Showing Afghan food culture

Recipe: Fresh and silky Afghan tomato and yogurt soup, Karhu/Shorwa-E-Lawang

This appetizing soup comes from Afghanistan’s southeast. Dairy farming is the predominant way of life in this area, and the food reflects that lifestyle.


Courtesy of Embassy of Afghanistan, Tokyo

KARHU/SHORWA-E-LAWANG (Yogurt Soup with Tomatoes)



  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 4 tablespoons margarine
  • 3 medium tomatoes, skinned and chopped
  • 2 cups yogurt
  •  2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  •  Salt (to taste)



1) Drain yogurt in cheesecloth or muslin bag for about an hour. This is called “chaka” in Afghanistan and it’s preferred for cooking because, unlike ordinary yogurt, it will not impart any acidic or sour taste to a dish.

2) Fry the garlic in the margarine until brown. Add the tomatoes and stir until reddish-brown.

3) Blend the strained yogurt, 1 cup water, the flour, turmeric and salt, either by hand or in a mixer. Then slowly add to the garlic and tomato mixture. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer gently until the soup thickens, about 30 minutes.


Edited by Rika Sakai & Robert Sakai-Irvine