What’s the trending drink this summer in Coimbatore?

Native summer coolers, made using ingredients available in our backyard, are an ideal way to beat the heat

Updated - May 22, 2024 02:12 pm IST

Published - May 22, 2024 02:08 pm IST

Aam Panna

Aam Panna | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Traditional aam paana can be whipped up in three minutes – blend kilimooku manga pieces with curry leaves, crushed pepper, naatu sakkarai or palm jaggery and a pinch of salt and the drink is ready to be savoured. “Raw mangoes are cooling, are a great digestive, are believed to prevent heat stroke, and have vitamin C, which we need more in summer,” says Sreedevi Lakshmi Kutty, co-founder of Bio Basics, an organic online retail store passionate about bringing diverse grains, organic ingredients including dals and jaggery, vegetables and fruits to families.

“Everybody wants ripe mangoes, but no takers for kilimooku manga which is surprising. Children are drawn by advertisements of aerated drinks which are nothing but empty calories. How many children have had cut mango sprinkled with chilli powder and salt? Salt also replenishes lost sodium in the body. Raw mangoes can be used to make chammanthi or a single pot mango rice with grated raw mango,” she says adding that Bio Basics has also stocked up on kokum nectar and dried kokum rhinds that can be used to make a cooling drink, rasam, juice, or solkadhi.

Traditional drinks are easy to make, and are healthy too. “For example, vegetables like pumpkin, ash gourd and bottle gourd can be used. A bowl of grated and cooked gourd can be added to curd rice to stay hydrated and healthy. I also recommend a drink with ash gourd, curry leaves, a piece of raw mango and naatu sakkarai. You can blend them together and consume without filtering. These drinks are naturally cooling for the body. They also replenish minerals lost through the day because of profuse sweating.”

Gongura flower

Gongura flower | Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

You can also shop for roselle flowers (gongura flower petals available as dried petals and powder form) that can be used to make chutney, cold tea, or a drink with crushed pepper and jeera thrown in for good measure.

To know more, call 9790516500 or visit @biobasicsin on Instagram

Summer drinks at Namma Ooru Sandhai

Alageswari S, founder of Iyal Vaagai, a 10-year-old environmental movement that drives home the message on sustainable living, brings Namma Ooru Sandhai, an eco-friendly monthly market that promotes organic produce of farmers from the region. Besides shopping for vegetables, fruits, native rice varieties, and millet sweets, snacks and savouries, people can also try native drinks like rose milk made by blending together paneer rose petals, grated coconut, cardamom, and grated beetroot. “You have to filter it, add a dash of honey and a complete summer drink is ready,” says Alageswari adding that the drink has calcium, and builds immunity while rose petals are cooling.

Rose milk

Rose milk | Photo Credit: RAGU R

While at the Sandhai, also try manjal paal. This drink also has grated coconut, a piece of turmeric, ginger, and cardamom. “When ground together and filtered, you get rich and creamy milk that packs a punch. You can add naatu sakkarai if needed,” explains Alageswari.


Gooseberry | Photo Credit: Anatchant

Another drink is the nelli malli loaded with the goodness of gooseberry and coriander. “Farmers also add a slice of ginger, salt, naatu sakkarai, and red chilli to it. It is refreshing and nutritious. Mint and coriander drink along with ginger, lime and a dash of honey, panangalkandu or naatu sakkarai is another healthy summer drink.”

You can also try thennai neera, (that has to consumed fresh) nungu-elaneer-sabsa seeds drink made with almond milk or milk from grinding sprouted ragi or soaked kambu. If you are game for sembaruthi ice cream, head to the Sandhai to know more.

Every second Sunday from 10am onwards at Corporation Higher Secondary School, Cross Cut Road, Gandhipuram. Call 9942118080

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