Smoked Buttermilk

Smoked Buttermilk

Few days ago my dad shared an article with me about Dhup Chaas. Chaas is buttermilk and in pune it is a go to drink during summers and is also called mattha. Dhup means an incense stick but in this case was a smoking coal. Being a huge fan of Buttermilk which is called mattha, i was curious immediately about the light smoky flavors that the smoke would impart.

We thus started off by preparing the buttermilk or mattha the way we like it. For each person We used half a cup of grass fed whole milk yogurt and watered it down by half its volume first. We just mixed it slowly with a spoon and as it started to get creamy we whisked   It quite nicely. Then we thinned it down with some water and mixed well. Do not use a blender, its too harsh and the yogurt collapses and the fat seperates as well as the buttermilk foams too much. 

We then seasoned it with some salt and some sugar. We took half a tea spoon of chopped ginger and lightly crushed it in our mortar pestal and added a tea spoon of water to it to grab all the ginger juices and mixed in with the buttermilk. We finished with some finely chopped half tsp stems of cilantro lightly crushed with the back of spoon and maybe a few strands of cilantro leaf. We mixed the buttermilk or our mattha with spoon and we were ready. We find these flavors refreshing as the ginger really freshens up the creamy taste of buttermilk and cilantro adds some herby aroma to the nose. We kept the single portions of buttermilk ready in a slightly wide mouth glass than the smoked serving glass. The one we used was much like a cocktail shaker.

Some other varieties exist which add lot more spices like asafoetida, chaat masala, chaas masala, black pepper, green chilies or crushed roasted cumin. Some also add mint purees or cilantro purees and this results in a very green buttermilk. These flavors although fun on various moods and occassions, might not let the the smoky flavors stand out. 

With mattha prepared, we got our charcoal going. Once it was smoking, we added some carom seeds and clove to it. We then poured a spoon of ghee over the hot charcoal and it started to smoke immediately. 

We cupped the glass over this and the glass collected smoke and we really let it fil up.

Once the glass was smoked we immediately held it upside down over the buttermilk glass and then inverted to shake and infuse smoke and transfer buttermilk to the smoked glass. 

Our refreshing smoked mattha was ready! It had subtle smoky taste and a wonderful cooling effect after a hit afternoon. 

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