Savory Yogurt Flavors & Recipes | The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures - The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures Savory Yogurt Flavors & Recipes | The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures
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TIP OF THE DAY: How To Flavor & Use Savory Yogurt

Bagel With Yogurt
[1] Instead of cream cheese, lowfat Greek yogurt blended with garlic, dill and parsley (photo courtesy Chobani Café (all photos courtesy Chobani).

Pigs In A Blanket Yogurt Sauce
[2] Use yogurt in different types of sauces. Here, yogurt is blended with cheese as a dipping sauce for Pigs & Blankets, but you could eas easily use it on chicken, grains or pasta.

Chicken Salad Sandwich With Yogurt
[3] Use herb-and-spice-flavored yogurt instead of mayonnaise to find chicken salad, potato salad, etc. Here’s the recipe from Chobani.

Baked Penne With Yogurt
[4] Baked penne with spinach and sundried tomatoes. Here’s the recipe from Chobani. You can also use a spiced yogurt sauce to top spaghetti and other plain pasta dishes.

Curried Grilled Salmon With Yogurt Sauce
[5] Curried grilled salmon topped with raita, a spiced yogurt-cucumber sauce, dip and spread. Here’s the recipe from Chobani.

  How much of the yogurt you consume is sweet, flavored with fruit or vanilla?

How much of it is savory, with no added sweetness?

Many of us have made spicy yogurt dips for crudités, from the simple addition of herbs and spices, to substituting yogurt for higher-calorie mayonnaise and sour cream in artichoke or spinach dips.

Why not extend your use of savory yogurt to every meal? Here are some ideas, inspired by Flavor & The Menu, a magazine and website for creative chefs.

Says the article: The acidic (tangy) bite of yogurt is a refreshing ingredient, that naturally lifts the flavors of other ingredients added to it.

At the same time, yogurt has a neutral flavor profile that pairs well with just about anything.

The magazine named spicy yogurt as one of its Top 10 Culinary Trends for 2018.

With its tangy dairy notes and creamy mouthfeel, Greek yogurt has long been used to create a variety of savory dishes:

  • Creamy spreads
  • Creamy salads, substituting for mayonnaise in coleslaw, chicken salad, egg salad and pasta salad.
  • To add a creamy finish to sauces.
  • A replacement for a sour cream topping on baked potatoes, breakfast foods (bagel, oatmeal, pancakes, waffles), chili, soup, tacos.
  • As a garnish or sauce on any savory food, from chili to chicken to lamb to grilled vegetables…and beyond.
  • As a tenderizer in a marinade for meats.
  • In a salad dressing (as mayonnaise or sour cream replacement).
  • In a dip, simply blended or combined with pesto, hummus or guacamole.
  • In a smoothie or beverage, for added protein and creaminess.
  • Stirred into a vegetable purée for creaminess.
  • Blended with vegetables and frozen as a savory sorbet/palate cleanser.
  • And more!
    Have Some Beet Yogurt Or Carrot Yogurt

    One of our favorite techniques is to create containers of vegetable yogurt using purée of beets, carrots, pumpkin and other squash, spring peas and other favorites.

    Simply cook and purée the vegetables; then mix them with plain yogurt in proportions to taste.

    Greek-style yogurt is often turned into dips and spreads with the addition of cucumber, garlic, herbs and/or mint (think raita and tzatziki).

    Start with Greek-style yogurt, then use high-impact flavors:

  • Chopped or ground seeds: chia, flax, pumpkin, sesame.
  • Fresh herbs: basil, cilantro, dill, mint, oregano, parsley, tarragon, thyme.
  • Heat purées or sauces—Thai curries, harissa, gochujang, togarashi, chiles (ancho, gaujillo, chipotle).
  • Minced vegetables and pickled vegetables.
  • Roasted vegetable purées—carrot, sweet potato, tomato.
  • Spices and seasonings, including chile flakes, Chinese five-spice, cumin, garlic powder, ginger, hot mustard.
  • Toasted nuts or nut relish.
  • Vegetable powders—beet powder, matcha powder, mushroom powder, etc.
  • Whatever you have: coriander chutney, garam masala, mustard, pesto, tamarind, whatever.
    It’s almost impossible to make a pairing mistake.

    Here’s how you can use savory yogurt in just one meal category—brunch—suggests Flavor & The Menu.

    Here are four ideas; you can create your own versions or find similar recipes on line:

  • Carrot Pancakes with Za’atar Yogurt: a short stack of savory-sweet carrot and chickpea flour pancakes, griddled golden and puffed, topped with za’atar-spiced yogurt, toasted pistachios and golden raisins.
  • Cajun Hash Browns with Blue Cheese Yogurt: crispy sweet potato and Yukon Gold potato hash browns topped with a drizzle of tangy-rich blue-cheese yogurt and cayenne-pepper sauce.
  • Heirloom Tomato and Avocado Yogurt Bowl: Greek yogurt topped with pan-roasted heirloom grape tomatoes, avocado, a swirl of extra-virgin olive oil, toasted pepitas, flat-leaf parsley and coarse-ground sea salt.
  • Chorizo Chilaquiles with Eggs and Roasted Poblano Yogurt: smoky pinto beans, simmered with corn tortillas and spicy chorizo, topped with a fried egg, crumbled queso fresco and roasted poblano yogurt.
    How About Bagels?

    An easy creation we like: Greek yogurt blended with garlic, dill and parsley, on a toasted bagel; sliced onions, tomatoes, smoked salmon, cracked black pepper and lemon zest at will (photo #1).

    Tip: Mix the spread the night before so the flavors can meld.


    Cooking over heat will cause yogurt to separate. To avoid this, let the yogurt come to room temperature and and use one of these techniques:

  • “Temper” the yogurt: Spoon a bit of the hot food into the yogurt, blend, and then mix the yogurt into the pot or dish.
  • Whisk the yogurt: Add the yogurt and whisk vigorously, one tablespoon at a time.
  • Add an emulsifier: a teaspoon of mustard powder, if it works with the recipe; or else potato starch or powdered tapioca starch. First mix the emulsifier with a bit of cold water to form a slurry or paste; then add the slurry to the yogurt sauce, little by little. Go slowly to avoid lumps. Note that arrowroot and lecithin are not recommended to emulsify dairy products.
  • Add some starch to the yogurt: Before adding the yogurt to the hot food, per cup of yogurt, add one of the following: 2 teaspoons AP flour, 1 teaspoon cornstarch, 1 teaspoon rice flour.

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