Buttermilk, known as chaas or chaach in India is a very popular probiotic drink. It is very refreshing and popularly served with meals or anytime of the day.
Indian buttermilk is made in a variety of ways, spiced buttermilk or masala chaas being one. Plain buttermilk is also preferred by many as it has no spices added and is equally refreshing.
What is buttermilk?
Buttermilk is the leftover liquid while churning cultured butter. Cultured butter is made by collecting cream from boiling raw milk and then fermenting it by adding yogurt culture.
This fermented cream is then churned to make cultured butter and the by product of this process is buttermilk. Buttermilk is high in probiotics and helps in digestion.
You can read my post on making cultured ghee at home that describes the complete process of making fermented cream, cultured butter, buttermilk and ghee.
Since this complete process of making buttermilk from fermented cream is long and tedious, it is very convenient and easy to make the Indian buttermilk from yogurt.
Ingredients to make Indian buttermilk
Indian buttermilk or chaas can be made with spices and herbs or just plain. The main ingredient to make Indian buttermilk is yogurt. You can make yogurt in instant pot at home easily or use store bought yogurt.
Yogurt must be fresh and can be a little tangy but not sour. Using sour yogurt will make the buttermilk sour and you may not like the taste.
For making plain chaas or plain buttermilk, some salt and roasted cumin seed powder is all you need.
Spiced Indian buttermilk or masala chaas, on the other hand, has some ginger, green chilies for some spiciness. Mint and cilantro are added for a refreshing taste.
How to make buttermilk from yogurt?
Making buttermilk at home is a 5-minute task. To make spiced buttermilk, add the yogurt, chilled water, green chilies, ginger paste, mint leaves, salt, and some roasted cumin seeds in Vitamix or any other blender and blend on medium-high speed until everything is well blended.
How to serve spiced Indian buttermilk?
Masala chaas is served in a variety of ways. Some like to serve it along with their meals and some prefer it after the meals.
While serving, pour some chilled buttermilk in a glass and then optionally garnish it with some roasted cumin seed powder, fresh mint leaves, chopped cilantro leaves.
If you don't have roasted cumin powder, you can easily make it at home quickly. Heat a skillet on medium flame and roast a tablespoon or two of cumin seeds until they are brown and aromatic. Using a mortar and pestle, grind the roasted cumin seeds coarsely.
How to store masala chaas?
Spiced buttermilk stores well for 3-4 days in the fridge. You can make it ahead and enjoy this refreshing beverage any time of the day or with your meals.
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Indian Buttermilk - Masala Chaas
- 1 cup Yogurt
- 2 cup Water (chilled)
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- ¼ teaspoon Serrano pepper (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon Ginger (optional)
- 2-3 count Mint leaves (more for garnishing)
- ¼ teaspoon Roasted cumin seed powder
- Cilantro (chopped, for garnishing)
- In a blender, add yogurt, water, serrano pepper, ginger, mint leaves, roasted cumin seeds, and salt.
- Gradually start from low to high speed until buttermilk is well blended. (about 20-30 seconds).
- Pour the buttermilk in serving glasses and garnish with some mint leaves, roasted cumin seed powder, and some chopped cilantro.