Summer is here, in all its steamy glory, and I hope you are outside enjoying it to the fullest. I’m going for long bike rides, gardening, and just walking out in the world as much as possible. This is the perfect time for a creamy, turmeric-laced lassi.
The lassi is an Indian tradition. It’s a smooth mix of yogurt or buttermilk and spices, and often fruit. Lassi can be salty and savory, or sweet. It’s often served as a cooling antidote to hot, spicy foods. Yogurt is one of the few substances that actually cuts through a coating of chili heat in your mouth, and allows you to wash it away, a little at a time.
For my summertime lassi, I wanted to play up the sunny glow of the drink with a knob of fresh turmeric and some sweet mango. I’m a turmeric devotee, as you can read in some past posts, like this one on fresh turmeric and a dal recipe and a carrot-turmeric tonic recipe that’s really good for your skin.
Turmeric is so good for your body, you really can’t go wrong with it. I’m motivated by the need to preserve my brain health, as well as hoping to avoid the achy, creaky feelings in my body that come from inflammation. But those are just a few of the good things turmeric does for you.
Ginger is no slouch when it comes to healthful qualities, and will add a pleasant pepperiness, as well. A few black peppercorns add piperine, which increases the bioavailability of the curcumin in turmeric. It’s really a powerful synergy, just a little black pepper makes turmeric levels rise in the bloodstream, so don’t skip that bit of pepper.
I’m grateful that my Coop carries fresh turmeric regularly, and I keep some in the freezer. I like to buy a few extra roots, slice them into 1/2 inch pieces, and throw them in a freezer bag. That way, I can toss the frozen chunk right into my Vitamix and blend it with my other smoothie ingredients. For cooking, the small slices thaw quickly and can be minced and added to curries and sauces.
Just take a moment to wipe up as soon as turmeric comes into contact with your counter top, or you will have a colorful stain to mark the occasion.
Cool off, nourish yourself, and protect your body, all in one delicious drink.
Turmeric Mango Lassi
- 1 inch fresh turmeric root sliced
- 1 knob fresh ginger sliced
- 1 cup vanilla yogurt, non-dairy or dairy
- 1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1 cup ice cubes
- fresh mint for garnish
- Place everything in the blender and puree. If you don't have a Vitamix or other strong blender, chop the turmeric and ginger to they will be easier on the machine.
- Serve immediately,