Mast-o-Laboo is a variation on the traditional Persian dish Mast-o-Khiar, but instead of cucumber, it’s made with beetroot.
H and C both love to eat laboo and baghali beans during the winter. They are traditional street food snacks in Tehran which are sold steaming hot. The beets are boiled and neatly stacked according to size. We bought some at a stall near the Grand Bazaar when I was pregnant. They were really good!
Beetroot is traditionally used to cleanse the blood and support liver function and research has shown that because it contains a good amount of folate (vitamin B9), it can also help boost male fertility.
Folate is essential when it comes to female fertility too because it reduces homocysteine levels (an amino acid that helps blood clot). If homocysteine levels are too high there’s a chance that blood will clot too easily, which can create blockages that may cut off the placenta and cause miscarriage. This plant form of folic acid also helps a fertilised egg implant in the wall of the uterus.
I was introduced to this dish at a family gathering in Persia and I admit that I wasn’t too sure about the combination of yogurt and beetroot at first. I have since grown particularly fond of it given its health benefits.
To make Mast-o-Laboo:
2 cups of yogurt
2 medium/ large beets
A tablespoon of sugar
- Place the beetroot in a pan, add three cups of water and the sugar and cook on medium-low heat for about an hour until they soften.
- Remove the pan from heat and set aside to cool.
- Remove the skin and coarsely grate the beets using a hand grater.
- Combine the yogurt, beets and a dash of salt. Mix well. Refrigerate for a couple of hours.
Serve it cold.
If you liked this recipe, please check out my other Persian recipes here.