Image by XcBiker via Flickr
The simplest of drinks the people used to consume in some tropical countries like India to combat the heat in summer is the milk of rice fermented for two to three days making it tarty and smelly and diluted with water. When the drink is taken enormously to fill the belly no amount of atmospheric heat outside in these summer days can be able to dent the body. This is the age old practice, a culture that has been in profound use in most of the tropical countries where rice is the favourite dish. But due to advent of modern life styles to make such a drink from the rice is very difficult. First of all extracting the milk by cooking rice in earthen pot and its fermentation is not possible; as fermentation can be achieved essentially in earthen bowls which are a very rare commodity in these days. The earthen pot makers have lost their profession to other sundry jobs as there is no such market to provide them the earning for their livelihood. Secondly the processing of the rice is not only to be done in a earthen pot to extract the milk but the fuel is preferably required to be wood. As these ingredients are impossible to get abundantly the practice of preparation of such natural drinks has been lost to oblivion. The coming generation will be wondered to hear the existence of such delicacies in our society. This is a civilisatonal loss. When the civilisation moves forward these drinks yields to its modern corporate formats like Pepsi, Limca and a host of other formatted, bottled drinks.
The Pepsi culture has unobtrusively intruded into the lives of the poorest of the poors as one can see every remotest village shop popping up the canes of empty bottles in its front veranda.
Some days ago there was a vehement counter campaign against these bottled drinks by some environment concerned NGOs showing the unacceptable pesticide levels contained in these drinks, but the marketing strategy has defeated the campaign and the sale is soaring high since then.Surprisingly it never reduced.
Here I venture to suggest a natural and cheap drink that can be easily homemade and can be consumed by mass with much more health benefits. It is the lemon water. There are a number of health benefits besides to quench the summer thirst.
Lemon is a citrus fruit grown in tropical countries. It harvests through out the year. In summer the demand outgrows the production hence it becomes a little expensive but much less than all other citrus fruits in the market. Preparations of the drink is very very easy. Just cut the lemon horizontally into two parts and squeeze to drop the juices into the water kept in the glass jar, remove the seeds by filtration and add sugar or salt to provide a palatable taste. The drink is ready.
The innumerable health benefits it provides can be seen here.