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Showing posts with label Juice smoothie and shakes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Juice smoothie and shakes. Show all posts

Monday, May 2, 2016

PANAKAM ~ A Traditional Healthy Drink

Panakam is a traditional drink prepared in Indian households, particularly South India. One of the ancient recipes prepared by our ancestors to consume during summer and also distributed in temples on special occasions in summer. Panakam is a delicious combination of jaggery, tamarind juice, dry ginger powder and cardamom. The ingredients used tell us a lot about the wise choice and knowledge our ancestors possessed about what they consumed according to the season. Each of the ingredients used has its own health benefit and most importantly it balances the three doshas of our body.

I would call it an instant refreshing thirst quencher and definitely a healthy option when compared to Colas and other aerated drinks. It is prepared during Rama Navami festival (Birth of Lord Rama) as Neivedhyam (offering to God) in large quantities and distributed to all.

Refreshing, delicious. body coolant, thirst quencher, healthy, simple ingredients, no cook drink - Do we need another reason to prepare it? Here comes my twist to this wonderful drink, without spoiling its original taste at the same time not compromising on the healthy ingredients.

I had a good stock of lemons at home (a usual for summer) and wanted to put it to good use. Lemonade is nice but  I hate monotony! At the same time, I din't want to use it in cooking, I was looking for a drink. Ah! why not replace tamarind juice and prepare panakam was the instant thought. All excited to experiment, I started juicing the lemons but ho, I ran out of jaggery! Not wanting to use sugar, I used palm sugar syrup, which I prepare and store to use when required for sweet dishes. Also, it will give the colour which tamarind juice gives if I had used that. Enough said, let me give you the recipe now.


Lemon - 3
Palm sugar syrup - 1/2 cup (adjust according to tatse)
Water - 31/2 cups (adjust according to taste)
Dry ginger powder - a pinch
Cardamom - 3-4  


Cut the lemon and remove the seeds, squeeze the lemon by hand or using a sqeezer. Pour the lemon juice in a wide vessel or bowl and mix the palm sugar syrup using a spoon. Add water and give it a good mix. Please adjust the syrup and water according to your taste. Add the dry ginger powder. Using a mortar and pestle, pound the cardamom and add it to the juice. Mix well and serve. 

Monday, March 28, 2016


There're days we like to start our day with a light and healthy breakfast. A smoothie or a health shake is what strikes us first. Smoothies are filling, healthy, light and easy to prepare on a busy day. Though they're easy and fuss free to prepare, it gets boring to have the same everyday. Why not try and play with spices is what struck my mind.

Cinnamon is one of the few spices that's used in cooking, baking, to spice tea and flavour cakes. It pairs beautifully with fruits and love the aroma of fresh cinnamon in cakes. This urged me to try using it for a smoothie too. I had planned on a banana smoothie for breakfast to make it easy as it was a busy day ahead. To make it interesting, added this wonderful spice and oh it was heaven!

The creamy banana with cinnamon makes it rich in taste. Make sure you use fresh cinnamon powder, though you can use store bought ones, the fresh one has its place. For sweetness, it has honey, as you all know I don't like to use white sugar and avoid it as much as I can. You're free to use sugar or any sweetener as per your taste. I've used milk to blend them, vegans can choose a nut milk instead. 


To make a tall glass of smoothie

Banana - 2 (I've used hill banana)
Milk - 1 cup
Water - 1/4 cup
Honey - 2 tbsp
Cinnamon powder - 1/4 tsp


Chop the bananas into small pieces, add it to a blender along with milk, honey, water and cinnamon. Blend all the ingredients together in a blender till you get a creamy frothy texture. Serve it immediately or cold. Here you go, your breakfast smoothie is ready!
You can use all milk and no water for a nice thick smoothie. In that case, add 1+1/4 cups of milk. Vegans can substitute nut milk in the above recipe. The milk quantity remains same for nut milk but please add water if you're using a nut milk.

If you're serving this for kids, replace milk with vanilla ice cream and they'll love it! If you're using a mixer jar to blend, first blend the banana, milk and honey nicely. Then add the water and cinnamon. Also, try it with other fruit combinations and drop in your feedback. 

Thursday, January 14, 2016


This smoothie is an ideal breakfast for kids as well as adults. It's vegan too! Made with Arabian dates and raw peanuts, it has all the necessary nutrients for a power packed breakfast. At home, I avoid using sugar as much as I can so I've used honey for this one. You can use sugar if you prefer.

*Peanuts are not only good in taste they're also rich in monounsaturated fats and numerous other nutrients that have shown to promote heart health. It's a legume and not a nut! They're rich in antioxidants and folic acid. They're low in carbs but packed with protein, vitamins, fibre and minerals. It has a low glycemic index, hence suitable for diabetic patients too.

Since we're using raw peanuts here, it should be soaked in water overnight or at least for 6-8 hours. This eliminates digestive issues caused by having raw peanut. Please don't skip this process. It is necessary.  


For a big glass of smoothie

Raw peanuts - a handful, soaked in water overnight. 
Arabian dates - 6
Honey - 1/2 tbsp 
Water - 1 cup or more


Blend the nuts with little water to a smooth paste, then add dates and honey. Use more water if required to get the smoothie consistency. Pour it in a glass and enjoy! 

Feel free to use any fruit of your choice along with dates or without dates. 
*Source - 

Saturday, July 25, 2015


Sabja seeds/black tulasi seeds/basil seeds has a cooling property and a must have during summer. Apart from cooling the body it also helps in metabolism and cutting the cholesterol level in our body. In India it is used in preparing Faloodas (a cold beverage made with milk, rose syrup, fruits, basil seeds and vermicelli). These tiny seeds are rich in anti oxidants, omega-3, minerals and fibre. It reduces food cravings, lowers blood pressure.

At home I add these to lemon juice or simply mix 2 tsp in a glass of water and consume. Here, I've added it to strawberry milkshake.


Strawberry - 7
Milk - 1/2 cup
Water - 1/2 cup 
Chia seeds - 1 tsp
Sugar as required


Wash and chop the strawberries into halves and puree it in a mixer with water and sugar. Then add milk and check for sugar. Pour it in a glass and add chia seeds, give it a light stir. Its ready to have!!