It’s funny how our childhood dislikes can be rediscovered when we are adults. Past miseries become today’s treats. Spinach, all kinds of cheese, oatmeal, I could go on and I know I’m not the only one. On my list, you can find as well homemade yogurt.
It’s really easy to prepare.
Heat ½ liter of milk to a temperature of about 50 degrees C, add a cup of store-bought natural yogurt.
Wrap the pot with a blanket to keep it warm and set it aside for several hours. It is important that the room in which it’s in is warm enough.
Of course, you can add all kinds of sweetmeats or nuts to warm milk with yogurt. But if we prepare yogurt without additions, we will get a base for lassi, a refreshing yogurt drink, in ayurvedic cuisine served at the end of the meal to improve digestion.
The base for lassi is just natural yogurt or buttermilk mixed with water in a 1: 3 ratio. When the weather does not spoil us, the water should be warm, so as not to cool the body. Lassi can be prepared sweet, savory, or spicy.
Initially, I took recipes for lassi from the books Ayurvedic Cooking for Self Healing by Usha Lad and Vasant Lad and Ayurvedic Beauty Care: Ageless Techniques to Invoke Natural Beauty by Melanie Sachs. Now I often add spices to the yogurt base following my stomach suggestions.
I will cite here 2 recipes from the above-mentioned books, which I have tried and proved to be great. I hope that they will inspire you to experiment on your own.
Salty lassi by Melanie Sachs:
„(…) yogurt mixed in a 1: 3 ratio with water with the addition of lemon juice, a pinch of salt, a slice of fresh ginger, powdered cumin and coriander” (Sachs, 2016, p. 58)
Sweet lassi by Usha Lad and Vasant Lad is created by adding a little sugar and rose water to the yogurt base.
Although the ingredients of lassi can be easily mixed with a spoon, the authors recommend mixing the ingredients in a blender for a minute or two. Mixing yogurt stimulates agni, the digestive fire. (cf. U. Lad, V. Lad, 2015, p. 174)
Recently, I prepared a spicy version of lassi, adding a few drops of lemon juice to yogurt and water, 1/4 teaspoon dried ginger, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, a pinch of black pepper, cayenne pepper, and a pinch of salt.