Tzatziki Sauce

I have a soft spot for Tzatziki sauce; it's such a good sauce or dip and also has the excellent feature of being amazingly healthy. Most sauces? Not so much. But tzatziki has a base of plain greek yogurt and cucumbers. That’s right, cucumbers. It doesn’t get much healthier than that!

I like to use it as a dip for veggies, eat it on top of zucchini pancakes (so much better than they sound), eat it as a topping on almost any meat, and of course dip pita bread in it .One of my family’s favourite meals is “Tzatiziki bowls” – basically a make-your-own situation with rice, greek salad, chopped up BBQ or rotisserie chicken, olives (if you are in to that kind of thing) and then cover it all with tzatziki and devour! And you will, because it’s so good and SO good for you.

Side note (sorry about all the rambling I promise I will eventually get to the cooking) Tzatiki bowls are an awesome meal when you are serving company with all their various special diets.The gluten free folks leave out the rice, the vegetarians leave out the chicken, the olive haters (go team!) leave out the olives and everybody still has a pretty spectacular meal.

Since I am all about slathering tzatziki on everything I figured I should really learn how to make it myself. Cucumber season is upon us so I have been playing with recipes....it turns out my sister was right – it. is. so. easy.

Start by peeling a fresh field cuc and slicing it in half.

I used a grapefruit spoon (a spoon with a serrated edge fantastic for prepping squash, peppers and most likely even grapefruit) to scoop out the seeds from the centre of the cuc. There is nothing wrong with cucumber seeds – but for this recipe we are trying to avoid all the cuc juice. (ha! Cuc juice!) so our sauce isn’t too runny.

Scoop away the seeds, then grate the rest of the cuc and put it in a colander or sieve. Add ¼ tsp of salt and stir. The salt helps brings out the cuc juice (still giggling over that for some reason) so set it aside for 15 minutes at least and let the salt do it’s magic.

Look at all that cuc juice! Use the back of a spoon or a spatula to gently push more of the moisture out through the strainer and then we are good to go.

Next measure 2 cups of plain greek yogurt and add to that 1 TBSP of minced garlic, 2 TBSP of lemon juice, 1 TBSP of dried dill, ½ tsp of salt, and the grated cucumber.

Stir.

Then the hard part – cover it and put it back in the fridge. It needs time to let all that goodness meld together to become not just cucmubers and yogurt – but tzatziki sauce.

It’s hard to wait! Sometimes I’m not that organized and there has been at least one occasion when I have served this to my company about 5 minutes after I finished it. It was still great, but a little time will make it even greater.

Opa! Happy Dipping

Leah

Tzatziki Sauce

Prep Time: 15 minutes active

Cook Time: none

Servings: approx. 3

Ingredients:

  • 1 fresh from the field cucumber
  • 2 cups plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp dried dill
  • 3/4 tsp salt (divided)

Instructions:

  1. Peel cucumber and slice in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and pulp
  2. Grate the cucumber and add to colander with ¼ tsp salt. Stir. Set colander in another bowl and set aside to drain for at least 15 minutes
  3. Stir together all remaining ingredients and let meld for up to 24 hours.
  4. Enjoy!

 

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