Shikanji, also known as shikanjvi or shikanjbeen, is a traditional Indian drink that is commonly served during the summer months as a refreshing beverage. It is a lemonade-like drink that is made with a combination of freshly squeezed lemon juice, sugar, water, and a variety of spices, such as cumin, ginger, and black pepper.
In some variations, it may also include mint leaves, chaat masala, or other spices depending on the recipe. It is typically served over ice and garnished with mint leaves or slices of lemon.
Shikanji is popular in various parts of India, particularly in the northern region, where it is commonly sold by street vendors during the summer months. It is also a popular drink to serve during religious festivals and other special occasions.
health benefits of shikanji
- Hydration: Shikanji is a great way to stay hydrated during the hot summer months, as it is made with water and can help to prevent dehydration.
- Digestion: The spices used in shikanji, such as cumin and ginger, can help to stimulate digestion and improve gut health.
- Immunity: The vitamin C content in lemon juice can help to boost your immune system, which can help to protect against infections and diseases.
- Antioxidants: Lemon juice contains antioxidants that can help to protect against damage caused by free radicals.
- Cooling Effect: Shikanji is a cooling drink that can help to reduce body heat and provide relief from the heat during the summer months.
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3-4 lemons)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp roasted cumin powder
- 1/2 tsp ginger powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper powder
- 4 cups cold water
- Ice cubes
- Mint leaves for garnish
- In a large pitcher, combine the freshly squeezed lemon juice, sugar, cumin powder, ginger powder, and black pepper powder.
- Add 4 cups of cold water to the pitcher and stir well until the sugar dissolves completely.
- Taste the Shikanji and adjust the sweetness and spices to your liking.
- Chill the Shikanji in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or until ready to serve.
- To serve, fill glasses with ice cubes and pour the Shikanji over the ice.
- Garnish with mint leaves and serve immediately.
- Enjoy your homemade Shikanji as a refreshing summer drink!
Shikanji is a versatile drink that can be enjoyed on its own or paired with a variety of dishes. It tastes best when served chilled. Chill the drink in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving.
Its is a great drink to pair with spicy food, as it can help to cool down the heat. It can be served as a welcome drink for guests during summer parties or gatherings. You can also turn shikanji into a mocktail by adding a splash of soda water or sparkling water to the drink.
Tips and Variations
- Use fresh lemons for the best flavor and nutritional value. Squeeze the lemons just before making the shikanji.
- You can adjust the sweetness and spice levels to your liking. If you prefer a sweeter drink, add more sugar. If you like it spicier, add more cumin, ginger, or black pepper.
- Let the drink sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
- Add ice cubes just before serving to ensure that the drink stays cold and refreshing.
- Don’t be afraid to experiment with different variations by adding fresh fruits, chaat masala, or jaljeera powder to the drink.
- Serve shikanji in a tall glass with ice cubes and a slice of lemon for a refreshing summer drink.
- Is shikanji a good summer drink?
Yes, it is a refreshing summer drink that can help to keep you hydrated and cool during the hot summer months.
- Can I make shikanji without sugar?
Yes, you can make it without sugar by substituting it with a natural sweetener like honey, agave nectar, or stevia.
- How long can I store shikanji in the refrigerator?
You can store it in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days in a covered container or pitcher. However, it is best to consume it as soon as possible for the best taste and nutritional value.
Enjoy the Refreshment
There you have it! Your homemade Shikanji Nimbu Pani is ready to beat the summer heat. The zesty flavors of lemon, combined with the earthy notes of cumin and the kick of black salt, make this drink an absolute delight for your taste buds. It’s not just refreshing; it’s an explosion of flavors in every sip.