Match of the week
Prawn curry and saffron lassi
I’m always on the lookout for interesting alcohol-free drinks to pair with food so was pleased to see that Asma Khan had listed some really interesting options at her Darjeeling Express residency at The Sun and 13 Cantons pub in Soho the other day.
We kicked off with her homemade lemonade which was great with some fresh crunchy ‘puchkas’ filled with tamarind water but I then spotted a saffron lassi which I thought would be a cooling counterpoint to our main course dishes.
I’m not normally that keen on lassis, finding many too sweet but this had just a hint of saffron which took it more in a savoury direction. (Apparently she only uses 3 strands of saffron which she infuses in a tablespoon of warm milk and leaves overnight in the fridge - or for a minimum of 4 hours. See full method below.)
It was a perfect match with the spicy prawn curry we'd ordered - maybe partly because we didn't have a raita and it did the same job of cooling the palate between bites. But it’s a great drink in its own right.
Darjeeling Express is open until March 2016 for lunch, early supper and snacks throughout the day and the menu changes every week. For full details of the times and the venue check out Asma’s website.
How to make saffron lassi
Asma writes: Add the saffron infused milk to 175ml yogurt and sugar*, add a bit of water and whip it together till the sugar dissolves. The quantity of water depends on the yogurt you use - bio/low fat yogurt will not require a lot of water. I use Greek/Turkish yogurt which is thicker and needs a bit more.
I only buy Persian saffron. I look for the kind with long strands - they are always better quality then the shorter strands. Sadly the quality of saffron can be inconsistent - the only way to buy saffron is by looking at the strands. The brand name is not important.
The lassi should not be too sweet or you will overwhelm the floral delicate taste of the saffron
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