Kairi Panha – Raw Mango Drink

Kairi Panha is a traditional Maharashtrian raw mango drink. Here are three different preparations to choose from.

Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 7 min
Total time: 12 min
*Timings are for the raw uncooked Kairi Panha.
Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:

Raw (unripe) mangoes: 2
Jaggery: 3/4 cup
Cardamom powder: 1/2 teaspoon

Addition for Uncooked Kairi Panha

Natural rose water: 1/2 teaspoon

Addition for Cooked Kairi Panha

Saffron: a pinch

Addition for Roasted Kairi Panha

Fresh mint leaves: 1/2 cup

Directions:

  • Uncooked Kairi Panha
  • Lightly peel and shred the green mangoes using the larger holes of the grater. Add the jaggery and salt to the grated mango and let it sit for 10 minutes. Puree the mix in 2 batches in a blender with 2 cups of water per batch, then strain using a coarse sieve. Take the leftover pulp from the sieve, add 2 more cups of water, puree and filter again. Then discard the leftover pulp. Add the cardamom powder and rose water to the filtered juice. Serve cool, but do not chill, to enjoy all the subtle flavors of raw mango Panha.

  • Cooked Kairi Panha
  • Pressure-cook the green mangoes with the peel for about 10 minutes or until soft. Once the mangoes have cooled down, peel them and reserve the pulp. Puree the pulp, add the jaggery and let it sit for a few minutes until the jaggery dissolves. Then add the cardamom and puree everything in a blender. Dilute this with 6 cups of chilled water. The Panha will have a more pronounced flavor if served an hour after preparation.

  • Roasted Kairi Panha
  • This method gives the juice a great, smoky taste. Place the raw mangoes on a bed of hot charcoal embers and spread some more embers on top of the mangoes, burying them completely. At this point, there should be no flames. Let the mangoes roast under the coals for about 20 minutes. The skin may be charred, but the flesh inside will be cooked to perfection. Discard the peel and puree the roasted mango flesh with jaggery in a mixer. Then add the cardamom and mint leaves. Dilute this with 8 cups of chilled water. Enjoy!

Tips:

  • For best results, choose big, firm, raw mangoes with a strong, fragrant smell (like Alphonso and Salem Gundu) and a thick, dark skin with sap marks.
  • Grind the cardamom with its peel for a better flavor.

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This article is based on an excerpt from the May 2014 issue of Forest Flower. Pay what you want and download. (set ‘0’ for free). Print subscriptions are also available.