Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tzatziki


This makes a great sandwich spread or veggie and pita dip. It's a summer staple in our house.





Ingredients:
1 cucumber*
1 pint plain Greek yogurt or sour cream
Olive oil
White vinegar
Garlic powder
salt
white pepper

Peel, core, and grate/shred a cucumber. Peeling isn't necessary, but I recently learned that Mark can't abide cucumber skin. So, I peel them now.

Sprinkle with 1/4-1/2 tsp salt and let sit 5 minutes; press out the water and then put the cucumber into a medium (about 4 cups) bowl with a lid. The salt helps the water come out. And you want this drained well so you don't have runny tzatziki.

Top with a pint of plain Greek yogurt (nonfat usually; I also sometimes use sour cream and you can use any non fat, light, or full fat that you want). Add 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1/2 Tbsp white vinegar. Sprinkle garlic powder until it looks like the top of a cooked lemon meringue pie (or add 2-3 cloves pressed or minced garlic). This is just the way I learned to make it; I've never measured. Add more to taste. Add about 1/2 tsp white pepper. It's milder than black pepper and doesn't show up on the tzatziki.

*I have occasionally used a dill pickle when we're out of cucumbers. Dice it, then don't use vinegar or salt. It's not as good, it's not tzatziki, but it works.

What to do with it:
Top gyros with it
Use as a salad dressing
Serve with falafels (that's how we're having it tonight)
Serve with chicken, pork or lamb kabobs with a side of naan
Spread about 2 Tbsp into a pita bread, add a grilled chicken breast, feta, sliced tomatoes and shredded lettuce. If you have trouble opening pita pockets without shredding them, microwave one for about 20 seconds, slice off a strip 1" from the widest side, and it'll open right up.

Variations:
Add feta
Add feta, chopped kalamata olives and tomatoes, makes an even better dip for veggies and pita wedges
Add feta, olives, tomatoes, and chopped grilled chicken breast for a Greek chicken salad-- stuff into pitas with some shredded lettuce and it's an easy lunch to serve.

1 comment:

Mark said...

One of my all time favorite uses is as a dip for the crust of a gyro pizza. Gyro pizza is a good recipe to put out here at some point.