As I write this, I have been awake for a couple of hours, jolted out of my sleep by thunder, lightning and the sound of heavy rain. My sleep-addled brain thought I was back in Bombay for a few minutes.
My surroundings assured me that was not the case. It’s just a facet of the crazy Scandinavian weather. Sunny one minute, downpours the next! Well, we get to see some lovely rainbows as a result, so it’s not all bad
Last weekend was a different story. It was hot! 28 degrees and full sunshine. And if you have been to Scandinavia, you know the sunshine lasts till well after 10 pm during summer, so it is absolutely wonderful.
You feel full of energy, everyone is outside, running, playing, having fun and your body refuses to go to sleep, wanting to enjoy every minute while the sun is shining…And when the temperature rises, I like to make all the awesome, cooling food and drinks we made to survive the Indian summer, back in Bombay.
Such as this crazy-delicious drink/ mini-meal in a glass known as ‘Falooda’. Say it loud ‘Fa-loo-dah’!! 😀
Falooda is made by flavoring milk with a syrup, originally rose syrup, but now falooda is available in many flavors. This flavored milk is poured into a tall glass to which fruit pieces, dry fruits, jelly, cooked vermicelli, and soaked basil seeds are added.
Oh, and its all topped with dollops of ice-cream! And more syrup! Slurrrrrrp!!
Since I can’t find rose syrup here in Denmark (and I have secretly wondered what goes into the many-hued syrups we find in India!) I decided to make my own strawberry syrup that would go into a refreshing Strawberry falooda.
This syrup is a really simple concoction, made by cooking strawberries with water and sugar. It is delicious over fruit salads or ice cream or in strawberry milk.
No preservatives, no junk, no artificial colors or additives. Just pure strawberry flavor…
And of course, you can use it to make this divine falooda.
The basil seeds (also called Sabja) in the falooda are very nutritious and help your body to cool down. They have an interesting gooey texture and are a trademark of the traditional falooda.
It is a really filling drink and I have survived hot summer days in Bombay with only Falooda for lunch. Healthy, fruity and cooling, it provides a perfect boost of energy in warm weather.
I am bringing this awesome drink to Angie’s Friday Fiesta! It is being hosted by 2 wonderful super bloggers today: Elaine@Foodbod and Julianna@ Foodie On Board. It’s gonna be a quite a ride, so come along 😀
Here’s the recipe.
Strawberry Falooda with Homemade Strawberry Syrup
For the Strawberry Syrup
2 cups Fresh Strawberries, chopped
½ cup granulated Sugar
½ cup Water
Add strawberries, granulated sugar, and water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat.
Reduce heat and allow to simmer about 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and pour into jar of a blender.
Blend on high speed for 10 seconds or until smooth.
Cool and store in the refrigerator in a jar with a tight fitting lid.
Keeps in the refrigerator for about a week.
For the Falooda
6 tablespoons Strawberry Syrup
4 teaspoons Sabja seeds (Basil seeds)
1 packet Falooda Vermicelli (or 50 grams regular vermicelli)
1/2 cup Milk
2 teaspoons Sugar
1/2 cup chopped Strawberries
4 cups cold Milk
Strawberry Ice-cream to serve
Soak the sabja seeds in about 1 cup water for 15 minutes. They will swell up and look glutinous and translucent. Drain and keep aside.
In a pan, heat the 1/2 cup milk and add sugar. Heat till sugar dissolves. Then add the vermicelli. Cook till the vermicelli is soft and has soaked up most of the milk. Keep aside to cool.
To assemble, pour 1½ tablespoons of strawberry syrup each into 2 tall glasses, top with the soaked sabja seeds, the cooked vermicelli and the chopped strawberries.
Pour 1 cup of cold milk into each glass gently so that the milk does not mix with the syrup.
Top each glass with a scoop of strawberry ice-cream, garnish with some more strawberry syrup.
Serve immediately with a straw and a long latte spoon.