Yogurt Soup (Yayla Çorbası)


Yogurt soup is a popular comfort dish both in Turkey and Central Asia. To me, it shows how we, Turks, are obsessed with yogurt; we even cook it! It’s also a very common sick soup; even inhaling the strong smell of mint or tarragon makes you feel better. Although Turks love this soup, I can see why many people, especially those who are not in good terms with yogurt, may not like this. So, the decision is up to you: to try or not to try…

1/4 cup rice
5 cups of water (if you wish you can use half chicken stock, half water)
2 cups of plain yogurt
1 egg
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp butter
2 tsp dried mint or tarragon
1 tsp salt

-Boil rice in 5 cups of water with salt until (very) soft.
-In a bowl, beat the egg and flour well, and then add yogurt and mix. With 1-2 tbsp water lighten up this mixture.
-Put the yogurt mix in a pot and start cooking on very low. It’s important that you start with low heat, otherwise yogurt would curdle. Give yogurt some time to get used to heat. Cook on low heat for approximately 15 minutes and keep stirring.
-Slowly pour in rice along with water into the soup. Keep stirring. First let it boil on medium and then turn it down and cook for another 10 minutes.
-Heat butter in a pan. Once it sizzles, add mint flakes and stir for 20-30 seconds (don’t let it burn). Then, pour it into soup.

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