Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Aam Paana

I am EXCITED. I tried something new. And it turned out FINE.

I was out buying veggies on Sunday when on an impluse, I picked up two Green mangoes. Unripe that is. Rushed back home and rang my faithful R. I had a pencil and paper at hand. "Tell me how to make Aam pana".

She gave me the recipe in her style (which means some one who is not a timid cook and would immediately know all proportions and finer details). I had to ask her to repeat with exact measurements. That meant tsp, tbsp, minutes etc. I varied it a bit. Egad. If she reads this post, she might say, "That is not my Aam pana". In any case, it tasted really nice. Not at first though. It was yummy after I chilled it. Try it, its easy enough.

You will need:

(I used only two small mangoes. If you use more, you will, hopefully be able to increase other ingredients appropriately. I will, stick to two mangoes till I am perfectly sure about it)!
Green (unripe) mangoes 2
Cumin seeds 2 tbsp
Mint leaves 1 small bunch
Rock Salt 1 heaped tsp
Salt 1/4 tsp
Sugar 2-3 tbsp (you can can vary this. I used about 1 & 1/2 since A is not allowed sugar).

How to
1. Wash the mangoes well. Really scrub the skin.
2. Use a knife or a fork and slash / prick holes on to the skin of the mangoes.
3. Boil them in a pan with a little salt (about 1 tsp).
4. Plunge them in cold water to cool them and then peel them.
(This is a very messy process. But I guess practice makes perfect).
5. Dry roast the cumin seeds on a "tawa" or any pan (actually).
6. Coarsely grind them.
7. Mix the ground cumin seeds, rock salt, mint leaves, sugar, salt in a mixer / blender (I really don't know the difference between the two).
8. In a frying pan, add a tsp of oil.
9. Sprinkle some cumin seeds (about a pinch really), one red chillie (I used red chillie flakes), and then added the blended pulp.
10. Add about 2 cups of water (250 ml).
11. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
12. Adjust seasoning. Here you can make it more tangy, salty or sweet, according to your taste.
13. Strain (I did) all the pulp away and chilled the juice.
14. Actually, I put it in the freezer (don't quite know why) and had to thaw it (which i did by just letting it sit on the kitchen counter. Its really hot here, right now). But when it unfroze, it tasted really, really yum.

Usually, Aam pana is served as an apertif. But last night, we had it as Digestif and loved it.

The portions were really small: Half a glass each.


Pragya said...

I have been looking for a repeat Panna experience since 1973!! That is the last time someone served it to me. Since then I keep asking anyone who cared to listen - "I wish I could have that green mango drink again!" And now you have shown the path! Thank you! Gong green mango hunting toute suite!


Sukanya M said...

Best of luck Pragya. Please add a bit more sugar. Trick is to taste it and then adjust accordingly!

archana said...

Interesting recipe

Sirensongs: Indologist At Large said...

Aam paana is a fantastic savoury drink. thanks for sharing.