Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Doogh, summer heat and my favorite salt

The sunny, lazy days of summer are here a bit early this year. Spring has more summer than in it than I've experienced in a while and all of Seattle is responding in kind with tank tops, ice cream strolls and grocery stores running out of ice.
In all my years sweating out spring, summer and early fall in Los Angeles I learned a few tricks on how to cope with the heat. Cool drinks were always my salvation. Ice tea to be sure but also doogh was always high on my cooling drinks list.
I just made my self a tasty batch and sip away while the fan blows my hair, Chavela Vargas croons and I type away on my dusty old blog...

Makes enough for 2

1 cup fresh plain yogurt (homemade is preferable, but a store bought works, too)
1 cup + 2T cold water
Splash of club soda
pinch of salt
pinch of lime, rose petal and cumin salt*
pinch of dried mint

Loads and loads of ice

Mix up the yogurt and water so there are no lumps (blender works best). Fill two highball glasses halfway with ice, pour in the yogurt-water to fill 3/4. Top with club soda and stir. Sprinkle and the salt and spices onto the top and guzzle.

*I make my own (recipe below), optional

Lime, Rose Petal and Cumin Salt
4-5 Persian dried limes, insides discarded, ground to a fine powder
2T toasted and ground cumin
3-4 dried rose heads, petals only ground to a coarse powder

I like to source my dried limes at a local bodega style persian market. It's a very welcome addition to our pantry, so don't be modest in your purchase. I use a coffee grinder dedicated to grinding spices to reduce it to a powder. This is very difficult to pull off with a mortar and pestle and I don't recommend it!
Grind all of the spices individually and then measure them together in a measuring cup. Add the salt at the ratio 3:2, spice to salt.

I use this salt on legumes, salads that feature avocado, poached chicken and loads of other applications, including doogh.