Takra, a lightly spiced yogurt drink, comes from the ancient Indian medical science of life known as Ayurveda, and is known for its digestive healing power.
When people approach me to learn how to experience more wellbeing in life, I always tell them it starts with food. When we eat a pure and wholesome diet, we can experience perfect digestion. Our mind, intellect, and ego are able to start to become purified, too. We begin to experience a calmer, clearer mind. And only with a calm, pure mind can we actually reach for spiritual freedom (moksha), which is the ultimate goal of the science of Ayurveda.
Dairy is thought to be responsible for a number of ailments, from digestive upsets to acne. Ayurveda, however, embraces certain dairy products and suggests that it’s not just what you are consuming but how you are consuming it that disturbs you. Even those who thought they were lactose intolerant (myself included) find that they can consume the dairy products Ayurveda recommends.
Regular yogurt is heavy and does not promote good digestion for most people, but when whisked with water and spices, it forms a delicious and healthy treat called takra. Takra is an incredible digestive antidote during colder seasons. While Ayurveda typically doesn’t recommend eating cold yogurt because its dense, cold qualities can clog your bodily channels, this version lightens the yogurt by whisking it with water, transforming it into a health-promoting food. It’s magical how a few small adjustments can make such a difference in a food’s healing potency. Takra benefits those suffering from piles, diabetes, abdominal tumors, diarrhea, many skin diseases, obesity, anemia, and more. Takra is particularly helpful anytime you experience loss of appetite. When combined with khichadi (a dish cooked with green and/or yellow mung dal lentils, white rice, and a variety of spices) in a mono diet, it can help those combating irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup organic whole cow’s milk plain yogurt, room temperature
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, roasted and ground into powder
- 2 ¼-inch pieces fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped Himalayan pink rock salt
- Boil water, then cool to room temperature. (Boiling the water makes it easier to digest.)
- Place the room-temperature yogurt in a small bowl and whisk for 2 minutes.
- Slowly add the water, cumin, ginger, cilantro, and rock salt to the yogurt. Continue whisking until takra is smooth and frothy, 1 to 2 minutes.
Note: Consume ideally before 3:00 p.m.; eat in moderation in the spring.
Text and recipe excerpted from The Ayurveda Way © Ananta Ripa Ajmera.