Sense of Home
Although I have made smoothies for years, the first time I ever tasted what is called a lassi was ten years ago at a Nepalese restaurant on State Street in Madison Wisconsin. I was taking a class at the University and eating my way through the numerous ethnic restaurants that State Street has to offer. The Nepalese restaurant was called Himal Chuli, which literally means "summit of the Himalayas", and if you use the Nepali root word "chulo" instead, the name becomes "kitchen of the Himalayas". When I asked the elderly woman at the cash register what the name meant she said "mountain kitchen". The lassi I had there was a delicious mango lassi. Two years ago I went back while on a motorcycle trip with my husband and some friends, it was as delicious as ever and the same elderly woman was at the register. Recently I have learned that a lassi is not always sweet, some are savory, as is this salted mint lassi, which is actually rather refreshing when ice cold (and I think it would be especially so on a hot day). You have to get the thought of a sweet drink out of your head though, once you adjust your thinking this is quite good, though I don't think I have convinced my husband.
Salted Mint Lassi
~Gourmet, October 2009~
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 cup mint leaves
4 cups plain Greek-style yogurt
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup water
Toast cumin in a dry small heavy skillet over medium heat, shaking skillet frequently, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer 1 1/2 teaspoon to a blender with mint, yogurt, kosher salt, and water.
Blend until pale green with flecks of mint and cumin. Serve lassi over ice and sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds.
Note: Lassi can be made 1 day ahead and chilled. Stir before serving.
Sense of Home / Recipes / Drinks
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