Keeping your body hydrated is extremely important to beat the summer heat. Besides bael juice and other healthy cooling drinks, you can also try kokum water or kokum juice that has many health benefits.
A purple coloured berry, kokum is indigenous to the western coast of India and is commonly used in foods in Gujarat, Maharashtra and southern states. Kokum is often halved and dried before use. It adds a red colour and sweet-and-sour taste to dishes.
Health benefits of kokum juice
Kokum is known to have many medicinal properties, besides preventing dehydration and sunstroke. Garcinol in kokum acts as an antioxidant and immunity booster, and minimises the risk of illnesses. It is anti-bacterial, anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory. The fruit is rich in B-complex vitamins such as niacin, folates and thiamine. Kokum juice is also known to boost digestion, preventing bloating, constipation or irritable bowel movements, according to medium.com.
According to International Research Journal of Pharmacy, kokum is used as a weight-loss supplement as it is anorectic (controls appetite resulting in lesser food consumption). The hydroxycitric acid present in the fruit fights cholesterol. In Ayurveda, it is traditionally used for delayed menstruation, intestinal parasites, skin rashes and burns.
How to make kokum juice
Here’s how you can make kokum juice, courtesy chef Sanjeev Kapoor.
1/2 cup – Kokum pieces
1 cup – Sugar
1 tsp – Roasted cumin powder
1 tsp – Rock salt
16-18 – Ice cubes
* Put the kokum pieces in a deep non-stick pan.
* Add 2-3 cups of water and sugar and mix well. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes until the pieces are soft.
* Cool it to room temperature and grind in the mixer along with its water to make a paste.
* Add cumin powder, lemon juice and rock salt in the mixer and grind to make a smooth paste. Strain. This is the kokum concentrate.
* Put a few 2-3 tbsp of kokum concentrate in a glass, add ice cubes and chilled water and mix well. Serve.