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Nadir Yakhin – Lotus Roots in a yogurt sauce

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A few of friends of Spiceroots recently asked me to share some traditional recipes from Kashmir.  Today I chose to share the Nadir Yakhin – Lotus Roots in yogurt sauce,  as it brings a lot of happy memories from my childhood. My cousin and I used to steal pieces of lotus roots from each other’s plates – just so the other did not get to eat one too many. We would sit next to each other and keep a sharp eye out for a moment when the other was not looking and grab it from the plate. Of course we could always help ourselves to some more from the kitchen, but where was the fun in that. Kids feeding vegetables to the family dog under the table? Not we two! Especially not when my Grand mother made this dish.

The best part is that even though we have grown up, we still don’t trust each other with this dish around. If we didn’t have to be a good example for kids around us, we might still end up fighting over it. Sometimes, being an adult is hard.

Nadir Yakhin

This is a quintessential Kashmiri dish and is the star of a vegetarian festive meal. In my opinion, the best tasting nadur (lotus roots) are from Kashmir and if you have ever eaten those, nothing else comes a close second. The slender, long roots are mild with a great texture. It doesn’t really have a flavor of its own, but takes on the flavors of the spices and yet maintains its individuality. And did I tell you that there is a specific technique involved in eating them?

Well, they are made up of thin stringy hair like fibers. So if you cut and eat them along their length, you won’t see the fibers. But if you cut them diagonally, the hair like strings kind of flow out, which might put you off.

Nadir Yakhin – Lotus Roots in a yogurt sauce

The quintessential Kashmiri dish, part of every wazwaan/ saal and the star of a vegetarian festive meal. This dish is an acquired taste, for the sauce is mild and the lotus roots have no flavor on their own.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Kashmiri

Ingredients

  • Lotus roots nadur – 500 gms
  • yogurt – 2 cups if using homemade yogurt in India use 3 cups of yogurt
  • water – 2 cups plus 2 cups ( one cup for Indian dahi plus 2 cups)
  • 1/4 tsp sonth ginger powder
  • 2 tbs fennel powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 brown cardamom
  • 2 green cardamom
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp dried mint
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp shahi zeera
  • 1 tbsp ghee

Instructions

  1. Cut the lotus roots in 2 inch long pieces and partially cook them in 2 cups of water. You can pressure cook them until tender or boil them until tender.

  2. Whisk the yogurt and add the fennel. Add in the water and blend to mix.

  3. Cook the yogurt and water mix on high heat and keep stirring until it comes to a rolling boil.
  4. Reduce heat and cook for about 20- 25 minutes until the yogurt thickens slightly.

  5. Add in the partially cooked lotus roots.

  6. In a tadka pan heat the ghee, add in cumin and the whole spices and cook until lightly fragrant. Add this tadka to the yogurt and lotus root, add salt, the shahi zeera and dried mint and cook on low heat until the sauce thickens to your desired consistency and the lotus roots are cooked through.

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Comments 7

  1. Hi! While I love that you are willing to make a kashmiri dish, this method is incorrect.

    Add Sarso tel, Fennel and Dry ginger powder, along with moti elaichi and nadru in cooker. 4 seeti and add curd slowly (whisked ofcourse!)

    Add salt.

    Bring to boil. Its done.

    Ps – I am a native kashmiri.

    1. Post
      Author

      Hi Antara,

      Thanks for your comment.

      This is how I make it in my home in Kashmir. Use of Sarson Ka tel in Yakhni is not really traditional aka a real waza would never do it. But then each home has its own method and if you love the way you make it, then please continue to make it that way.

      Ansh ‘Dhar’ ..

      PS- born to Kashmiri parents in Kashmir and brought up in Kashmir.

  2. I remember making this with fresh lotus root (from an international produce market here) long time back during our orkut days using a recipe from Koshur Saal. 🙂 I remember it as creamy, spicy, fragrant and Easy! I find similarities in lotus root and water chestnut as they both stay crunchy even in curries. A bowl of this will warm up any winter.

  3. I got lotus roots form the can. Never tried this before will try soon, But Yogurt has no flour, does it not tear when cooked? Silly question, But every time I make Kadhi, I add besan to it, so this Q. Hugs and Thank you for giving some unique Kashmir Recipes.
    Love Ash.

    1. Post
      Author

      Ash, mix the fennel powder and whisk the yogurt completely. Then keep stirring the yogurt and bring it to a boil on high heat.

    1. Post
      Author

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