A mix of fresh herbs and aromatic spices which, when combined with yogurt and lemon juice, creates an authentic Indian dip. It can be used with any snacks or main meal such as Tandoori chicken, chips, wedges, or veggies.
No preservatives or additives, no colouring, gluten free, nut free and fat free. It is also salt free although salt can be added to taste if required.
Ingredients: asafoetida, chaat masala, coriander, mint, paprika, and pomegranate.
New Zealanders are becoming much more adventurous with their cuisine and I think this is wonderful - we have so much cultural diversity in our society now, and this is reflected in the great variety of different cooking styles and combinations of ingredients offered in restaurants and on supermarket shelves. I love trying out new things and exploring new flavours, and many of my friends are just as ready as I am to explore fresh gastronomical delights!
I was already familiar with some of the products in the Leena's Spices range, so when I saw their colourful display at a Home & Garden Show recently, I was keen to try some of the samples on offer. One in particular - the Yogurt Dip - was especially delicious so I immediately purchased some to try when I got home. It comes as a dry spice mix ready for combining with other ingredients.
Since opening the packet, I have tried the spice in various ways. The recommended way to mix it is with yogurt and lemon juice (with salt as an optional extra), but I also tried it as a dry rub on oven baked chicken (lovely tandoori taste) and mixed with reduced cream and garlic instead of yoghurt and used it in place of butter in a very different version of garlic bread. Finally, I used it mixed as recommended in place of tartare sauce to accompany a takeaway meal of unsalted fish and chips. The three options were very different but equally mouth-watering,
What appeals to me most is the warm chilli aftertaste - I love the combination of coriander and asafoetida, and have often had difficulties sourcing the latter, so it is great that they are now available locally. It is fun to experiment with different spice mixes, especially when there are several people interested in trying them out! We shared our takeaways with friends who were both resistant to having an alternative to their preferred tomato (her) and tartare (him) sauces. However, they were both intrigued by the new flavour and enjoyed it as an innovative alternative to their usual choice.
I appreciate the fact that this mix is made from natural ingredients and is suitable for people on some special diets: it is gluten free, nut free, and vegetarian friendly. It does not contain salt although the suggested recipe does state that you can add it if you wish. It is nice to have the option, however; I for one don't use much salt. I prefer to use other herbs and spices to flavour my food.
So all in all, a very successful purchase - and although I have used it for three different meals now, I still have most of the packet left. This means that it is not only tasty and versatile, but also really economical. And if it is like the other Leena spices I have already, it will keep for ages in the resealable pack without losing flavour - another plus!
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