I really love Greek food, and tzatiki is one of my favorite things to make and eat on a hot summer day! If you have never tried MAKING IT, I highly recommend that you give this recipe a try! I first discovered it in The Barefoot Contessa's "Parties!" Cookbook, and this is really delish! The recipe below is from the Food Network, and is the exact same one as in the book, except the book doubles the ingredients. In my opinion, if you are going to go to the effort to make it, definitely double the recipe. It is so yummy you will be glad you did!
While tzatiki isn't hard to make, it does take some advance planning. You have to drain the shredded cucumber and yogurt in the fridge for three or four hours before assembling, otherwise, you will end up with runny tzatziki, and you don't want that! A few things to keep in mind:
Be sure to use hothouse cucumbers (the ones that are shrink wrapped). Regular cucumbers are too bitter and watery for this recipe.
I know this sounds like alot of salt (and be sure to use Kosher! That's the only kind of salt I keep in the house!) When you drain the liquid off the cucumbers, alot of the salt will go with it, so trust me, your tzatziki will not be too salty!
Once I made the mistake of using low fat plain yogurt, and the end result was really blah. I use just regular ol' plain Dannon (not the whole milk, while I am sure that would be really good!). Of course, Greek yogurt would be especially yummy in this, but since I am
too cheap budget minded, I just stick with regular yogurt!
I use the food processor to grate the cucumbers, using the largest grater attachment. It does the job in seconds!
If you are like me and love garlic, I add a bit of extra than called for. The tzatziki is best if you serve it several hours after assembling, to let the flavors develop. It is even better the next day!
We love it with baby carrots or crackers, and it also would be great with grilled meats or thick slices of crusty bread. Ok, enough of my blabbing! On with the recipe! Please let me know if you make it, & what you think about it!
- 1 pound (1 pint) plain yogurt (whole milk or low fat)
- 1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled and seeded
- 1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 lemon)
- 1 tablespoon good olive oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh dill
- Pinch freshly ground black pepper
DirectionsPlace the yogurt in a cheesecloth or paper towel-lined sieve and set it over a bowl. Grate the cucumber and toss it with 1 tablespoon of kosher salt; place it in another sieve, and set it over another bowl. Place both bowls in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours so the yogurt and cucumber can drain.
Transfer the thickened yogurt to a large bowl. Squeeze as much liquid from the cucumber as you can and add the cucumber to the yogurt. Mix in the sour cream, vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, dill, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper. You can serve it immediately, but I prefer to allow the tzatziki to sit in the refrigerator for a few hours for the flavors to blend. Serve chilled or at room temperature.