Tzatziki aye? That yogurty delight commonly found on your falafel or gyros? That’s right, it’s a traditional Mediterranean mezza side dish. Mezza are the small plates that accompany your main dish, they can be anything from fresh and/or pickled vegetables, dips like hummus or baba ghanoush, and fried or baked breads. It’s similar to Banchan in Korean culture where you can find kimchi, japchae, and various other marinated/pickled veggies, fish cakes, so on. All that you really need to know is that they’re one of the best things that ancient cultures have offered to food in all of history. It pairs well with a multitude of of dishes as either a dip or a sauce, and it’s very similar to the Indian dip/sauce raita which is done with toasted or fried cumin and mustard seeds. It’s very simple to make, it takes less than fifteen minutes to finish, and could just be that missing component of your grilled sandwich with feta and green olives. Just saying. . .
- 1qt – Greek Yogurt
- 1 – Garlic Clove, Minced
- 1tbsp – Salt + 2tbsp more
- 2 – Lemons, Juiced and one of them zested
- 1/4cup – Fresh Dill, Minced
- 2tbs – Cold Pressed Olive Oil
- 3 – Persian Cucumbers, 1/4″ Diced (you want about 3/4cup)
- 2tsp – Ground White Pepper
- In food processor or blender combine the following – yogurt, garlic, 1tbsp salt, lemon juice – pulse for 20 seconds until garlic is thoroughly blended
- Dice cucumbers and place in a strainer over a bowl, sprinkle with the 2tbsp of salt , stir and let sit for about 10 minutes. Squeeze out the juice and taste, if too salty sprinkle with some cold water and squeeze again, but don’t mash.
- Pour the yogurt into a mixing bowl and fold in the dill, cucumber, white pepper and salt if needed, as well as half of the lemon zest
- When serving sprinkle a little olive oil and the remaining lemon zest with a little mince of dill