10 Must-Have Regional Indian Pudina Dishes During Summers
Image Credit: Pexels

Summers in India can be the most ruthless of times with the temperatures soaring and the heat waves affecting large parts of the nation. What the season calls for are foods that have a natural cooling effect, and mint or pudina fits the bill perfectly. While most people know that mint leaves add a great amount of flavour to any and every dish as well as beverage, what makes these green, spiky and pungent leaves perfect for summer are the many health benefits they can provide. 

Packed with plenty of dietary fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, mint or pudina has anti-inflammatory compounds that not only cool down the body but also aid digestion. The human metabolism slows down during summer months, which is why foods prepared with pudina help a lot. This apart, pudina also improves the immunity system and aids skin health too. Great for oral health, nausea and the common cold, pudina is also believed to be a great stress reliever. 

Because of these benefits, there are plenty of Indian regional cuisines that include pudina in their repertoire of traditional recipes. If you are looking to include pudina in your diet for all its summer benefits, here are all the must-have regional Indian dishes you should try. 

Video credit: YouTube/Hebbar's Kitchen

Pudina Raita

The simplest of mint recipes and definitely one of the healthiest, Pudina Raita is a compulsory side dish during the summer months in North India. The dish is often prepared with chopped mint leaves, curd, grated cucumber and roasted cumin powder, and served chilled. It goes really well with everything from roti and rice to parathas and pulaos, so it really is a must-have summer side with every meal. 

Pudine Ki Chutney

Most people assume Pudine Ki Chutney is a typical North Indian dish, but variations of this minty chutney are made across India—and often with the addition of coriander leaves and dill leaves for added freshness and flavour. Mint leaves are ground to a fine paste with garlic cloves, green chillies and lemon juice to make this stunning green chutney. 

Pudina Aloo

Mildly spiced and a staple across vegetarian households in North India, Pudina Aloo is a simple dish of potatoes and mint leaves. Usually, small potatoes are boiled and added to a spice mix, and then mint leaves are added to the dish around the end, making it a very herby treat to be enjoyed with rotis, phulkas and parathas. Many households also add a bit of tanginess to the dish by adding lemon juice. 

Pudina Thogayal

Originating in Tamil Nadu, Pudina Thogayal or Thuvaiyal is a coarse type of mint chutney—a more filling and full-bodied version of Pudine Ki Chutney, in fact. For this dish, mint leaves are blended together with chana dal, coconut, mustard seeds, red chillies and tamarind. If you haven’t tried this delicious Pudina Thogayal yet, you must this summer. 

Pudina Dal

Easy to digest and easier still to make, Pudina Dal is a staple in many North Indian households during summers. Usually prepared with moong dal, this lentil dish is very mildly spiced. The mint leaves are added along with the moong dal when it is boiled with turmeric powder and salt. A tempering of cumin seeds, green chillies and asafoetida is then added. Many people also choose to add fresh mint leaves on top before serving the dal. 

Image credit: Pixabay

Pudina Bath

Popularly prepared in Karnataka, the land of Bise Bele Bath, Pudina Bath is a minty version of the same dish. A paste of mint leaves, green chillies, coconut and other spices is prepared. Then, the mix is stir-fried with cooked rice. Many people also add plenty of veggies like carrots and peas to make Pudina Bath more filling. Because it is a one-pot dish, it also works as a quick and easy meal. 

Pudina Chilli Thecha

Thecha is a condiment from the state of Maharashtra which is usually made with green chillies. Pudina Chilli Thecha is a minty version of the same dish. This version of Thecha is made with chopped mint leaves, green chillies, garlic and a tempering of mustard seeds, asafoetida and oil. Spicy and salty, this mint-packed condiment goes really well with rotis and other flatbreads. 

Pudina Paratha

There are many versions of stuffed parathas from across the country, including the meaty keema parathas and the staple aloo parathas. Pudina Paratha is a summery variation of the same dish in North India. Many people add chopped mint leaves and spices like carom seeds and cumin seeds to the paratha dough itself. Others also make a paste with the mint leaves and add that to the dough, giving the Pudina Parathas a pretty green colour. 

Aam Aru Podina Chatni

Another variation of mint chutney, Aam Aru Podina Chatni hails from the state of Assam, where this one is a summer favourite. Green mangoes are just as much a summer staple as mint leaves, which is why both are combined to make this tangy and zesty condiment. The raw mangoes and mint leaves are chopped up and ground into a fine chutney with green chillies, cumin seeds and salt. Many people add a bit of jaggery to counter the excessive tanginess of this dish. 

Hara Chicken

While most people choose to avoid heavy chicken dishes during peak summer months, Hara Chicken or Pudina Chicken is a better option since the dish combines the goodness of both mint leaves and the protein from chicken. Usually, the mint leaves are ground to a paste with green chillies, ginger, garlic and a few spices, and then added to onions and chicken. The addition of mint leaves gives Hara Chicken a vibrant green colour.