There are many ways to prepare Kokum Saar, and it is up to you how simple or complex you want the beverage to be.
When in Maharashtra, you cannot miss the Sol Kadhi, the soul-satiating beverage made with an indigenous berry known as Kokum (Garcinia indica). These kokum berries belong to the mangosteen family and have sharp, sweet and tangy flavour. One of the most popular usages of berries is in the making of Solanchi Kadhi or Kokum Saar, a pink coloured beverage. The rejuvenating beverage is so mild and feisty at the same time. Its unusual ingredients, like coconut, salt, masala, coriander leaves, also makes it comparable to ‘spicy’ beverages and soups like Shikanji or Rasam. In fact, in many parts of Konkan, the pink-coloured treat is actually also called Kokum Rasam.
There are many ways to prepare Kokum Saar, and it is up to you how simple or complex you want the beverage to be. The idea is to make a soul-satisfying drink that provides instant relief, so adding too many spices, herbs and elements can actually defeat the whole purpose.
In this recipe by chef M. Kasture, Executive chef of The Ashok Delhi and recipient of ‘Best Chef’ award by the prestigious Department of National Tourism, keeps the recipe simple, minimal and effective. All you need are five ingredients, Kokum, fresh coconut, salt, coriander leaves and garlic. Yes, you heard us.
The secret of legendary recipes doesn’t lie in its tall list of ingredients, but the accents and flavours that can be produced with the ingredients used. So, if two pods of garlic are enough to give a hot and pungent kick to the drink, why must you look elsewhere.
Without much ado, here’s the recipe of Solanchi Kadhi or Kokum Saar you had been looking for.
SOLANCHI KADHI (KOKUM SAAR)
1. Soak kokum in water for 6-7 hours.
2. Strain the water and keep aside and squeeze the pulp from soaked kokum and add this to strained kokum water.
3. Grate coconut and boil in water to make coconut milk.
4. Add kokum water in coconut milk and add salt.
5. Garnish with chopped coriander and garlic.