Bananas in Yogurt (Kela Raita)

Banana slices (Photo by m_a_r_c/flickr)

Serves 4.


1 teaspoon ghee or oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
250 ml/8 fl oz/1 cup natural yogurt
3 tablespoons fresh grated coconut or desiccated coconut
2 or 3 firm ripe bananas
2 tablespoons lime or lemon juice


Heat ghee or oil in a small saucepan with a lid. Add mustard and cumin seeds, cover to prevent mustard seeds jumping all over the stove and fry on medium-low heat until they pop.

Remove from heat and add chilli powder, salt, sugar and yogurt. Turn into a bowl. If using fresh coconut stir it into the mixture. If desiccated coconut is used, sprinkle it with a tablespoon of water and mix with fingertips until evenly moistened before adding.

Peel and slice the bananas, and sprinkle with lime or lemon juice to prevent discolouration.

Fold into yogurt mixture, chill and serve with rice and curries.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)