summer coolers : cooling foods and drinks for the harsh Indian summers
We have been surviving on cooling foods as Indian summers don't leave you with an option. You eat one heavy meal in a week and rely on light and cooling kinda food the rest of the days. This is the time I don't care about a dense protein portion in each meal, the body doesn't need it much if I am not working out. And it has been a bit hectic and workout routine a bit irregular and less intense if that is the correct way to put it. I have been gorging on curd rice and it's numerous variations for at least one meal everyday. A large kettle of green tea is brewed along with any fresh herb from the garden, lemon balm or mint or the desi (wild) rose petals, sometimes lemongrass or even peppermint. I pour myself a glass of this tea, add ice cubes and keep sipping. Sometimes a small tidbit to go with it.
This lemon balm green tea has a calming effect when I am overworked.. I talked about this fennel and almond whole wheat biscotti earlier, this is great stuff.
The mango, coconut milk, subza seeds and coconut flakes make a nice filling dessert meal, add as much of each ingredient as you like and have it chilled.
|mango dessert with coconut milk|
Subza is basil seeds and is very cooling for the system.
I have been making melon smoothies a lot last year. This musk melon smoothie with lime juice soaked subza seeds is such a refreshing cooling drink for summers. Just blend Muskmelon cubes without any added liquids and pour into glasses, top with a generous tbsp of soaked subza seeds and enjoy.
|musk melon smoothie with soaked subza|
|watermelon feta salad|
|peach and sweet lime smoothie|
|beans salad with rucola and parmesan|
Mulberries grow around my home in abundance and we get to eat them a lot.
I used home made mint powder. To make mint powder at home you can dry the mint leaves in shade (never in sun or oven as the essential oils will evaporate and mint powder will be a waste) till it gets crumbly. I normally make a loose bunch and hang it in a shady place in the kitchen. The leaves can either be crushed by hand or powdered in food processor. Keep in air tight container.
Last but not the least, this curd 'rice' is my savior. I make this cur 'rice' with barley groats, buckwheat groats, amaranth seeds, rolled oats or the different varieties of rice that we use. More about this curd rice later but this barley curd rice is a great cooling recipe for summer months.
|barley curd rice|
Tell me what summer coolers you rely upon. There are plenty of seasonal fruits one can use and phalsa is one of those yummy berries that make nice phalse ka sharbat. Jamun is another fruit that we love and make a similar sharbat with it. Bael ka sharbat, Aam panna, Sattu and sattu ka sharbat and list goes on.
Share you summer coolers recipes as I am sure there are plenty of foods that we all enjoy in different parts of world. I want to know more.