With the onset of summer, Eastern India is all geared up to beat the heat with various kinds of drinks. From West Bengal to Jharkhand to Odisha, there are perfect summer drinks that work as a perfect solution to provide relief during the hot summer days. Read below to know about the drinks.
India is known for its diversity in everything, be it language, culture, religion, or food. And with the onset of summer, India battles the heat by quenching its thirst with a variety of refreshing, cool drinks. From the popular Masala Chaas to the humble Aam Panna, every region in India has its own unique summer drink.
Let’s take a look at some popular regional drinks from West Bengal, Odisha, and Jharkhand and how they are the perfect solution to beat the summer heat.
West Bengal is well-known for its gastronomic and cultural offerings, as well as its blistering summer. So, what do Bengalis drink to beat the heat?
Aam Porar Shorbat
The hot and muggy air of a Bengali summer is ideal for relaxing with a cool glass of "Aam Porar Shorbat." The roasted raw mangoes used to create aam pora sharbat are a staple of the hot summer months in Bengal, a traditional Thai drink whose name comes from the main component, roasted mango. The drink's distinctive smoky flavor comes from the roasted raw mango pulp, which stands in stark contrast to the typical sweet and tangy flavor of mango cocktails. The mint leaves, cumin, and black salt give it a cooling taste, making it ideal for the hot and muggy summers in Bengal.
The vitamins and minerals found in aam pora sharbat contribute to its ability to increase resistance to illness and maintain a comfortable internal temperature. Mangoes, especially in their raw form, are rich in nutrients, including vitamin C, which is believed to boost the immune system, as well as antioxidants and fiber.
Another cooling summertime beverage from West Bengal is Jal jeera. This pleasant and digestive lemonade is flavored with a variety of spices. Lemon juice, cumin, black salt, mint leaves, and sometimes ginger are its main ingredients. The mint leaves and ginger enhance the flavor, while the cumin and black salt aid digestion. A smooth mixture of the components is made by blending them with water, and the drink is then served cold with ice cubes.
Daab Sharbat is a famous summertime drink in Kolkata and other parts of Bengal. Tender coconut water is the basis for this drink, which is both hydrating and delicious. Coconut water, ice, sugar, and a touch of salt are traditionally served in a green coconut shell that has been sliced open to make the drink.
Lime juice or mint leaves are sometimes added to the drink to improve its flavor. The beverage's ability to prevent dehydration and maintain core body temperature makes it a hot-weather staple. The electrolytes and vital minerals like potassium, sodium, and magnesium found in the tender coconut water used to make the drink aid in the regulation of bodily fluids and the maintenance of hydration.
In the hot summer months, when people in Kolkata are looking for a refreshing drink, gondhoraj ghol is at the top of their list. Gondhoraj ghol is a spiced yogurt drink that takes a twist on the classic buttermilk recipe. Named "King of Limes" because it was first discovered in Bengal, India. Gondhoraj, which is a highly regarded Bengali spice blend, is called "aromatic king" in the language.
Gondhoraj ghol is made by combining buttermilk, salt, roasted cumin powder, and chopped green chilies with gondhoraj lebu (lime) juice. To get a silky texture and light foam, the mixture is whisked. The resulting gondhoraj lebu drink is sour and refreshing, with a hint of citrus in the scent, making it the perfect drink to cool off with on warm summer days.
Next up is Odisha, the state on the eastern coast known for its stunning beaches and temples. Summers get pretty hot in Odisha, and the people here have a few 'cool' drinks they love.
Odias begin longing for their favorite summertime beverage, Bel Pana, as the weather warms up. Bel fruit pulp is combined with water, sugar, and spices like ginger, cardamom, and pepper to create a refreshing beverage that is then cooled and sprinkled with roasted cumin powder before being served.
Whether you know it as bel fruit or wood apple, this fruit is loaded with healthy nutrients. It's the ideal summertime fruit because of its sweet and tart flavor and its cooling effects. Bel Pana is a cooling summer beverage that aids in digestion, temperature regulation, and the prevention of heat strokes. The health of your skin, lungs, and overall body can all benefit from it.
Raw mangoes are the key ingredient in Amba Pana, a refreshing summer favorite from Odisha that's an invigorating drink with a sweet and sour taste, and good for you, too.
Mangoes, especially when eaten raw, are an excellent source of vitamin C and other nutrients that are beneficial to health. The cumin and black salt in the drink are thought to boost gut health and digestion, making it a great option for the warmer months.
The palua flower, also called the butterfly pea blossom, is the key ingredient in the summertime beverage known as Palua Pana, popular in Odisha.
Palua Pana is a pleasant drink with numerous positive effects on health. Palua flowers are high in antioxidants and may reduce inflammation and kill germs. Palua Pana is a great beverage to enjoy during the hot summer months, when people tend to be more irritated and restless due to the heat.
Khajuri Mishri Sharbat
Extremely popular in the Indian state of Odisha during the hot summer months because of its sweet taste and cooling effect, khajuri mishri sharbat is a mixture of dates and mishri, a form of unprocessed sugar.
Khajuri mishri sharbat has a scrumptious flavor and numerous useful medicinal properties. Dates are beneficial to heart health because they include a number of vitamins and minerals, including potassium and magnesium. Mishri, also known as unrefined sugar, is a far better choice than refined sugar since it retains some of the minerals originally present in the plant and has a lower glycemic index, which means it does not induce a sharp increase in blood sugar.
Odia lassi, made with yogurt or curd, is a sweet and creamy drink that is a welcome respite from the heat and has a great taste and several health advantages. Yogurt's calcium and protein content make it a useful food for promoting bone and muscular health. It may possibly have probiotic characteristics that aid in digestive health and strengthen the immune system. Also, the sugar in the drink can give you a quick boost of energy, making it perfect for the hot summer months when you might otherwise feel lethargic.
Bel Sharbat is a refreshing summer drink made from the pulp of the Bel fruit, which is also known as Wood Apple. The fruit has a hard outer shell that needs to be cracked open to access the pulp inside. The pulp is then mixed with water and sugar to create a sweet and tangy drink that is perfect for beating the summer heat. Bel fruit is rich in nutrients such as vitamin C, calcium, and iron. It is also believed to have medicinal properties and is used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine to treat various ailments.
Sattu Sharbat is another popular summer drink from Jharkhand that is made from roasted gram flour. The gram flour is roasted on a low flame until it turns light brown in color and has a nutty aroma. The roasted gram flour is then mixed with water, lemon juice, salt, and sugar to create a refreshing and energizing drink. Sattu is a rich source of protein, fiber, and essential minerals such as iron and magnesium. It is also a low-GI food, which means that it can help regulate blood sugar levels and provide sustained energy throughout the day.
Summer in India can be quite challenging, but these regional drinks will not only help maintain body temperature but also have numerous health benefits. So, next time you visit West Bengal, Odisha, or Jharkhand during the summer, make sure to try these drinks to experience the taste of these cultures.