Doogh or die Credit: Mike Sula

Lately I’ve been in the habit of powering through the morning with what squishier types like to call a “smoothie.” This always involves bananas and some other kind of frozen fruit, an avocado when I’m nasty, some hemp powder, a pinch of salt, and a lot of full-fat active yogurt, plain, blended to gastroparesis viscosity. One glass and you’re good until second breakfast.

Then I discovered yogurt soda, aka doogh, a Persian drink made simply enough from yogurt and water. It isn’t always carbonated but two-liter bottles of Sadaf brand doogh are. They’re more or less latent yogurt geysers if you aren’t careful enough to open the caps verrrrry slowly. This is made even more perilous because you’re supposed to give the bottles a shake to get all the milk solids in proper suspension.

I’ve never understood how people can wash down a heavy Indian meal with a mango lassi, but there is a lot to be said for the digestive powers harnessed by lacto fermentation. And doogh is meant to be consumed with meats. After all, mint doogh is on the menu at Kabobi Grill,  and regular doogh is served at Noon-O-Kabab in Albany Park. And that’s where I got my bottle of “Bakhtiari-style” doogh, which is made with a combination of sheep and cow’s milk, and is how the nomads of southwestern Iran roll. Apart from all that good bacterial action, doogh’s effervescence is also what makes it a good digestif.

So drink your doogh. You can find it at Sahar International Supermarket, 4851 N Kedzie Ave. (773) 583-6098, and you’ll want to drink it fast, because yogurt soda, just like Crystal Pepsi, Coke Zero and Zamzam, starts going flat after its opened.  v