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27 February 2019

Traditional Raita is an Indian condiment made with yogurt, fresh vegetables and spices. It is served as a side and relished for its cooling effect when eating spicy foods. My recipe includes cucumbers, serrano peppers and mint.

We’ve been enjoying a lot of curry recipes in the Chili Pepper Madness household lately. It is something we’ve really grown into over the years. See my awesome Curry Recipes here.

Patty was never a big curry fan in  her youth, and I simply wasn’t exposed to it growing up in the secluded Midwest.

After we married, we began to explore and quickly found a love for all things curry. If you’re a spicy food lover like I am, I’m sure curry is on your menu quite frequently.

As with any curry, though, it can get pretty spicy. Right? Have you ever tasted a curry that was just TOO HOT?

Enter “Raita”.

Indian Raita in a bowl, ready to eat

What is Raita?

Raita is a traditional condiment of India that helps cool your palate. It is made with fresh yogurt, fresh vegetables and spices. There are variations, of course, from region to region.

It is somewhat similar to a Greek tzatziki sauce, which is made mostly of Greek yogurt and cucumbers.

Raita Variations

Some raita recipes include cooked vegetables. Some include fruit. Some even include bits of fried dough, though my recipe goes with only fresh ingredients.

Raita can be made savory or sweet, and it can be made mild or spicy. Even though it is meant to have a cooling effect on the palate, I like a spicier version.

Typical Raita Ingredients

The main ingredient in raita is yogurt. You want to use fresh plain yogurt, not Greek yogurt.

Why?

Because Greek yogurt is a bit too watery. This affects the consistency of the final condiment.

Popular add ins include chopped cucumber, chopped peppers (use a variety), tomato, and onions.

Some cooked vegetables might be boiled potatoes, steamed cauliflower or broccoli, cabbage or even cooked corn.

A good ratio is 2:1 of yogurt to vegetables and/or fruits.

Popular Raita Herbs and Spices

Once you’ve selected your vegetables, next come the spices and herbs. Popular choices here are spicy chili powder, toasted cumin, chaat masala, coriander or cilantro, and mint.

I like a big variety, but the the recipe I am sharing is my favorite version. I will vary it up from time to time, though. It depends sometimes on what I have on hand.

Let’s talk about how we make it, shall we?

How to Make Raita – the Recipe Method

First, gather up your ingredients, which includes the following:

  • 2 cups plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 serrano peppers, finely chopped
  • ½ small cucumber, finely chopped (about ¾ cup)
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro (loosely packed)
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint

Cucumbers and serrano peppers

Next, whisk the cayenne, cumin and salt into the yogurt until well incorporated.

Give your fresh veggies a good chop. I like to slice them small for easy eating, but not too small. Like so.

Diced cucumbers and serrano peppers

Stir in the remaining ingredients.

Mixing our Raita in a bowl

Refrigerate at least 1 hour to let the flavors mingle.

When ready to use, give it a quick stir and serve.

BOOM! Easy, right? Done in about 10 minutes or so. Just set it out among your other side dishes.

Indian Raita in a bowl, ready to serve

Recipe Notes

For my recipe, cucumbers and serrano peppers are KEY. And mint. They’re nice and cooling overall, but the serranos still give a bit of that spiciness and heat that I always crave.

Great to serve with curries or other spicy Indian dishes to combat the high heat factor, like Vindaloo. Serve it up with naan or some type of flat bread.

I hope you enjoy it, my friends! I figured I needed to share this with you, as we’ve been making so many curries lately. I hope it helps you beat the spicy curry heat!

Check Out Some of My Popular Curry Recipes

Indian Raita in a bowl, garnished with cucumbers and serrano slices

Got any questions? Ask away! I’m happy to help. If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you’ll leave a comment with some STARS.

Also, please share it on social media. Don’t forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I’ll be sure to share! Thanks! — Mike H.

5 from 1 vote
Indian Raita Recipe (Traditional Indian Condiment)
Indian Raita – Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 min
Total Time
11 mins
 
Traditional Indian Raita is a cooling condiment made with yogurt, fresh vegetables and spices. My recipe includes cucumbers, serrano peppers and mint.
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: condiment, recipe, spicy, yogurt
Servings: 6
Calories: 59 kcal
Author: Mike Hultquist
Ingredients
  • 2 cups plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 serrano peppers finely chopped
  • ½ small cucumber finely chopped (about ¾ cup)
  • 1 small shallot finely chopped
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro loosely packed
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint
Instructions
  1. Whisk the cayenne, cumin and salt into the yogurt until well incorporated.
  2. Stir in the remaining ingredients.
  3. Refrigerate at least 1 hour to let the flavors mingle.
  4. When ready to use, give it a quick stir and serve.
Nutrition Facts
Indian Raita – Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 59 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Fat 2g3%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Cholesterol 10mg3%
Sodium 40mg2%
Potassium 200mg6%
Carbohydrates 5g2%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 345IU7%
Vitamin C 3.1mg4%
Calcium 105mg11%
Iron 0.4mg2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Indian Raita - Recipe - Traditional Raita is an Indian condiment made with yogurt, fresh vegetables and spices. It is served as a side and relished for its cooling effect when eating spicy foods. My recipe includes cucumbers, serrano peppers and mint. #IndianFood #Curry

2 comments

  1. 5 stars
    I love that you added serrano peppers to something that’s meant to be cooling. I would do the same thing. Tastes killer.

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