If there were a "glue" that held Greek cuisine together, it would be this. Yes, I’m talking about that rich, creamy, and tantalizing dip knows as tzatziki! A beautiful blend of fresh products such as cucumber and dill, along with a few other extra ingredients.
A lot of people get their first taste of this delicious sauce while having a gyro or maybe some souvlaki for the first time. Or you may have had a variation of it, as there are similar versions found in many countries from Bulgaria to India.
However, one thing I think people underestimate is its versatility! This dip can be used and served for so many different occasions beyond what it is traditionally paired with.
You can have it alongside vegetables, as a spread on a sandwich, with any meat or poultry, and finally, if you’re like me – by itself with a spoon :) I mean, it is made with Greek yogurt, so it's healthy and packed with protein
It really is a fantastic supplement and will add a nice cool clean flavor boost to whatever you are cooking.
There are many different ways to make this, and each Greek swears by their version. This particular recipe comes from my family and now I’m sharing it with yours.
If you make it different, I would love to know! Send me an email and I'll put together another post to showcase all the wonderful variations people have for making their special tzatziki!
- 17 ounces plain Greek yogurt (or any strained yogurt)
- 1 cucumber peeled and grated (I find English cucumbers to be the best)
- 3 tablespoons of Greek olive oil
- 1 lemon, juice
- 1-2 teaspoon salt, to taste
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
- 1-2 teaspoons red wine vinegar, to taste
- 1 clove pressed garlic (to start, if you love garlic add more)
1. Put the Greek yogurt into a bowl, something big enough to mix in all ingredients.
2. Take peeled cucumber and grate on a plate.*Important: squeeze out all juices from cucumber BEFORE adding it to the yogurt. Tzatziki is thick, and adding the juices from the cucumber will make is watery.
3. Add olive oil, lemon, salt, pepper, dill, red wine vinegar, and garlic to cucumber-yogurt mixture.
4. Mix thoroughly
5. Let it rest. Place in refrigerator for a minimum of 2-4hrs. Preferably, overnight.
6. Serve alongside bread, meat, veggies, or whatever you like!
Notes: Making tzatziki is one of my favorite things because it’s such an organic process. Each time I make it, a little more of one ingredient is needed (sometimes more lemon and other times a bit of the cucumber juice). Remember, the resting period will change the flavor as the ingredients will come alive – so that hint of garlic will grow a bit more as it rests. Get it to a flavor you’re happy with, let it sit for a while, and taste how it changes.