YogurtYogurts is one of those foods that are both healthy and incredibly versatile. There’s plenty yogurt can do beyond smoothies and snack food. Here’s two recipes that use yogurt for a surprising (and delicious) outcome.

Pasta with Yogurt and Caramelized Onions

Adapted slightly from The Glorious Foods of Greece (William Morrow Cookbooks, 2001)

Serves 4 to 6

5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 cups coarsely chopped onions
Sea salt
1 pound tagliatelle or other fresh pasta
2 cups thick, strained Greek-style yogurt
1 cup coarsely grated kefalotyri cheese, or pecorino Romano

1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the onions. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring frequently and seasoning with salt to taste as you go, until the onions are soft and golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. As the water heats, add enough salt so that you can taste it. Add the pasta and cook until soft, not al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water. Combine the yogurt with 1/4 cup cooking water and mix well. Add more of the reserved past water as needed to get the sauce to your thickness. Drain the pasta and toss with the yogurt mixture.

3. Serve the pasta immediately, sprinkled generously with cheese and topped with caramelized onions and their juices.

4. Note: If not using thick, Greek yogurt, line a colander with cheesecloth and set over a bowl or in the sink. Add the yogurt and let drain for 2 hours before proceeding with step 1. For a treat, seek out sheep’s milk yogurt for this.

This recipe originally appeared on Food52.com: Diane Kochila’s Pasta with Yogurt and Caramelized Onions

 

Crab Cakes

 

By Becky Luigart-Stayne, Cooking Light Magazine
Ingredients:

 

  • 1 cup plain fat-free yogurt
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped sweet onion
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons egg substitute
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 20 unsalted saltine crackers, finely crushed
  • 1 pound lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided

 

Preparation:

 

  1. To prepare crab cakes, place a small sieve or colander in a 2-quart glass measure or medium bowl. Line colander with 4 layers of cheesecloth, allowing cheesecloth to extend over sides. Spoon yogurt into colander. Cover loosely with plastic wrap; refrigerate 12 hours. Spoon yogurt cheese into a bowl; discard liquid. Note: You can also use a quick-drain method for the yogurt. Spread yogurt onto several layers of paper towels, and cover with more paper towels. Let stand five minutes, and scrape into a bowl. Quick-drained yogurt isn’t as thick as yogurt that’s drained overnight, so start with a little bit less to ensure the crab mixture won’t become too watery.
  2. Combine yogurt cheese, onion, and next 10 ingredients (through crackers). Add crab; stir just until blended. Divide mixture into 12 equal portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 6 patties; cook 3 minutes per side or until lightly browned. Remove from pan; cover and keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 teaspoon oil and 6 patties.