I first tried this delicious yogurt condiment at a The Tourist Guest House in Agra, India. I really didn’t know what I was ordering but I wasn’t disappointed as it went well with the chapatis I had ordered. Of course I would never order it again as a main dish but it goes really well with most Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi food and is a great and easy side dish to make for dipping or to cool down that burning Vindaloo!
So what is Raita? Well, it is yogurt dish seasoned with cucumber, mint and black pepper. You can spice it up a bit with roasted cumin and mustard seeds ground down but I don’t think it realyy needs the extra spice. It’s simple to make and worth the little effort but always eat freshly made!
Serves 4-6 as a side dish.
- Half a normal sized cucumber
- 275g natural yogurt
- 1/2 tspn caster sugar
- 1 tspn salt
- A small handful of chopped mint leaves
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tspn lime juice
Cut the cucumber lengthways and scoop out the seeds then grate into a bowl sprinkle with with the salt. Mix it up well and put it into a sieve and let it drain into the bowl for about half an hour.
Give it a good squeeze and then mix it into the yogurt with the chopped mint leaves season with the sugar, pepper lime juice and a bit of salt if needed.
Decorate with a sprig of mint or corriander leaves or even a decorative slice of cucumber and serve either as a side or makes a nice dip with papadums!