Monday, 27 October 2008

Yogurt --> Tzatsiki

A couple of people who commented on my previous post about my unexpectedly successful yogurt-making also mentioned their fondness for the Green cucumber dip made with yogurt called tzatsiki. I've been making this stuff for years - usually on a Friday night when it doesn't matter if I smell a bit garlicky for a day or two. I got the recipe from a Frugal Gourmet cookbook, but I have modified it somewhat since then, so I don't think I'm breaking copyright if I post my version:
  • 1 cup thick plain yogurt - (called "Baltic Style" here)
  • 1/2 cucumber, grated (I use the largest grating surface on my cheese grater), with the liquid squeezed out. ( I just drink the squeezed out cucumber juice - it's refreshing!)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (approximately - sometimes I add a bit more)
  • 1 clove garlic - finely grated or squeezed through a garlic press
  • 1/2 lemon's worth of fresh-squeezed lemon juice (bottled is also fine, but fresh is more tasty)
  • 1/4 tsp salt, or you can leave it out entirely.
Mix all these things together and taste. You may wish to adjust a few things to your liking, but I'd hold off on adding any more garlic right away, because the flavor intensifies with time. I find that this recipe gives me enough flavor to be tasty immediately, but doesn't become too much when I eat the second half the next day. Serve with pita bread wedges that have been brushed lightly with olive oil and grilled to your liking. Mmm!

Be sure anyone you plan to kiss in the next couple of days doesn't have a garlic aversion!


EJ said...

By letting the yogurt strain for a few hours through a coffee filter or cheesecloth you separate the whey from the firmer yogurt. The whey can be used as the liquid in making bread, the yogurt can be used either sweet or savory. For sweet I add a drop of vanilla, some lemon zest, a touch of honey. Makes a great whipped cream or ice cream replacement. Savory I add garlic and herb salt.

Theresa said...

I will certainly be trying some sweet and savory variations, now that I know I can actually make the stuff - thanks for these tasty suggestions!

::::wifemothermaniac:::: said...

something similar they use as a condiment in India is raita which is nice and cool with spicy curry dishes, mmmmm!