This famous yogurt and cucumber dip is eaten as a accompaniment to most Greek meals. It will liven up a plate of vegetables, roasted or grilled meats and seafood. Or served simply as a dip with bread.
I love it strong with garlic but it you prefer it more mellow reduce the garlic to one or two cloves. But it should pack a punch. The quality of yogurt will impact on the success. If you can’t get yogurt made in Greece, you will need to strain your yogurt for a few hours (through a muslin cloth) otherwise it could be runny. You don’t have to do this step and I’ve made it successfully without it, but it is recommended for an authentic result.
Here’s how. First gather your ingredients:
1 telegraph cucumber, 500g strained Greek yogurt, 3 (or 4) cloves garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar and salt.
3. Meanwhile peel and grate the garlic using a fine microplane grater (make sure you remove the green garlic shoot in the centre to avoid garlic repeating on you later). In a bowl, add 3 tsp red wine vinegar, a sprinkle of salt and 2 tbsp olive oil. Stir and leave it sit while the cucumber is doing its thing.
4. Take handfuls of the cucumber and squeeze out all the juice and place into the garlic/oil mix. Give it a good stir then add the yogurt. Mix it up and taste. You will need to add more salt (maybe up to 1 tsp) and perhaps a little more oil or vinegar to get it just right. Keep tasting. Tzatziki must be seasoned well so don’t be afraid of salt.
6. Eat and enjoy … knowing you will be safe from vampires. Will keep a few days in the fridge if you don’t eat it all.
Makes 500g, which is enough to feed a group of 10.