Spiced Yogurt Drink is called Sambharam, a probiotic rich traditional drink made with thinned out yogurt and crushed spices made during hot and humid Kerala summers. The heat from the spices will make you sweat and instantly cools off the body. Yogurt calms the fire inside the body hence bringing down the excess body heat and balance the body temperature.
Traditionally the butter is hand churned and removed from the freshly made thick full fat yogurt adding water to it. The remaining runny yogurt water mixture without the fat is called buttermilk.
In Kerala sambharam also goes by pacha moru (meaning raw or uncooked buttermilk) or morum vellum (diluted yogurt). A summer must have for the hot and humid Kerala summer climate. Usually served as a welcome drink too for anyone coming home during mid day on regular scorching hot day. Sambharam is served for Kerala sadhya either in a glass along with water or at the end of the meal in the palm of your scooped hand or along with very little rice. This acts as a natural digestant after the heavy feast.
CONTENTS ( JUMP TO )
- Why you should try this Sambharam recipe ?
- Benefits of having spiced yogurt drink
- Ingredients and substitutes
- Points to note while making sambharam
- Steps for making the drink
- Other popular yogurt recipes
While full fat yogurt with cream is used to make plain salted lassi or the most popular Indian sweet Mango lassi Kerala sambharam steers clear of any creamy richness and concentrates on soothing and calming the body.
The leftover yogurt water only after churning all the rich cream / butter goes for drinking and may be used in curries like mambazha puliserry (a sweet mango curry) or pineapple puliserry (sweet pineapple curry) . While this is the ideal process of making the base of this drink for convenience sake we can substitute it with store bought yogurt, greek yogurt or laban (Middle Eastern buttermilk ) etc. It is popular during Ramadan, where it is consumed during iftar and suhur. This is done to pacify the extreme stomach heat and rehydrate the food and water deprivation before or after fasting.
While the use of spice in food in varying proportions raises the body heat generally. Some of them will make you sweat out the body heat on hot summer days. The sweat will cool off the body as per Ayurveda. Such spice combinations come into play here. This technique is "ushnam ushnena shanthi" in Sanskrit. Which loosely translates to heat relieves heat.
Benefits of spiced yogurt drink
- Natural and healthy thirst quencher
- Probiotic rich
- Gut friendly
WHY YOU SHOULD TRY THIS SAMBHARAM RECIPE?
Healthy, paleo diet friendly, PROVEN IMMUNE BOOSTING recipe that is insanely simple to make at the last minute. This spiced yogurt drink has medicinal properties known to cool off the body heat. Provides immediate hydration to the body and aids digestion after a heavy meal. Above all Ideal healthy summer drink for all ages.
- TASTE: The light and salty tartness of yogurt with the contrast of heat and aroma of ginger and chilies. Finished off with herbaceous curry leaves.
- TIME: Takes hardly 5 minutes to make this drink !
- EASE: This is such a flexible recipe to make substitutes too. You can whip up the drink with ingredients you have on hand.
Kerala style sambharam is the probiotic rich, spiced yogurt drink for the hot and humid climate to cook off the body instantly. It is made from the runny yogurt water mixture from which all the fat has been removed. Spices are crushed and added to it for added flavor and health benefits.
The best time to consume yogurt based drink is mid day when the Sun's heat is at its peak to reap cooling benefits out of the drink. It is best avoided Sun down as the body develops phlegm. As per Ayurveda people prone to Kapha dosha should not consume yogurt based food after mid day. Kapha dosa is associated with body forming mucus, excess body fluids and allergies.
Yogurt is known to induce Kapha or phlegm as per Ayurveda medicine hence avoided after mid day.
Lesser known fact is properties of yogurt will hinder with the action of anti venom in case of reptile bite after dark.
Chili adds heat and aroma to the buttermilk / sambharam that makes the body sweat and cool off on a hot humid day. The ginger aids in digestion after a full meal.
Sambharam is the healthiest dairy product. It is a natural probiotic drink with live cultures most helpful for boosting immune system, good for bones, aids digestion. It contains calcium, proteins, vitamin C, B6. Traditionally made buttermilk is fat free too. Spiced yogurt drink is better than any other soft drinks available in the supermarkets.
Points to note while making sambharam :
- Blend the yogurt well. Simply beating yogurt with a spoon does not give a smooth texture. Blend the yogurt well in a blender.
- Traditionally wooden whisk - ' math ' helps in achieving the smooth blended texture of drink. Do not allow the yogurt solids floating separate from the liquid.
- Adding chili and ginger in the yogurt can make the drink very spicy hence add only as per tolerance level.
- If you heat tolerance level is low do not leave the chilies and ginger in the drink for too long as this will spike the heat to an inedible level.
- Birds Eye chili called kanthari moulage is 10 times spicier than jalapeño.
- Use fresh ingredients for maximum taste and health benefit.
- No heating hence the probiotic is intact .
If the drink turns out too spicy :
- Add more yogurt and water
- Add fruit pulps like mango or strawberry
- If nothing else is available you can always add more sugar
Variety of flavors to sambharam :
- Mint leaves crushed
- Lime leaves crushed
- Lime or lemon juice
- Shallot -1 crushed ( or Small onion / red pearl onion ) . Add only if the drink is going to consume immediately. Else the raw onion will spoil the dairy fast.
Steps on how to make yogurt drink :
SERVING AND STORAGE : Usually served as a welcome drink too for anyone coming home during mid day on regular days. Sambharam is a regular item in Kerala sadya. Serve either in a glass along with water or at the end of the meal along with very little rice on banana leaf . This acts as a natural digestant after the heavy feast.
LEFTOVER : Strain the spices and keep the liquid in an air tight bottle in the refrigerator and use within a day or two. If you keep with the spices the drink may turn out very spicy as it sits.
MAKE AHEAD : Keep the beaten yogurt ready in the refrigerator and mix with spices half hour before serving for the flavors to mingle well.
Other popular yogurt based recipes to try :
Snack : Baked yogurt kabab
Spiced yogurt drink
- Mortar and pestle
- 1 cup Plain yogurt (With probiotic)
- 2 -3 cups Water
- 1 Ripe chili Used Fresno here but birds eye chili is used traditionally.
To crush :
- Rock salt
- 1 inch Ginger
- 1/2 to 1 Green chili Use as per heat tolerance Birds eye chili is used traditionally.
- 2 sprigs Curry leaves
- Crush all the ingredients given in the list in the same order. Blitz the yogurt well then add the crushed ingredients and water. Pour this into a larger container and pour it back .Repeat this pouring process a couple of times until everything is well combined. Either sieve the spices or leave it in the drink, to chew on the spice while drinking.Note : (The more time you let the spices sit in the yogurt the drink absorbs more heat and it gets spicier) Chill the yogurt drink until ready to be served.
- Pour into a serving glass holding the container slightly high so the drink froths well. Serve with just red chili slices and few curry leaves crushed on top as garnish.Traditionally sambharam is served at room temperature (not chilled) with the spices floating on top. It is served as a drink along with rice usually for lunch. You can pour this on rice and mix and have. Sambharam is also served as drink to guests only on hot and humid summer months.
- Do not grind all the ingredients as it will make the yogurt really spicy and alter the taste and color of the drink.
- Sambharam is best consumed fresh
- Can be made with a lot of variations (check above)
Do let me know if you try this recipe.