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Spring Carrot and Yogurt Dip

Take raita to another level and pair the refreshing yogurt with spiced carrots for a colorful dish that packs a punch. Serve as an appetizer with grilled vegetables or as part of a quick lunch with Sukhi’s naanwiches.

Inspired by Laurie Constantino’s Spicy Carrot Spread with Garlic Yogurt.

Photo and Recipe by Kim Sunée.

Spring Carrot and Yogurt Dip

Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Vegetarian
Cuisine Indian


  • 8 (about 1 pound) medium carrots
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt, divided
  • scant 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/8 to 1/4 tsp ground cayenne
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, lightly toasted, if desired
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, lightly toasted, if desired
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste

For the Yogurt

  • 1 cup plain low-fat Greek-style yogurt (strained) or 1 1/3 cups regular, plain yogurt, strained through a paper towel-lined sieve for at least 1 hour
  • 1 medium clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint and dill
  • fresh cilantro or mint and extra virgin olive oil, for garnish


  1. Peel and roughly chop carrots into large chunks; cook in boiling salted water to cover, about 15 to 20 minutes or until tender. Alternatively, place carrots in a microwave safe dish with 3/4 cup water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt, microwave carrots until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain water from carrots.

  2. Purée the carrots in a food processor or blender, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, until the carrots are smooth. Add olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and Cayenne pepper; blend to combine. Put carrot mixture in a bowl. Crush the coriander and cumin using a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder; stir spices into the carrots along with the black pepper. Taste and add more salt or lemon or Cayenne.

  3. While the carrots are cooking, mix the yogurt with the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, mint and dill in a bowl. Taste and adjust seasoning, as needed.

  4. Place the carrots in a large shallow bowl and make a well in the center. Spoon the yogurt into the well. Garnish, if desired, with more fresh herbs and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve with naan, grilled flatbread, or crackers.

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