Throughout India, creamy, chilled lassis are the go-to beverage for cooling off during the warmer months. To make them, milk or water-thinned yogurt is blended with ingredients such as strawberries or ripe mangoes. In the south Indian city of Hyderabad, the most popular lassi is made with Rooh Afza, a rose-scented syrup made with botanicals and sugar. This recipe first appeared in the tablet edition of our August/September 2014 special India issue.
- 2 cups plain, full-fat yogurt
- 1⁄2 cup ice-cold water
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- 1-2 tbsp. Rooh Afza or grape juice concentrate
- Vanilla ice cream or heavy cream, for topping (optional)
Chill a mixing bowl in the freezer. Add yogurt and water to bowl and, using a whisk, beat yogurt and sugar until smooth. Whisk in Rooh Afza; pour into glasses and top with 1–2 tbsp. ice cream or heavy cream if you like.