Thailand is known for its tropical climate and with the spicy food it offers, it’s quite impossible not to have a chilled drink aside to soothe your taste buds. With so many flavours and variations you will be spoilt for choice to enjoy these drinks.
Imagine if you had a fiery Pad Thai or exotic basil fried rice or even a spicy sausage with a chilled drink! The very thought is refreshing. These refreshing Thai drinks also have cooling and medicinal properties that are beneficial to your health.
The following are Thailand’s top 5 refreshing drinks.
Bael fruit juice
Bael fruit or wood apple is used extensively in Thailand to make juice and tea. The pulp of the fruit is extracted and ground along with sugar and water which is strained for a pure and clear juice.It is known to have been an excellent blood cleanser and is extremely beneficial for relief from constipation, indigestion, peptic ulcer, piles, respiratory problems, diarrhea. Bael fruits are available in most of the Asian markets.
Ya Dong ( herb infused drink)
If you were to visit the local streets of Bangkok, you will find many shops lined with cookie jars containing a concoction of liquids. These are known as Ya Dong or herb infused drinks. Ya dong is made from a number of health enhancing herbs like ginseng, plao-noi, Ebony and other herbs mixed with local Lao Khao (white spirit). It is known to have been a blood cleansing tonic and served with salt, chilli, sugar dip (prikglua) and also with unripe mango.
If you want some tangy-tart-sweet and salty notes of flavour in your drink, then Tamarind drink is a must-have in Thailand. Just like lemonade, the tamarind juice is extracted from the pulp and mixed with salt, sugar and water. If you want a healthy alternative you can use palm sugar.Its sweet and sour taste makes it supremely refreshing. Tamarind is known to have been beneficial in aiding digestion and also cure constipation.
A bright and intense yellow beverage is made by soaking the dried flowers of chrysanthemum in water and is a commonly served tea in Asia.The longer the flowers are steeped, the brighter the color and more intense the floral flavour. It is mixed with sugar and served over crushed ice. Chrysanthemum flowers are said to have natural cooling properties and is a popular drink in Thailand. You can find the dried flowers in China town in Bangkok which also has a good selection of blended Chrysanthemum teas.
Nam Manglak (Thai Basil Seed Drink)
The aroma of Thai basil is enough to soothe your senses. Nam manglak or Thai basil drink is made from sweet basil seeds and mixed with sugar or honey and ice.On a hot day this drink is sure to leave you completely refreshed and re-energized. Make sure you pick sweet basil seeds and not the hot ones. Basil is known to have cooling properties and also boost the immune system and cure indigestion. This drink is usually mixed with rose water as well to bring out a distinct flavour.
Other refreshing Thai drinks include coconut juice, coconut smoothie, Bai Bua Bok (green herb tea), Sato (Isaan Rice Wine)and Cha KaJeape (Hibiscus Tea).
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