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Old 01-23-2006, 03:25 PM   #1
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Question Yakuta's Indian Yoghurt and Yogurt recipes

Got Yogurt?
Got Recipes?

Several of us have been amazed by Yakuta's teaching of how to make Yogurt at this Thread:


When the delicious looking Recipes started coming out, I took the liberty of starting this new Thread. Would anyone offer any good reasons to eat Yogurt and what are some neat uses for the stuff?

Right now, I eat it mixed with peaches for breakfast. I would be getting bored with it, except for Yakuta's Potato Salad I am going to try.

Thank you.

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Old 01-23-2006, 03:43 PM   #2
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Use it for making cooling raitas (such as yoghurt mixed with freshly chopped coriander, lime juice and cucumber, or mixed with banana and coconut, or spinach and slivered almonds) to accompany an Indian-curry or other dishes. You can then use these raitas as a sauce for burgers/sandwiches/couscous/kebabs etc etc.

Use it as a basis for dips such as tzatziki, or use it to replace ye olde mayonnaise in dips.

Use it in the actual cooking process such as the Indian biryani or any of a multitude of Lebanese and Middle Eastern dishes who definitely love their yoghurt.

Laban Ummo (Lamb Cooked in Yoghurt)
675g lamb, cubed
4 medium onions, chopped
2-4 garlic cloves
1 tsp allspice
300ml lamb or chicken stock
300ml plain yoghurt
15ml cornflour
fresh mint or coriander
plain rice to serve

Place the lamb, onion, garlic, allspice and stock in a casserole with a well fitting lid, bake in the oven at 180'C for 40 minutes.
Meanwhile stabilise the yoghurt by mixing with the cornflour. Heat this slowly until the sauce thickens, add a little salt.
Pour the yoghurt sauce over the lamb and return to the oven. Leave uncovered for a further 15 minutes until the lamb is tender. Garnish with fresh mint or coriander and serve with plain rice.
Serves 4-6.

Salatet Sabeneg-bil Leban (Spinach and Yoghurt Salad)
450g spinach
1 onion, chopped
1-2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
300ml plain yoghurt
mint, to garnish
Wash the spinach in plenty of water and remove the stalks. Drain the leaves well and then roughly chop them.
Lightly fry the onion and garlic in the oil until soft, add the spinach and cook until the spinach softens. ALlow this to cool.
Combine the spinach with the yoghurt, season and chill. Garnish with sprigs of mint.
Serves 4-6.
Variation: - Lightly toated crushed walnuts can be sprinkled on top of the salad.
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Old 01-23-2006, 07:26 PM   #3
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I've never eaten Lamb, but now I will be trying it.
What is a "cooling raitas" ?
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Old 01-24-2006, 08:35 AM   #4
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From what I understand, a "raita" is a dip/sauce condiment made from yogurt. It's used to help cleanse the palate and/or cool the burn of spicy foods (dairy is good for that).
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Old 01-24-2006, 10:13 AM   #5
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Here's a cucumber raita I make when I serve Indian dishes - but I've had fruit raitas at the homes of Indian friends.

Half a cucumber, chopped
Half an onion, peeled and chopped
handful of mint leaves, chopped
1 small tub Greek-style yoghurt
salt and freshly ground black pepper
squeeze of lemon juice

Put the cucumber, onion and mint leaves into a bowl. Add the Greek-style yoghurt, seasoning and lemon juice and mix together until combined.

Serve at once.
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Old 01-24-2006, 11:26 AM   #6
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Here are two more recipes:

Baingan Bharta (not the ones you get in Indian restaurants but a salad version. It is made with Eggplants and yogurt. It may seem like a weird combination but it really works).

Eggplant (one medium).
2 cups of plain yogurt
1 large bunch of green onions washed, roots discarded and finely chopped (white and green both)
1 small jalapeno chopped extra fine
1/2 cup of cilantro finely chopped
salt and black pepper to taste
1 tbsp of oil

Place the eggplant in a foil, rub the oil and cover it). Poke some holes in the foiled eggplant and place it in on a baking tray in the oven. Let it roast for an hour or so until the eggplant is tender. Once the eggplant cools, discard it's skin and a lot of the seeds.

It should be mushy but chop it roughly into a pulp consistency.

In a bowl, add the yogurt, cilantro, green onions, salt and black pepper. Now stir in the eggplant.

Traditionally we smoke this dish prior to serving. Smoking is done in Indian recipes not the traditional way as it is in the West. To smoke any dish here are the steps. Although it is optional we love the smell and unique flavor it adds to dishes.

1 peice of charcoal
Heat it on an open flame (gas)
Coal should be greyed on all sides (so really hot)

Now place a little peice of foil in the dish that needs to be smoked (we smoke meats too). Foil needs to be placed directly on the food. Place the hot coal, add a splash of oil or butter and cover the bowl immediately. Do not open it for 1/2 an hour or so. Now pick up the foil and discard the coal. A unique smoky flavor will be imparted to the food.

Next recipe is for tandoori chicken. While I have suggested chicken you can use fish as well (just marinate it for an hour in the marinade)

Chicken - 10 Legs and Thighs, Skinned, trimmed and reserved
2 tsp of grated ginger
2 tsp of roasted cumin powder
2 tsp of roasted corrainder powder
chilli powder to your liking
juice of 1 lime
3 cups of plain yogurt
pinch of red food color
handful of cilantro chopped
handful of mint chopped
salt to taste

In a bowl mix yogurt, ginger, chilli powder, cumin, corrainder powder, cilantro, salt, mint , food color and lime together. Pour it over the chicken and let it marinate overnight for best results.

You can grill this on a stove top of regular grill or can cook it in the oven. If you cook it in the oven a lot of liquid will release as the chicken cooks. Once the chicken is cooked remove it from the liquid. Strain the liquid and reduce it in a saucepan until it's nice and thick. Pour it over the chicken, garnish with some sweet onion slices and lime wedges and serve.

The yogurt reduction sauce is healthy and full of flavor.

We use yogurt in curries too and a lot of yogurt is used in the traditional biryani preparation we make and Haggis who shared wonderful recipes indicated that. Biryani for most Indians is similar to a Paella for the folks from Spain. It is one of the richest dishes we make in Indian cuisine. Its some effort but the end outcome is every bit worth it. If you are into giving it a try I will be more than happy to share a recipe that we have used as a hand me down for generations.
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Old 01-24-2006, 11:36 AM   #7
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Aaah, these recipes are awesome! And that smoking method... never heard of such a thing. Do you need to allow some air to the food or cover the whole area with foil?
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:00 PM   #8
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For smoking to be effective you have to cover the pan tightly after you place the hot coal and pour a little bit of oil over it. The smoke from the coal gives the food a very unique flavor that I cannot describe. If you leave it open the smoke will escape and there will be no smokiness imparted to the food.

People who follow Indian food closely know about this smoking method. We also smoke raw marinated meat and then cook it. It is a specialty of the Moghulai cuisine which was influenced by the Moghuls (Muslim Kings) who ruled India decades ago.

Again this is an optional step so if you are concerned about using coal or skeptical in any way you can skip it. Since this is the way I make them at home I wanted to share that little tidbit.
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Old 01-24-2006, 04:22 PM   #9
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I've never eaten Lamb, but now I will be trying it.
What is a "cooling raitas" ?
AllenMI is right on with his explanation of a raita. And by "cooling raita" I meant that the fact that a yoghurt raita can help put out the fire present within some Indian dishes (especially when combined with cucumber and fresh green herbs (mint and coriander especially) as Ishbel shows. Try banana and coconut as well, its delicious.

Also serve the raita nice and cold, helps create a contrast not only by tempering the chilli but also acting as the counterpoint to a generally high-temperature curry dish.
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Old 01-25-2006, 04:29 AM   #10
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I cook with Yogurt as well quite a lot. Sometimes instead of using sour cream in some recipes, I use yogurt. Thanks Yakuta for the yogurt recipe, from now on I will make my own.
Here is a chicken and yogurt recipe that goes down very well here.
3 cups Yogurt
6 tablespoons dijon mustard
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 teaspoons ground ginger
pepper, to taste
6 chicken thighs

Mix together the yogurt, mustard, garlic, ginger, and pepper. Spread the mixture on the chicken, rubbing it in. Place in a baking dish, cover, and let marinate for at least 2 hours.
Bake the chicken, uncovered, for 1 hour or until it is brown.
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