Summer is lasting a little longer than expected. It’s that time of the year when everybody is eagerly looking forward to monsoon. Every single say, we wake up in the morning and look up into the sky and sigh… we wonder when those first few drops of rain are going to cool everything down. Lets drink lots of ‘Paanaka’ and keep waiting.
‘Paanaka’ is the simple Indian Lemonade, which has become my latest love. I have been drinking lots of it through the day in big beer mugs. I really really like the earthy flavours of it. It has just lime, liquid jaggey and a little bit of cardamom but when it’s made with the right proportion and served chilled, it really tastes very special. For a different variation you can use a pinch of saffron instead of cardamom as well.
This Paanaka is better than the regular lemonade for more than one reason. To begin with Jaggery or the traditional unrefined sugar of India, is high in minerals, calcium, phosphorous, zinc etc. It’s believed to be a muscle relaxant, which helps you in getting rid of fatigue. It’s a great source of Iron which makes it good for people suffering from anemia. Iron is absorbed better into your baby when consumed in combination of Vitamin C. In Paanaka, when lime and jaggery is mixed together, you have yourself the perfect formula!
I have used organic liquid jaggery (also known as ‘Joni Bella’ in Kannada) from ‘No Man’s land’ here. You can find good quality liquid jaggry in most organic or health food stores across Bangalore. You can also use powdered jagegry instead.
Choose this refreshing healthy Paanaka over sugary carbonated drinks this summer.
- 2-3 tbsp liquid jiggery
- 1 small lime
- 1 pod of cardamom.
Take 250ml cold water. Cut the lime in half and squeeze the juice into the water. Add 2 tbsp of jaggey and stir well for it to completely dissolve. Break open the cardamom pod and get the small black seeds out. Crush them well and add to the Panaka. Serve chilled.
This recipe makes one big mug of Paanaka.