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Cumin and Fennel Cooler – A Traditional Indian Drink That is Perfect for the Hot Summer Months

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Traditional Indian Drink

A traditional Indian drink with mint, fennel and cumin

This is a traditional Indian drink with a difference!

As you read this recipe you will probably think I’ve lost the plot. If I’m honest, the first time I made it I thought there was no way I was going to like it. A cumin and fennel cooler? I may love Indian food but this traditional Indian drink was a bit weird!

I made it anyway and had fun handing a glass of it to each family member. First my wife Caroline gave it a try. She wrinkled up her face and said it was disgusting. I convinced here to take a few more sips. With the second sip she smiled and with the third she was hooked.

That is exactly how each of my kids tasted it for the first time as well. They went from thinking it was terrible to really liking it within minutes. This really is the perfect summer drink.

It is thirst quenching and fun to serve. If I had to place a bet, I’d bet you will love this traditional Indian drink too. It’s that good and unusual.

Serves 4

Preparation time: 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS for this traditional Indian Drink

2 litres ice cold water
100g (5 cups) mint leaves
Juice of ten lemons
1 Tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
4 Tablespoons salt
12 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons white cumin seeds
2 Tablespoons fennel seeds

Fill a large bowl with the water and mint leaves. Let the leaves soften in the water for about have an hour.

Strain the water into a serving pitcher retaining the mint leaves.

Transfer the leaves to a pestle and mortar and pound the leaves into a paste. Add this paste to the water for about ten minutes. Strain the water again back into the original bowl removing all of the leaves.

Pour the water back into the serving pitcher and add the rest of the ingredients except the cumin and fennel seeds.

Pour the cumin and fennel cooler into four large glasses filled with ice and sprinkle each with about a teaspoon of fennel and cumin seeds.

Serve and enjoy!

This traditional Indian drink is full of surprises.

Would you like to give this traditional Indian drink a touch of the West? We have found that adding a bit of vodka makes it even better. Tequilla works well too especially when it is really cold. It is by no means as good for you but it sure tastes great with a hot curry and a selection of Indian breads and pickles.

I hope you love this traditional Indian drink – Cumin and Fennel Cooler – as much as I do!


Wednesday 30th of November 2011

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