The eternal summer cooler: Aam panna

Summers are upon us, the scorching heat fairly wringing us out and most of us yearn for thirst quenchers. In the North Indian summers, we had 3 staples, Shikanjvi, Roohafzha and panna. Shared here is the panna recipe.

Ingredients:

Unripe mango: 1 medium sized

Sugar: 2 tbsp (more if sweeter is wanted, though not advised)

Roasted, ground cumin powder: 1/2 tsp

Black Salt: to taste

Asfoetida (hing) : a pinch

Optional: Dried Ginger powder (sondh): a pinch

Method:

Thoroughly wash the unripe mango, in fact scrub skin, make lateral cuts on the skin with knife. In a saucepan, pour water covering the mango, put on flame to boil. Once boiling point has been reached, add other ingredients. Reduce flame and continue until water has been reduced to one-third. Turn off flame, allow to cool. Once cooled, crush mango to extract all pulp, discard seeds and skin, blend if required.

Check for required sweetness and salt. Pour into a jug or bottle and keep in refrigerator. When required, pour one-third of concentrated blend into glass, add cold water, ice cubes and stir well.

Makes for a wonderful refresher.

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