February 03, 2020

Pahadi Raita | Kumaoni Raita

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Raita(hindi) or thayir pachadi (tamil) is a very flavorful yogurt based side dish served along with meals and is very famous all over India.  Each region has a different style of flavoring their raitas.  The south Indian version of raita Is generally flavored with plain salt and is tempered with mustard and udad dhall seeds along with red chillies or at times ground coconut chilli paste is added to the whipped yogurt and mixed with either grated cucumber or tomato or a mix of cucumber,carrots and tomato . Sometimes fine bits of green chilli are cut and added to whipped yogurt along with slices of onion which is the most preferred dish for Biryanis or South style famous Parotta.
The version of raita made in the northern India is flavored using roasted cumin powder , chat masala, red chilli powder and salt .  The vegetables used are finely diced and added to the yogurt.
At our home we love raita or pachadi to go along with our meal .
This month when we selected the theme as cuisines of Uttarakand in our Facebook group Shhhh secret cooking challenge , I was attracted to this recipe of Pahadi Raita or Kumaoni Raita as it is called. 
It is a simple cucumber based raita but the usage of mustard and fenugreek powder as flavoring agent is what elevates the taste and flavor of this dish.

My partner for this month's theme was another fellow blogger Priya Mahesh of  at200deg blog and she gave me  cucumber and methi seeds as the secret ingredients to work with while I gave her turmeric powder and corriander with which she has prepared Chainsoo a dal based dish .

Preparation Time - 5 mins
Cooking Time - nil
Serves - 2 to 3
Complexity  - easy

2 cups thick whisked yogurt
1 medium sized cucumber grated
1/2 tsp mustard powder
1/3 tsp methi powder
Pinch of salt
Pinch of red chilli powder
Pinch of turmeric
Pinch of roasted jeera powder

Grate the cucumber, squeeze out the water and keep aside .
Whisk the yogurt well in a wide bowl and add in all the spice powders and salt and mix it well .
Add the grated cucumber, mix it and let it set for atleast 30mins before serving . This setting time is needed for the flavor of mustard and methi powder to seep into the yogurt mixture .

A drizzle of mustard oil is traditionally done over the raita , I skipped it as we didn't like the flavor of mustard oil .

Powder the mustard freshly in a mortar pestle before making the raita to get the fresh aroma . Yellow mustard if used is best or else we can use the regular black mustard also for making the powder .