Solkadi – a drink made using Kokum and coconut – originated from Western Ghats of India. This sweet, tangy, coconutty and spicy drink is very popular in the states of Maharashtra and Goa especially in my home town of Kolhapur.
Solkadi is a soothing drink that is a mix of several flavors. Coconut milk forms the base for this drink. Addition of green chilies provides the right amount of spicy kick. This combination makes solkadi a sweet drink with a hint of spiciness. But the main ingredient providing the drink its true taste is kokum.
Kokum is well known for its digestive, refreshing, cleansing and cooling properties. Use of kokum makes solkadi the perfect soothing accompaniment to any spicy dish.
Obtained from a plant in the mangosteen family, kokum has culinary, pharmaceutical, and industrial uses. Kokum is a great antioxidant. It also works as an anti-carcinogenic and anti-aging agent. And it adds a tangy taste to food. You can use kokum to make a variety of drinks and curries.
In Kolhapur, we serve solkadi as a common starter drink due to its cooling effect on the body. You can quickly and easily make this drink with all the ingredients commonly found in Indian kitchens. For those new to Indian cooking or living outside India, you can easily get the ingredients for this dish from any Indian grocery store.
While making this recipe I have used fresh coconut. For best results, I strongly recommend doing the same. The freshness of the coconut milk soothes the tummy and enhances the flavor of the drink.
Also, before using preserved kokum, lightly rinse it with water. This removes any extra salt used for preserving the kokum along with any other impurities it may have.
For best experience of this drink prepare and consume it while it is fresh. Solkadi makes a perfect accompaniment to Kolhapuri Misal. It provides a cooling effect to the hot and spicy misal. You can also serve this as an unconventional party drink.
So try out this drink and let me know if this was your tummy to heart moment…
200g fresh coconut, sliced
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
6 pieces of kokum (13g)
3 tbsp granulated sugar or brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp chopped cilantro / coriander leaves
2 medium size green chillies
3 cups water
- In a mixer grinder add sliced fresh coconut, cumin seeds, preserved kokum, sugar, green chillies and initially ½ cup of water.
- Grind all the ingredients to a fine paste.
- Add water to the grinder in small quantities at a time and mix it.
- Later in a large mixing bowl strain the mix. With a spatula or a hand press on the remains in the strainer and try to remove as much of the liquid as you can.
- Later discard the remains from the strainer.
- Garnish the solkadi with cilantro leaves and your solkadi is ready to be served.