler )

 IMP - Kokum and Rose Mojito is an original recipe created by the blogger and has been published for the first time on oriyarasoi.com.

March has just begun and the mercury has already started climbing up ! If predictions are going to come true, then we are all bracing up for one of the hottest summers in the recent years. Once again, all that talk about global warming, deforestation and depleting polar caps is going to grab the limelight. Everyone worth their salt or even otherwise to going to add their opinion and suddenly social media is to get abuzz with a new trending topic. But till that happens, let us just chill. Kyunki alarm abhi baja nahi !!

Coming back to yours truly, summers are all about coolers. Given that I love guzzling water and make it a point to drink atleast 3 liters in a day, summers somehow make me crave for something extra. A dash of lemon to my regular water or a teaspoon of 'Rooh-afza' or even a teaspoon of glucose is a must ! But apart from these, I love to indulge in a variety of natural drinks like 'Aam panna', 'Bel panna', 'Thandai', 'Ragi sherbat', 'lassi' and buttermilk .

Lately I have started loving the sparkling ones like Mojitos  or ginger ale. But since I love to add my own twist to every recipe, I experimented a bit and came up with this a very traditional touch to the mojito. Rose and Kokum Mojito is one such drink that turned out to be a hit with my family and friends !

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 5 mins ( plus 20 mins standby )

Ingredients -

  • 2-3 Kokum pieces
  • 1 tsp rose syrup
  • 3-4 sprig mint leaves
  • ice cubes
  • 1/2 lemon
  • plain syrup (as per taste)
  • soda water / sparkling water 

Preparation - Steep the kokum pieces in 1/2 cup of hot water. Let it stand for 20 mins.

Take the mint leaves and kokum pieces (along with the water) in a tall glass and muddle a bit. Add the lime juice, rose syrup and plain syrup.

Pack with ice cubes and top with sparkling water.

Serve immediately !

Monday, May 30, 2016

Spiced Mango Lemonade with Basil seeds ( Vegan Mango Drink )

When it comes to mangoes and mango recipes, a mango milkshake hardly makes it to the list of my favorites. I tend to find it too sweet and heavy to digest. So, I usually stick to my aamras. But lately, the mango lemonade has been a regular on my menu. On most days, I prefer to have a swig in the hours between breakfast and lunch as my energy levels tend to dip after 12. A lemonade with honey as the sweetener is my go-to drink. However with mangoes being very much in season, I do add a bit of the pulp to my lemonade. The result is a yummy cooler with the right balance of sweetness and tang.

To spice up things a bit, I add some powdered dry ginger ( excellent for keeping the digestive system in order ) and some powdered fennel ( an excellent coolant ) to it. For added health benefits and to keep the body cool during summers, throw in about 1 tsp of soaked basil seeds (subza) into each glass and you have the perfect example of 'Health bhi Taste bhi' on your hands. Though it is a bit high on the calories, it is still loaded with nutrients (and free from additives) unlike any of the store bought coolers. Try it and you won't regret it !!

Read on for the recipe of this wonderfully delicious and healthy natural cooler -

Preparation time - 10 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1 cup mango pulp/chunks
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • sugar syrup (as per taste)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 pinch dry ginger powder (saunth)
  • 1 pinch fennel powder
  • 1 tsp basil seeds ( soaked for 3-4 hours )

Preparation - Take the mango pulp/chunks, sugar syrup, lemon juice , dry ginger powder, fennel powder and blend till smooth. Dilute with as much water as you need.

Place the soaked basil seeds in a glass. Pour the mango lemonade gently over it. Chill for 15-20 mins, Serve.

For sugar syrup - Take 1 cup sugar and 2 cups water in a saucepan. Place it medium heat. Boil till sugar dissolves. once syrup becomes sticky, remove from flame and cool down.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Chattua Panaa ( The Vegan Version )

Panaa Sankranti or the Odia New year is marked by the consumption of the signature drink, 'Panna' . Cooling and refreshing, this traditional drink comes in many versions. Infact everyone I seem to know has their own 'secret little ingredient' for this drink. Little wonder that none of the ones I have sampled over the years has ever tasted alike.

My favorite panaa however is the 'Bael Panna', a light drink made with just 3 ingredients. Wood apple pulp, yogurt and sugar diluted with water, this has the most unique taste experience that one can come across. But since the fruit is not available easily outside Odisha, I end up making the 'Chaatua panna' or 'Aam panna' most of the times. But this summer, I have reduced my intake of the 'Aam panna' as it requires copious amounts of sugar.

With today being 'Panaa Sakranti' and me being caught up in one of those #govegan moods, I decided to try out a vegan version for the 'Chattua Panna'. Used some almond milk instead of using yogurt and chenna. And added a tiny amount of rose water to the concoction. Turned out to be super delicious and healthy too !!

Read on for recipe -

Ingredients -

  • 3 tsp chattua ( roasted gram flour )
  • 1 cup almond milk 
  • 1 small banana
  • 1/2 of one apple
  • a few green grapes
  • 2 tsp powdered jaggery
  • a pinch of cardamom
  • a few drops of rose water
  • a few slices of fresh coconut 
  • 1 tsp freshly grated coconut
  • water to adjust the consistency

Preparation - Chop the banana and apples into small pieces.

Transfer everything (except coconut slices) into a grinder jar. Buzz for a few seconds till the jaggery gets dissolved.

Check the consistency. While it is generally kept thick, you can add a little more water if you prefer a thinner consistency.

Pour into a glass and garnish with coconut slices/grated coconut. (Add 2-3 ice cubes if you want it chilled)

Serve immediately.

Note - To prepare the almond milk, soak 1 cup almonds overnight. Next morning, discard the water and peel them. Blend on high for 3-4 mins along with 2 - 2 1/2 cups water. Strain and remove the pulp. Use the extracted milk within 3-4 days ( when refrigerated ).

The pulp can be kneaded into the dough for making rotis/puris/parathas.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Roasted Aam Panna ( Aka Smoked Mango Nectar )

Beginning with the day the first blossoms were spotted on the mango trees to the day when the last fruit of the season was plucked ( or brought down by the rains ), a period of sheer madness would descend on the household. The mornings would begin with a round of close inspection wherein each and every branch was inspected for the tiny fruits ( amba chaana ) that emerged slowly amidst the masses of sweet smelling flowers. Multiple sighs would follow each tiny fruit that was found lying on the ground. And since a lot of then actually dropped off, one can easily imagine the plight of the poor family member who did the inspection and broke the news to the others.

An agonizing period of waiting followed till the tiny mangoes turned somewhat bigger and plumper. Not they hadn't ripened. But one could still savour them raw in the form of many chutneys, an occasional pickle or the most awaited combination with some salt and red chili powder. Such simple bliss. Sadly, it would easily turn into sheer agony when one went overboard with the mangoes or the red chili powder. And when such occurrences turned frequent, the elders would take turns ensuring that we did not venture too close to the mango trees.

But the elders were not the only ones who kept the kids in check. Tradition demanded that the first fruit be offered to Lord Krishna on Dola Purnima ( Holi ). And a rather strict grandmother ensured that the mischievous kids fell in line with that diktat of hers. The stories concocted by her would seem dubious in hindsight but at a young age, they instilled enough fear in mind to quell any lingering notions of mischief.

However, once the curfew on the green mangoes got lifted, they would lose their charm all too rapidly. Everyone looked forward to relishing the sweet flesh of the ripe yellow ones. And most of the ripening would be done at home. Once the mangoes reached a certain size and took on a particular hue, they would be plucked carefully and tucked into a dark corner within the house to ripen in the safety of those bamboo baskets. Apparently, homo sapiens are not the only species who enjoy this delicious fruit. Other species ( and your neighbors too ) can also take a shine to this rather yummy fruit . Hence, the extra protection, though painful at times, is always recommended.

But everything is forgotten once the mangoes start to ripen and fill the house/garden with their excruciatingly sweet smell. Suddenly mangoes are a part of every meal. For mango lovers like me, this period of sheer bliss is nothing less than an annual honeymoon. And a guaranteed one too. This is often followed by a period of abstinence (thanks to the overdose of mangoes) which is quickly replaced by renewed enthusiasm as the mango seasons draws to an end. And finally one says goodbye to the mango with a heavy heart. Sigh !!

But worry not. This is just the start of the mango season and the recipe that I am sharing is one made from the green mangoes. 'Aam Panna' or the green mango drink is sheer delight on the senses. It is a traditional summer cooler which is a great way to beat the heat without resorting to bottled drinks with loads of added chemicals. While panna is usually made from boiled mango pulp, I have roasted the green mangoes to infuse the flesh with a smokey flavor. Also, I have used jaggery instead of sugar which makes it all the more healthy.

Read on for this refreshing recipe -

Preparation Time - 15 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1 green mango
  • 3 tsp jaggery or as per taste
  • 2 pinch black salt
  • a pinch of table salt ( recommended for the sour mangoes )
  • 2 pinch pepper powder
  • a pinch of cardamom 
Preparation - Wash and dry the mango. Roast it on the gas burner on a low to medium flame till the skin is 60 to 70 percent blackened.

Remove and cover with a steel bowl. Keep aside till it cools down. Peel the burnt skin and chop the flesh.

Transfer the flesh to a blender jar along with the remaining ingredients, 2 cups water and a few ice cubes. Blend together.

Serve immediately. Else keep it chilled and serve within a day or two.

Note - The color of the panna will vary according to the sweetener used. Sugar will give it a pale yellow color while jaggery will give it golden brown to richer brown tones.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Mango Lassi ( 2nd Version )

This yummy mango lassi does more than just beat the summer heat. The medley of flavors unleash a state of utopia that remains throughout the day. I find it the best way to end a rather frugal lunch consisting of rotis, dry subzi and some salad. The rose syrup and rose essence used in this recipe are the underdogs who steal the limelight without one even realizing it.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 5-6 mins

Ingredients -

1 cup diced ripe mango
1 cup fresh yogurt
3/4 cup chilled water ( or as per desired consistency )
a pinch of cardamom
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp condensed milk
1/2 tsp rose water

For the garnish -

1 tsp subza(basil) seeds
2 tbsp rose syrup
1 tbsp water

Preparation - Soak the subza seeds with rose syrup and water in a small bowl. Leave aside for 2 hours.

Take the mango cubes, sugar, condensed milk and 1/4 cup water in a blender jar. Buzz for a few seconds till the ingredients come together. Add the yogurt, remaining water, rose water and cardamom powder. Buzz for a few seconds more. The mango lassi is now ready.

Put some soaked basil seeds at the bottom of the glass. Gently pour the lassi into the glass and finally add some more soaked basil seeds on the top.

Serve immediately.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Ragi Buttermilk

Another healthy and traditional drink from Odisha. A few days back I had posted the recipe for Ragi Sharbat (sweet) on my blog which elicted quite a few surprises. Most people were not aware that Ragi can be consumed in the raw form. Here is the savory version of the drink which can be best as 'Ragi Buttermilk'.
There is yet another version in which Ragi flour is dissolved in 'Torani', the water that is discarded after cooking rice. But I will leave it for some other time.

Read on for the recipe-

Preparation Time - 5 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1 tall glass buttermilk
  • 2 tsp Ragi flour
  • 1 tsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 1/3 tsp chopped green chilli
  • 1/3 inch ginger (finely grated)
  • salt to taste

Preparation - Throw in all the ingredients in a blender. Buzz for a few seconds.

Pour into a tall glass with a few ice cubes thrown in.

Serve immediately.

Note - If you do not have buttermilk available, make your own. Take 3-4 tsp yogurt with a glass of water in a blender and buzz for 1 minutes. Throw in some ice so that the fat separates out and floats to the top.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Mandiya Sharbat (Ragi/Finger Millet drink)

Summers in the Western parts of Odisha are a scorching affair. Temperatures that hover around 50 degrees Celsius and hot searing winds make life miserable. Apart from having Pakhala, a watery rice dish that is known to have cooling properties, people prefer all sorts of chilled/cooling drinks . Little wonder that the sale/intake of soft drinks shoot up sharply. ( If you tend to disagree, try and remember when was the last time you were served a traditional drink at someone's house.)

But there are a whole lot of natural drinks that were very popular in Odisha till a few years back. Bela-panna, Lembu pani (lime juice), dahi sharbat (kind of lassi) , gholaa dahi (buttermilk) and mandiya sharbat (ragi drink)were the drinks of choice.

Ragi or Mandiya is known for its cooling properties on the boy and is regularly consumed as Ragi malt/porridge(palua in Odiya) down South. While it is usually consumed in the cooked form, people in Odisha make a simple cooling drink with Ragi powder and a little sugar/jaggery/mishri. Some fresh curd and very little cardamom may also be added to improve the flavor. The drink is usually consumed in the morning on an empty stomach but one can have it at any time of the time.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 5-6 mins

Ingredients -

3 tbsp Ragi powder (Mandiya Chuna)
2 tsp powdered jaggery
1/2 cup fresh yogurt
180 ml water
a pinch of cardamom (optional)
2-3 ice cubes (optional)

Preparation - Take the ragi powder, jaggery, water and cardamom powder in a blender jar. Buzz for 1-2 minutes till jaggery gets dissolved.

Strain the liquid to remove any undissolved solids. ( One can also drink it without straining. )

Pour into a tall glass and stir in the fresh yogurt.

Add ice cubes and serve immediately.

( The drink tends to separate into layers if allowed to stand. Nothing to panic about. Just stir again and drink it. )

Notes - There is also a savory version of this drink. Will publish it soon.

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