Friday, October 17, 2008

1001 Exotic Lassis

Every cuisine evolves from locally available stuff. When a cuisine absorbs different ingredients and different cooking techniques from other cultures, it gets enriched.
This assimilation has never before been easier. We now have access to a large variety of ingredients and cooking techniques and so can create a huge array of traditional recipes, made from exotic ingredients. Eating food from other culturesis probably the easiest way to understand and appreciate them.

Indian cuisine discovered that when fermented milk, the yogurt, is blended with sugar, it makes a delicious drink, the lassi.  Seems simple, but not many cuisines across the world whip up so many varieties of fermented milk drinks. Other cuisines, however have a large array of fermented milk products. We can borrow their ingredients and lend them our technique, thus unshackling lassi from yogurt and let it be made from fermented milk across the world.

Though Indian lassis are made from cow / buffalo milk, lassis can be made from any fermented milk. Each culture has its own way of fermenting milk and almost all of them can be turned into delicious lassis. Using the Indian technique of blending fermented milk with a variety of flavourings and additives, a large variety of global lassis can be created.

The base of all lassis is fermented milk. This is blended with a variety of flavourings as listed in column 2 and additives listed in column 3 to give a thousand different exotic lassis

 The bases are listed below :

Kefir, from Caucasus, is milk ( usually from goat / camel)  fermented with Kefir grains into a thin yogurt.

Viili is a Finnish version of yogurt made by curdling milk with special bacteria. Like Indian yogurt, previously made Viili is used as a starter for the next batch. 

Kaymak, from Turkey is fermented milk made by boiling milk and then slowly simmering it for hours over gentle heat. The cream is then skimmed and fermented into mild, rich paste.

The central Asian Kumis is fermented mare's milk. Commercial Kumis uses cow's milk, mixed in with various additives, to make it similar to mare's milk.

Filmjölk, from Sweden is milk fermented by bacteria into a less sour version of normal yogurt.

The South African Amasi is made by fermenting unpasteurised cow's milk in a container made from calabash / hide sack.

Doogh , from Iran is very similar to carbonated buttermilk. Yogurt is beaten well, mixed with water and fermented so that the drink becomes fizzy. A shortcut is to mix in soda with yogurt.

The viscous Matsoni is Georgian version of yogurt.

No comments:

Food Consultancy / Licensing / Crash Courses

Contact for complete Food consultancy from concept to completion.

Customised one page cookbooks now available for pressure cooker / microwave / mixie / masala & other cooking product manufacturers. Replace bulky recipe books with easy to refer One page cookbooks and watch your sales soar !


Blog Archive

Cooking is fun - Duplication is a pain !

"It is extraordinary to me that the idea of creating thousands of recipes by mixing building blocks takes immediately to people or it doesn’t take at all. .... If it doesn’t grab a person right away, ... you can talk to him for years and show him demos, and it doesn’t make any difference. They just don’t seem able to grasp the concept, simple as it is". ( Thanks Warren Buffett !)

"What's angering about instructions in many cookbooks is that they imply there's only one way to cook a dish - their way. And that presumption wipes out all the creativity." Cook dishes your way - Download  1001 South Indian curries now and learn to cook, not to duplicate ! ( Thanks Robert Pirsig !)

"Recipe purity is no different from racial purity or linguistic purity. It just does not exist. Cuisines are alive and change all the time. What is traditional today was esoteric just a few decades back. So being a 'foodist' is as bad as being a racist !

About Me

My photo
Chennai, Tamilnadu, India
Okay, let me start from the very beginning. 1500 crore years ago, with a Big Bang, the Universe is born. It expands dramatically. Hydrogen forms, contracts under gravity and lights up, forming stars. Some stars explode, dusting space with the building blocks of life. These condense into planets, one of which is Earth. Over time, self replicating molecules appear, multiply and become more complex. They create elaborate survival machines (cells, plants, animals). A variety of lifeforms evolve. Soon, humans arise, discover fire, invent language, agriculture and religion. Civilisations rise and fall. Alexander marches into India. Moguls establish an empire. Britain follows. Independence. Partition. Bloodshed. The license raj is in full sway. I'm born. India struggles to find its place. Liberalisation. The Internet arrives! I move from Tirupur to Chennai. Start a company. Expand into Malaysia, Singapore and the Middle East. Poof! Dot com bust. Funding dries up. Struggle. Retire. Discover the joy of cooking, giving, friendships and the pleasures of a simple life. Life seems less complicated. Pizza Republic, Pita Bite and Bhojan Express bloom !

Looking for Treatment?