Whenever we talk about summer and thirst simlutaneously there comes the thought of shikanji - a summer drink with powerful cooling power. Some says nimbu pani, some says lemonade, some says shikanji. Shikanji is the most common word for this drink. The easy to made within little time drink ever in hot summers is very powerful when it comes to cool down mind and body instantly. Everyone can make it very speedily and get a relief from heat and burning sensation in the summer from loo. This is a remedy to dehydration caused by vommiting and loose motions too. This is very cheap when comes to cost and time.
We call it nimbu pani because generally it is made with nimbu or we may say lemon in english and salt (any). But adding more ingredients make it more relishing, there is nothing like any ingredient is extra as every ingredient has it's special role. I make it by adding sugar, basil seeds, cumin, pepper, mint, chat masala or even amchur sometimes to make it more tangy.
Sugar or any sweetner like honey, jaggery, brown sugar etc. can be used. Black salt or rock salt make it balanced in taste when sugar is added. Mint make it more cooling and give a cool flavour as well. When basil seeds are added it takes more time to make as basil seeds are soaked in water before making it for half hour to get fluffed up and drinkable or eatable. Basil seeds make it healthier than normal version and increase immunity too. Basil seeds are also known as falooda seeds/ tulsi seeds/ sabja seeds and easily available at any prachun/ general store/ even online. This is a super drink during summer and every class people can afford it so with the taste/ flavour and need the ingredients goe up and down too. Everything from sugar to salt can be increased and decreased according to medical condition, taste and need.
Ingredients (for five servings):
- Water 5 glass
- Sugar 5 tablespoons
- Salt 1/4 tablespoon
- Black salt 1/2 tablespoon
- Black pepper powder 1/4 tablespoon
- Roasted cumin powder 1/4 tablespoon
- Mint leaves paste 1/4 tablespoon
- Lemon 3 juicy piece
- Basil seeds 1 tablespoon
- Ice cubes 10-15 pieces (optional)
- Mint Leaves one-two leave for each glass to be served
- Black pepper 1 tablespoon
- White salt 1 tablespoon
- Lemon one or two slice for each glass to be served
- First of all soak sabja seeds in water for half an hour and strain them in a container.
- Now take five glass water in a jug. Water can be cold as well as normal, I preffered normal water as it is easy to dissolve sugar in normal water rather than cold water.
- Add five tablespoon sugar to this and stir with the help of a electric beater or traditional beater or you may use spoon to dissolve sugar.
- Once the sugar get dissolved add both salt and stir well.
- Now add mint paste to the mixture.
- Now squeeze lemons in a bowl with teh help of a squeezer and remove seeds of lemon manually or with the help of a sieve. Lime can also be used instead of lemon.
- Now add lemon juice to the solution in jug. and stir once.
- Add roasted cumin powder. Cumin can be roasted on a hot tawa\ pan and used without powder with a little mashin on handa only but the powder is better due to it's thin texture and classical aroma.
- Add black pepper to the solution and stir very well.
- Strain the mixture with the help of sieve and add sabja seeds over it as per taste. Lemonade is ready.
- Now, for serving, in a plate mix one tablespoon black pepper and one tablespoon salt and take a glass and wet the glass linning with a lemon. Now put the glass upside down over the mixture so that the mixture sticks over the linning.
- Add 3-4 ice cubes to the glass. Now pour the mixture in the glass and put lemon slice on it's linning by making a small cut in the lemon slice. Also garnish with one or two mint leaves. One lemonade serving is ready, you can repeat the process for all servings.