As a Gujarati, we have kadhee once a week. It is sweet, sour and spicy. Once home made yogurt a.k.a. dahi, is a day old and sour, we use it to make this delicious soup. It is made many different ways in the different regions of India.
My mom always said “the key to a good yogurt soup is the gram flour.” For some reason, her yogurt soup tasted the best but it curdled and would blame it on the gram flour a.k.a. besan.
I eat khichdee with kadhee. Sometimes, I drink it by itself too.
DH does not drink or eat it. DD, not yet.
So what’s all the fuss with this soup?
In cold weather, it is hard to eat cold yogurt and so you cook the yogurt and have it warmed it up.
Gujaratis add jaggery a.k.a. molasses to all their food to have a perfect balance of sweet, sour and spicy flavors. So the kadhee follows the same rule. The other unique feature of Gujarati kadhee is that it is made from buttermilk, which makes it more watery and soup like in consistency.
Home made yogurt:
Mom has been making yogurt for the last 50 years. Dad needs fresh yogurt everyday. Mom boils the milk, lets it cool down and then adds the starter yogurt from yesterday’s yogurt, it ferments overnight and is ready for the use the next day.
Benefits of home made yogurt:
- Fermented and so has probiotics, which promote healthy gut flora.
- All the nutrients present in milk also occur in yogurt: Calcium, vitamins A, Vitamin B, phosphorus and potassium. Milk from grass fed cows has high amounts of CLA [conjugated linoleum acid].
Why not commercial yogurt?
- Commercial yogurt is fermented for a short time, sometimes just an hour! so the benefits in terms of
- easily accessible nutrients is lost.
- it is not as easy to digest since, not much time for breakdown of lactose and casein.
- probiotic bacteria is not in sufficient strength to impact gut flora
- Commercial yogurt may have many additional ingredients which may not be healthy eg sugar, pectin and others.
I make yogurt in the instant pot. I use non homogenized, organic, grass- fed milk. I boil it, then let it cool and then add the culture, usually store bought organic plain yogurt and then put it in the instant pot: yogurt function for 8 hours. Once it is formed, I let it sit on the kitchen counter for another 4-6 hours to sour it a little. It is more watery than store bought yogurt, I like it that way. You can strain the whey out, mind you, it is sweet whey and has a high protein content and high bacteria count as well. So use it, do not throw it away. Commercial whey protein is made from that fluid.
For 3.5 cups of milk, I use 2 tablespoons of starter culture yogurt.
Once you have your yogurt, home made or store bought, mix 1 cup yogurt with 2 cups of water with 1/4 cup of gram flour. Add salt and jaggery to taste. Heat till it boils once then lower the heat so it is simmering. Add tadka. And it is ready to serve with cilantro garnish.
Tadka: Heat 1 tablespoon ghee, you can use coconut oil or any other oil except olive oil for this, add a pinch of cumin seeds once ghee is hot, wait till they crackle, add a pinch of turmeric powder, add 6-8 curry leaves, add grated ginger: 1/2 inch piece and then add to the yogurt mixture. Some folks add cloves, cinnamon stick, dried red chili to make it spicy.
Curry leaves a.k.a. kadi patta has many benefits. Check here for more information.
DD helps me with making buttermilk. She has yet to develop a taste for this. I can’t wait for my parents to come in summer and introduce her to this amazing soup.
Do you have any favorite winter soup recipes you would like to share?
Do you make yogurt soup a different way? If so, please share.