Most loved delicious Indian summer chiller

My cousin visited us last week carrying a ‘stainless steel sombu’ (a utensil used for storing water. It is made up of mud/brass/aluminum or even stainless steel).

Indian Summer Chiller

 I wondered what was in it as my cousin placed the sombu respectfully in front of our family deity. It did not take me long to guess what it was. It was my favourite childhood summer thirst quencher humbly called as Panagam (in Tamil) or Panakam(in Telegu) or Panaka (in Hindi). Panagam is a simple drink made with sugarcane Jaggery and is usually an offering made to Lord Rama during the festival of Rama navami.

“Jaggery is a traditional unrefined non-centrifugal whole cane sugar. It is a concentrated product of cane juice without separation of the molasses and crystals, and can vary from golden brown to dark brown in color.It contains up to50% sucrose,up to 20% invert sugars, moisture content of up to 20%, and the remainder made up of other insoluble matter such as wood ash, proteins and bagasse fibers.” (Source:

To know more about jaggery and its different uses, please see

Where to buy Jaggery?

Cane sugar Jaggery is available in most of the Indian grocery shops.

Why Panagam is a healthy summer chiller drink?

Panagam doesn’t take long to prepare and it is the most delicious drink that is healthy and satisfying.  Panagam is made with cane Jaggery which is derived from unrefined whole sugar, and is prepared combining the Jaggery with filtered water and a hint of lemon juice, black pepper and cardamom powder.

Why Jaggery is healthy?

  • Jaggery is prepared without the use of chemicals in its processing.
  • Jaggery is a more complex form of carbohydrate than plain sugar. So, it is digested and absorbed gradually and releases energy gradually. This provides warmth and energy for a longer period.
  • Jaggery contains naturally occurring important minerals like sodium, magnesium which strengthens our nervous system and helps to relax our muscles.
  • Jaggery with selenium acts as an antioxidant. The potassium and sodium present in it maintain the acid balance in the body cells and control the blood pressure in the body.
  • It consists of moderate amount of calcium, phosphorous and zinc and therefore helps to purify the blood, prevent rheumatic afflictions and treat bile disorder.
  •  Jaggery is rich in iron. It helps to prevent anemia.
  • It provides relief to a person suffering from asthma because it has anti- allergy properties.
  • Relieves period cramps: It is good for girls to ease the cramps during their period.
  • Jaggery mixed with water is known to provide relaxation to the muscles, nerve and help in getting rid of fatigue.
  •  It helps to reduce the water retention in the body and eventually helps in controlling the body weight.


How to make Panagam


Indian Summer Chiller

Chop the jaggery into small pieces


Indian Summer Chiller

Ingredients required for making Panagam

  • Jaggery  – 1/2 cup
  • Filtered water – 3 cups
  • Juice of half a lemon/lime
  • Black pepper powder – Half a teaspoon
  • Cardamom powder – Half a teaspoon

Preparation method:

  1. Add cane sugar jaggery to the water and stir well till the jaggery dissolves.
  2. To it, add the juice of half a lemon or lime,  black pepper powder and cardamom powder. Mix well.
  3. Strain the juice with a strainer to remove any natural impurities like sand present in the jaggery.
  4. Garnish Panagam with Indian holy basil.
Indian Summer Chiller

Serve it as it is or chilled.

NOTE: You can adjust the amount of jaggery  according to the sweetness required in the drink.

Adding lemon juice with hint of black pepper and holy basil will create a zing in your drink. It is healthy too!

Enjoy this simple yet very delicious Indian summer chiller.

Bye for now. With Love from PetalDewNature’s Nurture


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