August 6, 2021

Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup

Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup

Growing up in hot and humid Singapore, my Mom would make a side dish of "pachadi" (also known as raita depending on where you are in India). Pachadi for those of us from Tamil Nadu is a yogurt side dish with chopped cucumbers and tomatoes, although one could make it with pretty much any raw edible vegetable you had on hand. (Not to confuse people, but pachadi in Andhra Pradesh and Telengana is a side pickle dish without yogurt). Pachadi was always a favorite and we just couldn't get enough of it because it instantly cooled you down in the tropics.

Now that I live here in New Jersey, while pachadi isn't something I make routinely, I do make this chilled yogurt soup which reminds me of a soup version of the pachadi of my youth. Every summer I find myself with a bounty of herbs either from friends' gardens or my own indoor herb garden and don't always feel inspired to know what to do with them. If you're in such a welcome predicament, I urge you to try this chilled yogurt soup recipe. Once again, it's one of those "non-recipe" recipes where you can make this your own by adding whatever you have an abundance of. The above recipe is a guide in terms of quantities that suits my palate but feel free to change it out based on what you have on hand. I created this recipe based on the ingredients given to me by a friend who had an abundance of vegetables and herbs from her farm. But typically, the chilled yogurt soup I make at home consists of just yogurt, garlic, cilantro, jalapeños and salt and pepper. That's about it.

As you can tell there are endless variations to this recipe. Have an extra shallot lying around? Add that to the blender, or if you don't have dill but have parsley or cilantro instead? Add those. It's a very forgiving recipe and absolutely perfect on those hot summer days.

Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup

Unsure of what to do when your herbs are getting a little out of control? This chilled yogurt soup is your answer!


Shilpa Iyer













  • 3 cups regular yogurt (or 2 cups greek yogurt plus 1 cup water)
  • 4 persian cucumbers, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 5 garlic chives (or 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped)
  • 1/4 cup basil, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup mint, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup dill, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • sliced jalapeños for garnishing
  • sprinkle of Aleppo pepper
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • squeeze of lemon


  1. In a food processor or blender combine the yogurt, water (if using), cucumbers, garlic chives, basil, mint, dill, salt and pepper. Process the ingredients until smooth. If you find the resulting soup too thick, add a splash or water to thin it out to the consistency you like. If it's too thin, add a bit more yogurt.
  2. Place the soup in a container and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. It's best to allow the flavors to develop overnight in the refrigerator, however.
  3. Serve the soup chilled and garnish each bowl with sliced jalapeños, a sprinkle of Aleppo pepper, a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.
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