If there’s one food that finds a place on the lunch table across India, especially during the summer season, it is dahi (curd). And let’s just say that it isn’t surprising at all, given how it is not only good for health but can also be consumed in several different ways. Curd is super cooling for our body and works as an excellent probiotic that helps with digestion and provides calcium. 

Naturally, not only are curds served at mealtimes as a side dish, they are also whipped into various cooling drinks. In fact, each state and community have its own blends and flavours made with curd. From the good old salty-savoury chaas to sweet lassi, dahi-based drinks are guaranteed to be creamy and refreshing. While the classic lassi can be consumed plain, many people spruce it up with fruits. An excellent summer special example is that of mango lassi, in which all you need is a sweet mango like an alphonso and blend it with some curd. Thick, fleshy fruits seem to go best when it comes to lassi – bananas, chikoo or strawberries. 

Chaas, on the other hand, works on spices. So, all your hing (asafoetida), mint or mustard tossed in with dahi come together perfectly. 

But we are here to go beyond just lassi and chaas to bring you a host of dahi-based drinks from around the country. From Bengal’s gondhoraj ghol to Maharashtra’s piyush, here’s a list of top dahi-based drinks that you can easily prepare at home.  

1. Neer Mor 

A savoury, dahi-based drink with several versions of it found across Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala. Neer mor is made as an offering during Ram Navami, but can be enjoyed otherwise during the summers as it is extremely cooling in the hot season. It is a brilliant digestive aid, due to the addition of ginger, and spices like hing, cumin and curry leaves.

 

2. Gondhoraj Ghol 

A delicious Bengali spin to your regular sweet lassi, gondhoraj is a type of lime in Bengal with a tantalising fragrance. It is also known as the king of lemons and is a distant cousin of kaffir lime. Gondhoraj, though, is bigger but milder in taste. It is known to liven up watery dal and even add a flavour to your fish and meat curries. To make gondhoraj ghol, the dahi is spiked with the Bengali gondhoraj lime, resulting in a perfect summer treat.

 

3. Piyush 

A decadent combination of shrikhand and buttermilk or dahi, piyush is a Maharashtrian drink, which literally translates to nectar or ambrosia. One sip and you’ll know how it is a very apt name, especially if you add a bit of mango pulp to it. To give it a more refreshing twist, simply substitute the plain shrikhand with a mango-flavoured one, and you’ll see the magic.