Mimsy Were the Borogoves

Food: Recipes, cookbook reviews, food notes, and restaurant reviews. Unless otherwise noted, I have personally tried each recipe that gets its own page, but not necessarily recipes listed as part of a cookbook review.

Breakfast lassi

Jerry Stratton, August 23, 2023

Cardamom Lassi and Ultimate Granola: Cardamom Lassi and the Ultimate (Michigan) Granola, for an indulgent breakfast.; cereal; granola; lassi

A balanced breakfast: granola and cardamom lassi.

Ginger Lassi and Rocky Road Fudge: Ginger Lassi and Rocky Road Fudge for the perfect healthy breakfast.; lassi; fudge

An unbalanced breakfast: ginger lassi and rocky road fudge.

Ginger Lassi prepped for blending: Ginger Lassi from Elizabeth Gordon’s Lincoln Continental Guide to the Cuisines of the Western World.; lassi; ginger

Ginger lassi prepped for blending in a mason jar.

I discovered breakfast lassi in the Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2006. Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez’s recipe calls for yogurt, cardamom, sugar, and ice, whipped in a blender. They’re basically very simple smoothies without fruit.

Cardamom lassi

Cardamom Lassi

Servings: 1
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez
Review: Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2006 (Jerry@Goodreads)


  • 8 oz Greek yogurt (1 cup)
  • 1-2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 large ice cube
  • ¼ tsp cardamom


  1. Place all ingredients into blender container.
  2. Grind until ice is ground.
  3. Whip until desired consistency.
Blending cardamom lassi: Cardamom lassi, blended in an Osterizer.; lassi; Osterizer blender

Blending cardamom lassi in the jar I’ll be drinking it from.

Weighing yogurt for lassi: Weighing one cup of Greek yogurt in a blender-compatible jar for lassi.; yogurt; scale

And the easy way to measure yogurt into a jar for blending: eight ounces is one cup.

It’s a simple recipe and easy to make right in the mug, if (a) your mug fits a standard mason jar top and (b) your blender accepts a standard mason jar top.

I don’t know how standard that feature is on blenders, but I’ve found it very useful on my Osterizer. It’s been useful enough that when I saw a nearly-identical model in the basement of an antique shop this summer, I picked it up as a spare. The “antique” version (service number 890-16F) looks a little nicer than the one I bought new many years ago (service number 890-08N), so I’ve made my original the spare, and you can see the basement antique in the pictures here.

The external parts are interchangeable, which means I also have an extra blade assembly and an extra jar. None of which I need for these recipes: I don’t need an extra blade, and I don’t use the large jar at all.

To further reduce the number of items that need cleaning, I measure the yogurt by weight rather than volume. Eight ounces of the Greek yogurt brand I use is one cup. By measuring it straight into the drinking glass, I don’t even need to clean a measuring cup when I’m done.

If it’s too thick for you, you can add water or more ice cubes.

There’s a recipe for a ginger yogurt dessert in Elizabeth Gordon’s Lincoln Continental Guide to Cuisines of the Western World. With only a moderate change, this provided my second breakfast lassi. By reducing the sugar and candied ginger, and adding ice cubes, it turns from a dessert to a drink. I like this one thinner than the cardamom lassi, so I add a bit of water as well.

Ginger Lassi closeup

Ginger Lassi

Servings: 1
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Elizabeth Gordon


  • 8 oz Greek yogurt (1 cup)
  • 2 tbsp ginger candy
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • two ice cubes and enough water to make ⅓ cup


  1. Add everything to the blender container.
  2. Grind until ice is blended.
  3. Whip until desired consistency.

This one’s a very refreshing morning drink, and in fact was my breakfast this morning as I write this. You can get the original back by not adding either ice or water, tripling the amount of candied ginger (which will now need to be chopped fine), adding an extra teaspoon of brown sugar, beating it together by hand, and chilling it in four custard cups.

The Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2010 has Peggy Markel’s more involved saffron lassi. It requires softening the saffron twice, first in water and then in the yogurt while the yogurt is chilling. It makes less—only ¾ cup instead of a full cup—probably partly because the flavor of saffron is more filling than that of fruit or spices.

Saffron lassi

Saffron Lassi

Servings: 1
Preparation Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Peggy Markel
Review: Food and Wine Annual Cookbook 2010 (Jerry@Goodreads)


  • 6¾ oz Greek yogurt (¾ cup)
  • Small pinch of saffron
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 4 tbsp water


  1. Crumble saffron into 1 tbsp water.
  2. Mix sugar with 4 tbsp water.
  3. Microwave sugar about one minute.
  4. Stir until sugar dissolves.
  5. Freeze about five minutes until cold.
  6. Whisk yogurt with the saffron and syrup.
  7. Refrigerate one hour, whisking occasionally, until cold and brightly-colored.

The saffron lassi can be made the night before, and I do occasionally make it because I enjoy saffron. But the other recipes are far easier, and far more easily varied. For example, feeling decadent a few mornings ago, I made cocoa-cardamom lassi. To the cardamom lassi I added cocoa and vanilla. Taking a cue from the saffron lassi, I also use less yogurt here, because I want the cocoa flavor to predominate. I’m not a fan of chocolate foods that don’t taste like chocolate.

You could do the same thing with malt, and I have, dropping the cardamom and using 2 tablespoons malted milk powder instead of the cocoa and vanilla. I’ve also replaced the basic recipe’s sugar with a favorite jam or jelly.

Cocoa-cardamom lassi

Cocoa Lassi

Servings: 1
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Jerry Stratton


  • 6¾ oz Greek yogurt (¾ cup)
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1½ tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp cardamom
  • ⅛ tsp vanilla
  • 2-3 ice cubes


  1. Add all ingredients to blender container.
  2. Grind until ice is blended.
  3. Whip to desired consistency.

At that point it’s as untraditional a lassi as you can get. For a far more traditional lassi, you might try Bharti Kirchner’s Lebur Lassi from her Healthy Cuisine of India.

I’ve never made it, and had completely forgotten that I’d highlighted it for future meals. Back when I first started doing reviews of cookbooks, I would describe the recipes I did make and my impressions of them, and then add a recipe to the end of the review that was aspirational. The recipe was specifically a recipe that I did not make, but found to be an interesting comment on the kinds of things the cookbook contained.

The problem with that strategy is that I never had time, and now that I do I’d completely forgotten about it. Which is too bad, because that looks like a great breakfast lassi—or a great afternoon-sitting-out-on-the-back-porch lassi.

Lebur Lassi

Lebur Lassi

Servings: 1
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Bharti Kirchner
The Healthy Cuisine of India
The Healthy Cuisine of India


  • ¾ cup plain yogurt
  • ½ cup water
  • 3 ice cubes
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tblsp fresh lime juice
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • dash nutmeg


  1. Combine yogurt, water, ice sugar, lime, and salt in a blender.
  2. Purée until smooth and bubbly and the ice cubes are crushed.
  3. Pour into a chilled glass.
  4. Sprinkle nutmeg on top before serving.

And when you’re making these in a blender, it is trivially easy to multiply by the number of people—four or less should easily fit in a single blender jar to be portioned out in separate cups. These are all very good, and a great way of satisfying a morning sweet tooth with a relatively healthy breakfast.

Unless, of course, you accompany it with rocky road fudge.

February 14, 2024: Eggnog for Breakfast… and Beyond!
Drink Your Breakfast!: Social media image for breakfast eggnog blog post.; breakfast; egg nog; eggnog

One of Bill Cosby’s greatest jokes involved a dad angrily making breakfast for the kids. His four-year-old asks for chocolate cake, and the dad is about to say no—very angrily—when the list of ingredients flashes through his mind.

Eggs. Eggs are in chocolate cake! And milk! Oh goody! And wheat! That’s nutrition. Chocolate cake… coming up! Now, you need something to drink with your chocolate cake, something breakfast. Grapefruit juice! Eggs, milk, and wheat in the chocolate cake. And… I didn’t have to cook.

That is a righteous conclusion. Chocolate cake is a great breakfast. With milk for kids and coffee for adults. (And leave the grapefruit juice for anyone who complains about chocolate cake for breakfast.)

More commonly, however, I do eat mildly healthier. Breakfast lassi, for example, from yogurt and various other flavorings. But while yogurt drinks make for a fine breakfast, they’re not the only option for a drinkable breakfast. And I’m not talking about the traditional pejorative meaning of a drinkable breakfast. Although it may well have been born from just such a drink.

Eggnog. Think about it. Eggs. Eggs are in eggnog! And milk! Oh goody! That’s nutrition. Eggnog… coming up!

Preferably without grapefruit juice.

While we normally think of eggnog as a holiday drink with heavy spirits, that as the only way to make eggnog appears to be a late twentieth century interpretation. Eighteenth and nineteenth century versions used wine, fortified, yes, but nothing like brandy or rum. And from the earlier twentieth century many of my vintage recipe collections include nogs that either don’t have alcohol or don’t need it. In fact, most of the recipes that have “nog” in their title and include eggs in the recipe either don’t call for alcohol or make it optional.

If those recipes are anything to go by, eggnog used to be very popular not just for Christmas parties or even parties in general, but as a general beverage for any occasion. Or even for breakfasts or brunches without need of an occasion. The Sunkist eggnog I’ve included here is literally from a book titled “…recipes for every day”.

The earliest recipe for eggnog in my collection is in the 1916 Table and Kitchen from Dr. Price’s Cream Baking Powder. It describes its “Egg Nog” as:

  1. <- Holiday food