As a food editor, I’m constantly sorting through recipes that have 20-plus ingredients, a laundry list of steps and the unholiest of all, recipes within recipes. While a butternut squash and crispy leek risotto is undoubtedly delicious, it’s also a little time-consuming for a Monday night, and my preferred M.O. is much simpler: fewer ingredients, a fast cooking time and minimal cleanup.
I’ll also be the first to admit that simple cooking, while not boring, can often benefit from a little sprucing up. A sprinkle of fresh herbs or a little lemon juice can go a long way, as can flaky salt (always flaky salt).
That’s how my favorite dinner perker-upper was born. Enter the three-ingredient yogurt sauce that takes two minutes to make. It’s creamy, bright, versatile and customizable. It goes with meat, poultry, vegetables and grains; it tames spicy food and adds a welcome cooling element to anything roasted or caramelized. In its most basic form, it’s not even really a recipe. It’s just yogurt plus citrus juice plus kosher salt.
Frequently, this is what happens: I’ll think out loud about a potential dinner idea (spicy honey-roasted sweet potatoes and chickpeas?), the words yogurt sauce will be thrown into the conversation and nine times out of ten, it works its way into the final meal. My motto? There’s never, ever a bad time for yogurt sauce.