Taak also called Mattha is the Maharashtrian version of buttermilk which is made using yogurt (curd), herbs, and spices. It is a refreshing Indian summer drink that comes together in just 5 minutes using very basic ingredients.
About This Recipe
Taak or Mattha is nothing but spiced buttermilk made in Maharashtrian style. It has always been a must in my summer meals, due to its refreshing flavor and amazing cooling properties. A twist in your regular buttermilk, which is a little spicy, tangy, salty, and full of flavors.
I am very fond of buttermilk since my childhood. I remember my mother used to serve a full glass of chilled buttermilk during hot summer days. But when I came to Pune, I came across this new variation Taak, which was subtly flavored with green chilies, ginger, and a tadka of cumin seeds and curry leaves (phodnichi mattha). It just changed the buttermilk game instantly!
My house help told me that it was traditionally prepared by churning malai (milk fat) with a wooden buttermilk churner. The butter was separated which was used for various recipes, and the leftover sour whey which is called Matha was used to make spiced taak.
You can also get plain Mattha from a local nearby dairy, and temper it at home to make a Masala Phodnichi (tempered) Taak.
Since churned whey is not easily available these days, I make taak at home using yogurt, which is a super-easy way of preparing Maharashtrian buttermilk. And I assure you this one will refresh you up instantly, keep you hydrated and also give you relief from the scorching heat.
Health Benefits Of Taak
Buttermilk is great for your stomach as it helps in digestion, fights acidity, and calm the stomach after a heavy meal.
It cools down your body, and gives you an instant relief from the scorching heat.
Taak is great for hydration too! It is also said that it helps in reducing blood pressure and also brings a drop in your cholesterol level.
Yogurt – You can either use homemade plain yogurt (curd) or get it from a grocery store.
Salt – To season the Taak, add regular white salt or black salt.
Water – If you plan to serve the taak immediately, use chilled water. If refrigerating it and serving later, regular water also works.
Cilantro – Cilantro (coriander) adds a refreshing flavor and taste to this drink.
Ginger and Green Chili Peppers – Fresh ginger along with green chili peppers adds that much-needed heat and spicy flavor to this Maharashtrian buttermilk. Adjust the amount as per your liking.
Cumin Powder – For the best flavor, make cumin powder at home using my simple recipe.
You can also add in a little dry mint powder, as it adds a beautiful flavor.
How to make Taak?
Transfer 1 cup yogurt and 2 cups of chilled water to a large bowl. Use a wire whisk to mix these two.
Note – I like little pieces of yogurt coming into my mouth and so I don’t whisk yogurt before adding water to it. Having said that, if you prefer smooth buttermilk, then whisk the yogurt until smooth and then mix it with water.
Add salt to taste, 1 tbsp finely chopped cilantro, ½ tsp roasted cumin powder, ½ tsp grated ginger, and ½ tsp chopped green chili peppers to the bowl and mix well. Set aside.
Some people don’t like cilantro, ginger, etc coming in their mouth while sipping the buttermilk. In that case, you can strain it using a fine-mesh strainer after refrigerating it for 1-2 hours, so that all their flavors steep well in the buttermilk.
You can also make a paste of cilantro, ginger, and green chili peppers and add the paste to the yogurt and water mixture.
To temper the taak, heat 1 tsp vegetable oil in a small skillet over medium high heat.
Once the oil is hot, add ½ tsp cumin seeds and 5-6 chopped curry leaves and let them crackle for 3-4 seconds.
Pour the tempering over the buttermilk and mix well.
Chill the buttermilk for a few hours before serving. You can regrigerate it for up to 2 days. Do not freeze.
You can serve Mattha along with your everyday meals or just enjoy it as a snack whenever the hunger strikes or you feel dehydrated and thirsty.
I like to serve it with Maharashtrian dishes such as Phodnichi Poli, which is a leftover roti poha or masala bhat. This simple combination is a must-try.
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- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 2 cups chilled water
- salt (to taste)
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped clantro (coriander)
- ½ teaspoon cumin powder
- ½ teaspoon grated ginger
- ½ teaspoon finely chopped green chili peppers
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 5-6 curry leaves (chopped)
- Whisk yogurt and chilled water in a large bowl.
- Note – Do not whisk the yogurt before mixing it with water otherwise, it will become very smooth. We are looking for little pieces of yogurt coming into your mouth. Having said that, if you prefer smooth buttermilk, then whisk the yogurt before mixing it with water.
- Stir salt to taste, finely chopped cilantro, cumin powder, grated ginger, and finely chopped green chili pepper.
- Heat vegetable oil for tempering in a small skillet.
- Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and chopped curry leaves and let them crackle for 3-4 seconds.
- Pour the tempering over the buttermilk and mix well.
- Chill the buttermilk for a few hours before serving. You can strain it just before serving if you don’t like cilantro and chili coming into your mouth. The flavors of cilantro, ginger, and green chili will steep in the taak after chilling for a few hours.