Spiced Yogurt with Pomegranates and Pistachios


A simple but exquisite dessert: jewel-like pomegranate seeds and a sprinkling of green pistachio nuts adorn a sweetly perfumed and faintly spicy mound of strained yogurt or light curd cheese such as quark.

My recipe is based on a traditional dessert known as shrikhand in Western India and sikarni in Nepal. It’s made with creamy yogurt drained for several hours through muslin (see the Peppered Yogurt Cheese) until thickened. The resulting creamy ‘cheese’ is flavoured with sugar, black pepper and sweet spices.



Cover the pistachio nuts with boiling water, leave for 5 minutes then slip off the skins. Chop the nuts coarsely and set aside.

Beat the yogurt cheese with the rose water and Spiced Sugar. Divide the mixture between four serving bowls and chill until ready to serve.

With a small sharp knife, score the pomegranate skin from top to bottom into four segments, taking care not to puncture the juicy seeds inside. Break the pomegranate in half, then into quarters. Bend the skin back to release the seeds and remove any bits of yellow membrane.

Sprinkle the seeds over the yogurt and top with a sprinkling of pistachios.