Beetroot borani with dried mint, red onions & cumin

by Sumayya Usmani

A vegetarian appetiser inspired by the cuisine of west Pakistan


2 large beetroot, or use prepared beetroot without vinegar if in a hurry
1-2 tbsp olive oil
400g full fat Greek yoghurt, strained
1 large pinch of freshly pureed garlic
¼ tsp golden caster sugar or jaggery
1 tsp dried mint
1 tsp dry roasted cumin seeds, browned in a small, dry cast iron pan
A handful of finely chopped fresh coriander and dill leaves
A splash of white wine vinegar or lemon juice

To garnish:
1 tbsp roughly chopped pine nuts
1 tbsp roughly chopped pistachios
2 tbsp crispy fried red onions


Preheat the oven to 150C. Begin by prepping the beetroot. Scrub the beetroot, but don't peel them. Brush with olive oil, place in foil and wrap. Cook for 1-2 hours, until tender.

Once cooked, peel and cut the beetroot into thin slices with a mandolin or sharp knife. Set aside on a plate.

Add the crushed garlic, sugar, dried mint, lemon and cumin to the yoghurt. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chopped herbs and vinegar or lemon juice, to taste.

Transfer the yoghurt to a serving platter or serving bowl, place the slices of beetroot over the yoghurt and when ready to serve, garnish with the chopped nuts and crispy red onions.

Recipe: Sumayya Usmani