The rains have only made a guest appearance thus far and it’s hotter than ever. Instead of turning to chemical-loaded fizzy drinks, we suggest you try healthier ways to cool your body. Of course, you can stick to plain old coconut water and buttermilk but plain is so boring! The kitchen houses something healthy yet yummilicious for everyone; the trick is to see beyond the obvious and get creative.
Here are some food and drink ideas that will help you beat the heat–naturally and effortlessly.
While coconut water in itself is amritjal, you can give it a spin by adding sabja (basil seeds) and khus syrup to it. Sabja and khus syrup – both are known to give a cooling effect to the body. While you will enjoy this quick drink, it is also a good option to serve your guests instead of high-calorie iced teas and cola drinks.
You could also drink the much-loved coconut water as a delicious smoothie. Put coconut water into a blender with a scoop of fresh avocado and a dash of honey to complete the concoction. Enjoy this wholesome drink with your friends over a long chat.
There’s nothing quite as healthy as lemon water, which is known to cool your system and improve your immunity and gut health. As for the good-old nimbu-pani, a generous amount of crushed mint leaves will quickly transform it into a homemade virgin mojito. For rose syrup lovers, you can add a dash of it to your nimbu-paani and enjoy the sweet, delicious drink. Needless to say, it is best served chilled.
All-Natural Ice Creams
While ice creams are the go-to option for anyone wanting to indulge in something sweet in hot weather, they’re often loaded with unwanted calories. We give you quick and easy options to make your own ice cream at home–these versions of ice cream are a lot healthier and will leave you asking for more!
What is the mantra, you ask? Frozen fruits.
Keep a bag of peeled and cut bananas in the freezer overnight and blend it in the morning with some peanut-butter, and you’re done! We promise you’ll love this healthy, sugar-free ice cream.
If you can spare an extra moment then try these other quick-fixes: Pour some coconut milk in a glass with chia seeds and vanilla essence, and top this up with tons of mango pieces; leave it in the fridge to set. Once set, dig into the delectable sugar-free pudding that you whipped up.
You could also simply dunk mango pieces in melted dark chocolate and leave it to cool and set in the refrigerator, overnight. Next day, enjoy the bites as it is–straight from the refrigerator into your mouth. Alternately, you can make banana bites in the same way. The trick here is to not let the fruit thaw, unless you enjoy mushy bites (no pun intended!)
Another healthy dessert to beat the heat–fruit popsicles, also called fruit pops. You will require popsicle molds for this one; available at Crawford Market in Mumbai or similar markets. Simply line the molds with thinly sliced fruits of your choice (kiwi, peach, banana, berries etc) and pour in juice or coconut water in the remaining space. Close the mold tightly and let it freeze for over six hours, then go ahead and slurp on the treat! People of all ages will enjoy this guilt-free popsicle.
We say give your kitchen a glance, for it houses some excellent natural ingredients that will keep you cool and healthy this season without burning a hole in your pocket.
Do you have some cooling recipes or ideas you’d like to share? Tell us in the comments below.
Image Credit: Nikhil Mudaliar