Ginger and palm sugar punch (Panakam), Spiced Buttermilk (Neer Mor) and Lentil green mango salad (Kosumalli)
This is a bit late for posting a Rama Navami recipe but as with all festival recipes, I record them here for posterity. I’m sure this will come handy in the years to come to me or to another reader so it’s better late than never. As always with all the festival recipes here, these are Amma’s recipes.
Panakam, Neer Mor are not just Rama Navami recipes by the way. While legend goes that this was served during Sita and Rama’s (Hindu mythological God and Goddess for the uninitiated) wedding and during Rama’s birth, the tradition seems to have stuck as these are the post celebration drinks served to this day during most traditional South Indian Hindu weddings and birthdays.
The best part – they are probably some of the easiest festival recipes to make. And they are all raw which means no stove top needed and no messy clean ups so as you can guess this is my favorite festival recipe as well:) (Not counting the tadka/seasoning to the buttermilk of course where there is some stove top heating involved, but that step can be skipped if you’d like it to be completely raw. I recommend adding the seasoning as that adds the real traditional South Indian taste)
The panakam can easily pass off as a summer cooler punch the next time you have a summer lunch get together. Its sweet but the ginger and lemon give it the apple lemon tea kind of zing and tart taste, perfect for a hot day.
And the neer mor (moar) or light buttermilk spiced with ginger and curry leaves is the perfect coolant for a hot summer outing in the sun. “Buttermilk cools the system” as my Appa (dad) says- this is still his go to drink when he returns home from his trips to the vegetable market. And according to him the secret to his “zen”:)
Recipe for Panakam:
- 1/2 cup palm sugar or jaggery
- 1 tsp dry ginger pd
- 2 cardamom crushed (you may add the skin as well for flavor but we used only the crushed seeds)
- 1 tbsp lemon juice (optional)
- Yogurt -1/2 cup.
- Water 1 1/2 cups
- Asafoetida -1/4 tsp
- 1-green chili crushed,
- few curry leaves
- salt to taste
- seasoning -1 tsp mustard seeds , 1/2 chopped green chilli.
- 1/2 cup Indian yellow moong dal (skinned and split green gram)
- 2 green chillies
- 3 tbsp grated coconut
- 1/2 raw mango grated
- /1/2 cucumber cut in to very small pieces
- salt to taste