Why are you making me peel pomegranate!?
If you grow up in a Punjabi home like me and if you skipped milk or yogurt for one day, your mother thinks that she has gone terribly wrong in her upbringing and now she has to restore you back to health by feeding you three times your daily food intake for the rest of the week! Yes, that’s the Punjabi mother for you. Kidding aside, this joke has a kernel of truth in it: the importance of dairy, especially milk and yogurt in the daily diet of Punjabis. I grew up eating yogurt with every meal served at home. Yogurt (called curd or dahi is made at home) is eaten plain most of the times but sometimes my mom will add fruits, veggies and fritters to enhance the flavour or to go with a certain dish.
Pomegranate raita is a particular favourite of mine and apart from the peeling and extracting the seeds, it’s easy to make!
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1-2 fresh green chillies depending on size and the strength I use bird eye chillis
- 1/3 cup pomegranate seeds I like fresh seeds but you can buy them already extracted but make sure that they are not over ripe
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- salt to taste
Mix the yogurt and milk and beat it together so that it has a smooth consistency. You can add or reduce the amount of milk depending on how thick the yogurt is. You don't want the yogurt to be too watery or too thick.
Toast the cumin seeds until they are fragrant but don't burn them to black.
Grind the cumin seeds to a coarse powder in a pestle mortar as grinding releases the flavours but if you don't have one, you can use solid cumin seeds too.
Remove the seeds from the green chillies and chop them finely.
Add the chillies, pomegranate seeds, cumin seeds and salt to yogurt just before serving.