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Raita Recipes

Indian salads are a great accompaniment to any Indian meal. They are healthy, delicious and easy to prepare. In North India, salads are known as raitas (pronounced “rye-ta“), and are usually always yogurt based. Raitas have a wonderful cooling effect on the palate which makes them the perfect compliment for any spicy meal. In other regions of India, salads are known as koshimbir, kachumber or pachadi. These types of salads may or may not contain yogurt. There are many different varieties of raitas and koshimbirs, these are a few of my favorites. Feel free to use a food processor to speed along the grating process!


CUCUMBER MINT RAITA

Ingredients:

1 large English cucumber, peeled and coarsely grated
½ cup (packed) fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
2 cups good quality plain yogurt
salt to taste
¼ tsp ground cumin powder
pinch of red chili powder, to taste

METHOD:

Using kitchen towel or fine cheesecloth, wrap the grated cucumber and squeeze out any excess liquid. Leave open to air dry until needed.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt and spices (salt, ground cumin and red chili powder). Add the grated cucumbers and chopped mint leaves. Mix well to combine, refrigerate and serve chilled with any Indian meal.


VARIATIONS:

Try this recipe using cilantro leaves or add some chopped tomatoes. You could also make a Tomato and Onion Raita by using thinly sliced red onion and some chopped tomatoes. Use finely chopped baby spinach leaves for a Spinach Raita.

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CARROT & TOMATO KOSHIMBIR

Ingredients:

2 large carrots, peeled and finely grated
2 small Roma tomatoes, finely diced
2-3 small Thai green chilies split lengthwise
2 tbsp of unsalted and roasted peanuts, crushed
juice of 1 lime
salt to taste
pinch of sugar
2 tbsp oil (vegetable of canola)
¼ tsp black mustard seeds
¼ tsp cumin seeds
4-5 fresh curry leaves
pinch of asafetida (hing)
freshly chopped cilantro leaves for garnish

METHOD:

In a large mixing bowl, combine the lime juice, sugar, salt and green chilies. Whisk to blend and dissolve the sugar and salt in the lime juice. Add the grated carrots and chopped tomatoes.

In a small pan, heat the oil on medium high. When hot, carefully add the mustard seeds. When the splattering subsides, add the cumin seeds, curry leaves and asafetida. Pour this oil mixture over the grated carrots and tomatoes. Add the crushed peanuts and chopped cilantro leaves. Serve with any Indian meal.

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RED RADISH KOSHIMBIR (Moolyachi Koshimbir)

Ingredients:

1 bunch of red radishes (24-25), grated
1 cup good quality plain yogurt
salt to taste
1-2 tbsp of oil (vegetable or canola)
½ tsp of black mustard seeds
2-3 small Thai green chilies split lengthwise
3-4 fresh curry leaves
freshly chopped cilantro leaves

METHOD:

Using a kitchen towel or fine cheesecloth, wrap the grated radishes and squeeze out any excess liquid. Leave open to air dry until needed.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt and salt. Add the grated red radishes. Mix well to combine.

In a small pan, heat the oil on medium high. When hot, carefully add the mustard seeds. When the splattering subsides, add the green chilies and curry leaves. Remove from the heat and let cool before pouring over the grated red radishes. Add the chopped cilantro leaves. Mix well to combine, refrigerate and serve chilled with any Indian meal.


VARIATIONS:

Try this recipe using beetroots; boil the beetroots until just tender, then peel, finely chop and use as directed in the recipe above.

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PINEAPPLE RAITA

Ingredients:

3 cups of fresh pineapple, small dice (or you can use one 8 oz can, drain well)
½ cup of freshly grated coconut
1 cup of good quality plain yogurt
1 tsp chaat masala (or you can use garam masala)
¼ tsp red chili powder to taste
salt and pepper to taste
freshly chopped cilantro leaves for garnish

METHOD:

In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the ingredients. Mix gently to combine, cover and refrigerate. Serve with any Indian meal.


VARIATIONS:

Try this recipe using fresh ripe mangoes or papaya. You can also combine fruits to make a delicious Mixed Fruits Raita.

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Content copyright © 2013 by Sadhana Ginde. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Sadhana Ginde. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Sadhana Ginde for details.



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