The Healing Power of Culinary Herbs: Turmeric Yogurt Soup

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Photo by Howard Lee Puckett

Serves 4 to 6

• 1?3 cup garbanzo bean flour
• 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
• 1?4 teaspoon chili powder
• 1?2 teaspoon salt
• 1 3?4 cups plain low-fat yogurt
• 2 tablespoons peanut oil
• 3 cups water
• Chile Pepper Garnish (recipe below), fresh parsley sprigs, for garnish

1. Whisk together garbanzo bean flour, turmeric, chili powder and salt in a large bowl.  Whisk in yogurt until no lumps remain.

2. Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat.  Whisk in yogurt mixture and then water.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Reduce the heat to low and cook, whisking constantly 8 minutes, or until soup thickens slightly and no longer has a “raw” taste.

3. Ladle into warmed soup bowls and top with Chile Pepper Garnish (recipe below).

Chile Pepper Garnish

• 1 1?2 teaspoons peanut oil
• 3?4 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1?2 teaspoon black or brown mustard seeds
• 1?2 teaspoon crushed fenugreek seeds
• 4 to 6 fresh red chili peppers

1. Heat oil in a small skillet. Add the cumin, mustard and fenugreek seeds and cook, stirring constantly until seeds start to jump and crackle. Add chili peppers and remove skillet from heat. Stir for about 30 seconds, or until peppers blister. (If the peppers are fresh, they might burst and “jump,” so stand back.)

Gina Mohammed, Ph.D., is a plant physiologist who researches medicinal and other specialty uses of plants. She lives in Ontario, Canada. Visit her

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