Cucumber raita is the perfect way to cool down the heat that comes from Indian/Pakistani dishes. It's the clever combination of cucumber and yoghurt mixed with herbs and spices that makes this condiment so cooling. Raita teamed with flat bread is a great idea for lunch on a hot day.
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 1 Bowl
Chilli powder or small chilli (optional)
Half a cucumber is used
Peel the cucumber.
Using a chopping board, cut the cucumber into small pieces. Another option for preparing the cucumber is to grate it using the coarsest side of the grater.
Place the cucumber onto a paper towel. Using another paper towel blot off some of the excess water from the cucumber. This will stop the raita from going watery. If you opt for the grating method, you'll find that the cumber will initially be much more watery. Using a sieve the grated cucumber can be gently squeezed to drain off some of the water.
Finely chop a few sprigs of mint and coriander. A few whole leaves can be saved for the garnish.
Crush the cumin seeds using a pestle and mortar. A generous pinch of cumin seeds will be enough.
Add all the above prepared ingredients to a small mixing bowl.
Add 6 tbsp of yoghurt.
Just a pinch of chilli powder and salt is added for flavour.
Mix the ingredients together, at this point you can taste a bit to check the seasoning is right. You might decide to add a bit more yoghurt, the quantities can be adjusted to suit personal preference.
Place in the serving bowl. Garnish with the mint and coriander leaves and add a few whole cumin seeds. Serve and enjoy.
Use the following steps for preparing fresh chilli.
Cut the chilli in half and remove the seeds.
Use a small mild chilli. If it is hot then only use half of it.
The seeds can be carefully scraped out with a knife.
Add the chilli to a food chopper with 1tbsp of yoghurt. With this method the cumin seeds can be added to the chopper instead of the pestle and mortar. Chop to make a paste. The remaining steps for making the raita are the same as above.
Suggestion: Why not try cucumber raita with pilau rice.