Stay cool this summer with this Persian cold yogurt soup called Abdoogh Khiar. This tasty yogurt soup is made with simple, natural and healthy ingredients and is ready in only 15 minutes.
Yogurt is a big part of Persian and Mediterranean cooking. From basic homemade yogurt and cucumber yogurt dip to yayla corbasi and ayran, we love incorporating yogurt into our meals. Here is my ultimate summer go-to meal, Abdoogh Khiar a.k.a. Persian cold yogurt soup. Trust me, this will make your summer much cooler and more delicious.
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Yogurt Keeps You Cool!
Did you know that yogurt (especially plain) helps your body cool down on hot summer days? So does cucumber, and the combination has long been loved and made by many around the world including the Turks with cacik and the Greek with tzatziki. This Persian cold yogurt soup is made of a yogurt and water base called "Doogh" and other basic ingredients to balance the cold soup.
Just like its Spanish second cousin, gazpacho, Abdoogh Khiar is perfect for hot summer days when you want something light and easy that's not a salad or a sandwich. This chilled yogurt soup is also has herbs and walnuts which balances well with raisins and dried Persian rose petals.
I remember when I was in Iran, we always used to celebrate the beginning of summer with a big bowl of Persian cold yogurt soup. In my family, it was a summer ritual, just like taking a long nap under the air conditioner because summers is Iran are HOT.
Ingredients To Make Abdoogh Khiar
- Yogurt: It's best to use whole milk plain yogurt, but low fat or Greek yogurt would work, too. If you like to make yogurt from scratch, check out my tutorial on how to make yogurt in instant pot.
- Cucumber: The best cucumbers for this recipe are Persian cucumbers because they are super crisp. However, if they're not available, try using English cucumber.
- Herbs: Use what you have on hand. A combination of parsley, basil, mint and dill would work perfectly. Use the remainder of the herbs to make sabzi khordan (Persian herb platter).
- Raisins and walnuts: The amount of these items depend on your preference. It's best to use seedless raisins for this recipe.
- Bread: Traditionally we serve abdoogh khiar with dry lavash bread, but pita would work as well.
How To Make Abdoogh Khiar
- Reserve 1 cup of the yogurt and mix the rest with salt, dried mint and water then set it aside. This will be your "doogh".
- In a large bowl mix the remaining yogurt with raisins, walnuts, chopped cucumber and herbs.
- Add the yogurt and water mixture to the bowl and stir to combine. You can also use a whisk.
- Serve the cold yogurt soup in bowls and serve with dried lavash.
To eat abdoogh khiar, you need to tear the bread in your bowl and have it soak for a couple of minutes. Then enjoy your cold yogurt soup with a spoon. In each spoonful you'll have a little bit of everything: the yogurt base, the walnuts and raisins, the herbs and the bread.
Frequently Asked Questions
Simply cut it into small pieces and toast in the oven at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until crispy and dry. You can also use flour tortilla if you can't find lavash. And if you can't find either of these two, just go with any bread you have. It's going to taste fantastic!
Dried Persian rose petals are available in Middle Eastern/Iranian shops or sometimes Turkish shops. You can rub them between your fingers to powder them or use a clean coffee grinder and grind just the petals. This is an optional ingredient. It makes the cold yogurt soup very tasty but it's not necessary.
You can make the yogurt and water mix ahead of time and refrigerate it in a container. You can also chop the cucumber and herbs a few hours in advance and refrigerate them in separate containers.
For herbs, I use a combination of mint, parsley, dill and basil. What we want here is the flavor and aroma of an herb combination. If you don't have all these herbs at hand, just use a couple of them.
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Persian Cold Yogurt Soup – Abdoogh Khiar
- 2 ½ cups plain yogurt
- 6 cups cold water
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 teaspoons dried mint
- 4 Persian cucumbers diced
- ½ cup raisins
- 1 cup chopped walnut
- 1 ½ cup chopped herbs mint, parsley, dill and basil
- 2 teaspoons powdered Persian dried rose petals optional
- Ice optional
- 4 Lavash bread
- Reserve 1 cup of the yogurt and mix the rest with the 1 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoon dried mint and water (Use a whisk if needed). Set aside.
- Mix the remaining yogurt, salt and dried mint with cucumbers, raisins, walnut and herbs. Add in the yogurt and water mix to and stir to combine. Add in the rose petals if using.
- Divide the cold soup among large serving bowls and add ice if the soup is not cold enough.
- Break in the lavash into each bowl, let it soak for a few minutes and then enjoy.
- Seedless raisins work best for this recipe.
- For herbs, I use a combination of mint, parsley, dill and basil. What we want here is the flavor and aroma of an herb combination. If you don't have all these herbs at hand, just use a couple of them.
- You can find dried mints in the spice aisle of almost every supermarket.
- Dried Persian rose petals are available in Middle Eastern/Iranian shops or sometimes Turkish shops. You can rub them between your fingers to powder them or use a clean coffee grinder and grind just the petals. This is an optional ingredient. It makes the cold yogurt soup very tasty but it's not necessary.
- The ratio of the ingredients are totally up to you and your preference. I always like my soup to be somehow thicker because the ice melts and makes it just right.
- As for bread, traditionally we use lavash. I didn't dry it here but you can simply cut it into small pieces and bake it in the oven (350 degrees F) for 10 minutes until crispy and dry. You can also use flour tortilla if you can't find lavash. And if you can't find either of these two, just go with any bread you have. It's going to taste fantastic!