We discovered the Uzhavar Santhai, a permanent farmers market on Cowley Brown Road, near R S Puram. The vegetables and fruits are fresh and the farmers themselves come and sell at this market. We have made it a part of our morning walk most of the days. Besides buying vegetables fresh everyday, the other big attraction for us is the Neera drink !
As soon as you enter the Uzhavar Sandhai, on your left is a small pushcart that sells this drink. It’s chilled and truly feels like you are drinking nectar.
Benefits of the Palm Nectar
There are two flex charts that explain the benefits of this drink in Tamil and in English. Posting it here –
What is Neera ?
It’s palm nectar extracted from the Coconut tree. Most of us are familiar with Toddy, which is what Neera becomes when fermented :). To avoid fermentation, the extraction is done before sunrise.
“…Neera is rich in sugar, essential elements such as N, P, K, Mg, micronutrients, minerals and a good source of ascorbic acid. It contains acids nicotinic acid (Vit B3) and riboflavin (Vit B2) and also can be consumed by people suffering from diabetes since it has a low glycemic index and a low glycemic load (Hebbar). Coconut sugar is a byproduct of Neera…” Read the full article – Neera – A Potential Natural Health Drink.
Many people in TamilNadu will be familiar with the term “Padaneer” which is process Neera and leaves a little bitter aftertaste. Apparently slaked lime is used to avoid fermentation of the palm sap.
This elixir is a pale liquid and very sweet to drink.
This drink is soon becoming an important reason why am liking Coimbatore more and more !! :).
It’s available in Maharashtra and Goa besides the four southern states, so stop and enjoy this amazing drink. Apparently it has connections to our Swadeshi movement !