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March 19, 2012

Neeragaram / Pazhayadhu / நீராகாரம்/summer cooler & energy drink

Summer is down so as usual I started our 'Neeragaram' or Pazhayadhu for breaking the fast in the morning.

Our farmers from southern regions and many villagers have this diet in the morning which keep them healthy, fit and energized for the whole day. It is a lovely sight to seem them having a plate of pazhayadhu (leftover soaked rice) biting the onion & green chillies as side dish. 

The purest form is without butter milk. But to enhance the taste, we can add the buttermilk. 

This is an excellent source of hydration and electrolytes.

The rice that is cooked using draining method by draining the excess water after cooking, is the best one for making this dish rather than a rice cooked in a pressure cooker or rice cooker. If it is a rice with bran (brown rice) then it adds more nutritional value. The rice for this dish must be the one that was cooked either in the morning or in the afternoon. 

The left over rice of the rice at night is immersed in water overnight at room temperature. Fermentation takes place during this time thus it makes the rice rich in micro-nutrients.

As years went by, most of our traditional food and practises has gone out of practice. This food was one them and  looked at as a poor man's food and thus ignoring its nutritional value.

I have given some benefits below. You may google for knowing more benefits this drink.

Ingridients :

  1. cooked Rice - 2 cups
  2. Water - as required to cover the rice completely
  3. Small Onion - 10 nos.
  4. Salt to taste
  5. Buttermilk - 1 cup
Curry leaves, Green chilli - Optional (use as a variation for a change in flavour)

Procedure :

  • Previous night soak the rice and leave it stand till next day morning
  • Next day, drain the water (this water never discard as we are going to mix it back with rice in the process), mash the rice
  • finely chop small onions, curry leaves, green chilli and add it to the mashed rice
  • Now add the water that is drained (in which rice is soaked) to it and also a cup of buttermilk.
  • season it with salt, mix well
  • now the Healthy breakfast is ready to keep you energetic on a hot summer day

Please go through the attached image (published in a magazine) for knowing its health benefits better. I am giving a translation of the same below this picture :-

 If you find the letters in the picture very small, press 'ctrl' button and simultaneously move the scroll button in your mouse upwards, this will enlarge the screen. To resize the scree again, press 'ctrl' and move the scroll button in mouse downwards.


  1. Grest source of vitamin B12 and B6, 
  2. It has trillions of good bacteria which keeps your digestive system especially the small intestine clean and healthy
  3. The small onions / shallots used increase immunity power
  4. It prevents ulcer, cools down the body, Healthy & light diet
  5. Keep you energized throughout the day
  6. without buttermilk it can cure ulcer as both onion as well as the soaked rice & water acts as cooling agent
  7. Even for chicken pox, a cloth is dipped in this water and kept over the eyes to cool them.

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