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15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

As summer rolls in, here’s a list of traditional Indian foods and drinks to keep stocked in your kitchen. All these are easily available online.

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As summer rolls in and temperatures begin to soar, it’s important to remember that dehydration can cause serious health concerns. The condition is particularly concerning for the elderly and children, as well as those living with long-term co-morbidities. And it’s not just water that you have to keep in mind — water-based foods that aid digestion are also necessary.

With this in mind, here’s a list of foods and drinks to include in your daily diet to remain cool and healthy:

1. Sattu

Sattu is an underrated superfood that can help beat the heat efficiently. Widely consumed in Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, and Uttar Pradesh, this mixture of ground pulses and cereal can be consumed as both a drink or food. It’s a powerhouse of energy and is rich in dietary fibres, protein, calcium and iron. It can also help avoid constipation, prevent sunstrokes, and control cholesterol levels. Adya Organic’s sattu powder comes as flour, which they say is gluten-free and can be used to make a refreshing summer drink.

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15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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2. Khus Sherbet

This beverage, which is a concoction of khus syrup and water, can cool your body down in the summer. The syrup is made from vetiver grass which has several medicinal properties. It can reduce excessive thirst, prevent dehydration, and is a good source of antioxidants. The product is made of khus grass concentrate, water and milk, which instantly gives a cooling effect.

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15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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3. Bael Juice

This traditional drink has multiple health benefits. Refreshing and tasty at the same time, it nourishes the body with all the required nutrients. It can also aid better digestion. Baels are high in fibre, can prevent sunstrokes, and cleanse the skin. Antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties present in the item help in cholesterol control.

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4. Gulkand

Gulkand is often used in Ayurveda to help with bodily imbalances. It is traditionally prepared using Damask roses. It is a powerful antioxidant that can treat ulcers and acidity. It is said to rejuvenate the stomach and make digestion easy. In addition, it cools down the stomach, which is very essential during summer.

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5. Jaljira

The go-to summer drink for many, this tangy beverage is made using coriander, cumin, ginger, black pepper, kala namak and mint. Ready to make packets are widely available, and all you have to do is stir the mix in water. It can help in detoxification and fights acidity.

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6. Green Mango Chutney

This sweet and spicy condiment is a perfect accompaniment with lunch during the summer. Green mango is a vital source of magnesium, calcium, iron and dietary fibres that detoxify the liver. It is also rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin K. It helps in better digestion and keeps body heat low.

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15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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7. Chaas Masala

Chaas is another favourite drink during the summer, and helps beat the heat. The major ingredients used to prepare chaas masala include mint flakes, black salt, desert salt, roasted cumin, dry ginger and green chilli flakes. Add the required amount of the masala into buttermilk, give it a stir and fresh up your body by consuming it. The drink helps fight constipation and acidity, and prevents dehydration.

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15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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8. Aam Papad

Made with sun-dried raw mango pulp, this item can be a snack as well as a side dish for lunch. It is a sweet and sour preserve that comes with all properties and richness of raw mango. It is most loved by kids due to the perfect blend of sweet and tangy flavours. It helps in digestion and preventing stomach related ailments.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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9. Nannari

Nannari syrup, extracted from the roots of the plant, is a beloved beverage in typical Indian households. It is a naturally sweet drink prepared by just mixing in water or soda. It reduces heat and cools down the body. Nannari also acts as a natural detoxifier. Give the drink a twist by adding a few drops of lime juice.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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10. Aam Kasundi

Belonging to Bengali cuisine, kasundi is a variety of mustard sauces. It has many variations like aam, tomato, and phool, of which aam kasundi is the most popular one. Mustard oil, raw mangoes, garlic, green chilli and two types of mustard seeds are the vital ingredients of a typical aam kasundi. It can reduce the risk of heart diseases and aids easy digestion.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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11. Chandan Kesar Sherbet

Besides being two excellent ingredients for skincare, chandan (sandal) and kesar (saffron) also possess splendid cooling properties. Both have abundant medicinal values that help with a cooler stomach and cleaner skin. Add the sharbat syrup to water or milk and it turns into a refreshing drink. The syrup can also be added as a topping for desserts.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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12. Kokum

There’s no better feeling than sipping on a tall glass of chilled sparkling Kokum juice on a hot mid-day afternoon. It is extracted out of the kokum fruit known for its anti-acidic properties that help in better digestion. It is ideal for diabetic patients and can also help in losing weight.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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13. Rooh Afza

Made with the essences of coriander, orange, pineapple, carrot, rose petals, spinach and mint, rooh afza is an amazing refresher that is a must-have during scorching summer. It is mixed with water or milk along with grated nuts to form an unmatchable drink. It is a common beverage in India and neighbouring countries such as Pakistan and Bangladesh. The drink relieves dehydration and prevents diarrhoea.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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14. Thandai

An abundant source of antioxidants, thandai can help fight acidity and bloating and provides cooling energy in the summer. It helps in bettering immunity and is good for the skin. It can be prepared by boiling thandai powder in milk and chilling before consuming.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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15. Imli Candy

If you’re an Indian, chances are you have many childhood memories connected with this candy. Besides its peculiar taste, the sweet is rich in immunity boosters. It can help fight cholesterol and is ideal for diabetic patients as well. It is also a quick fix for a sudden stomach ailment and aids good digestion. Imli is also good for the heart.

15 Traditional Food Secrets You Need For A Summer-Ready Kitchen

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(Edited by Divya Sethu)

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