Zom (Yemenite Yogurt Soup)

Rinat Tzadok

20 minutes


Zom soup in white bowl with dot of harissa on top
Photo by Dave Kats.

Rinat Tzadok’s father Shlomo doesn’t know his exact birthday. He was born during his parents’ journey from Yemen to Israel in 1949. In their new home, Yemenite recipes remained an essential part of family life. Rinat, who is a baker in Tel Aviv, remembers her grandmother Miriam cooking many of those dishes in a magic little shed in her yard. 

For Yom Kippur, she made samneh, smoked clarified butter, that she infused with burned twigs and leaves. It added a campfire flavor to a warm yogurt soup called zom, which the family eats to break the fast. Today, in Israel, Rinat’s mother makes zom by mixing 9% and 5% soft white cheeses. In the U.S., Rinat recommends mixing sour cream, yogurt, and water. Serve the soup with schug and challah.

Read more about Rinat’s family on the Jewish Food Society


  • 1½ cups whole-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1½ cups sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice


  1. In a small sauce, stir together the yogurt and sour cream over medium heat. Let heat through for about 2 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the flour and salt, then slowly stream in the water until combined without any lumps.
  3. Stir the flour mixture into the yogurt mixture and cook until thickened (it should resemble raita in consistency), 10 to 12 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon, then adjust the seasoning with salt. Serve warm with kubaneh or challah.

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