This is how I’ve made my tzatziki for years. The classic simple and tasty Greek-style sauce or dip goes well with almost any meat or fish.
I also like to serve tzatziki as salad dressing. For example, simple salad consisting of iceberg lettuce and watermelon tastes heavenly when topped with a dollop of tzatziki.
Also with these Tasty Feta Burgers tzatziki is like the icing on the cake! (Or so…)
|Nutrition information||Protein||Fat||Net carbs||kcal|
|In total:||9.8 g||49.9 g||14.6 g||546 kcal|
|Per tablespoon:||0.4 g||2.3 g||0.7 g||25 kcal|
|Per 1/2 deciliter (50 ml):||1.4 g||7.1 g||2.1 g||78 kcal|
|Per 1/4 cup (60 ml):||1.6 g||8.3 g||2.4 g||91 kcal|
Tips for making the tzatziki
The most important thing is to strain the cucumber properly. If the cucumber is watery, the whole tzatziki will be watery, too runny and not very tasty. Even you strain the cucumber you should properly squeeze the extra water out of it after straining.
Another important thing: I always use extremely thick Greek yogurt (as you can see in one of the photos below), so straining the yogurt is not necessary. I recommend to use very thick yogurt, but in case you cannot find any, you should strain the runny yogurt. It’s easy — just combine and mix the grated cucumber, salt and yogurt, and let strain overnight in the fridge. It’s a good idea to line the strainer with cheesecloth if you strain also the yogurt. On the next day, scoop or pour the strained yogurt and cucumber mixture into a medium bowl, add the garlic and olive oil and mix well.
Let the tzatziki stand in the fridge for a couple of hours after adding the garlic and olive oil so that the flavors can mingle properly. Use airtight container, as the smell of the garlic is pretty strong.
But, let’s get started.
I like to use cucumber with peel because of the nice green color, fibers and nutrients. However, feel free to peel the cucumber first in case you are not that keen on cucumber peel.
In case you don’t peel the cucumber, it’s a good idea to grate the sides first to make the grating easier. The peel is quite leathery and thus not very easy to grate.
After grating the cucumber, place it together with the salt in a mesh strainer which you have placed on a large bowl.
Put in the fridge and let strain overnight.
On the next day, press the excess water out of the cucumber either with spoon…
…or by hand.
The cucumber should have lost plenty of water…
…which is now in the bowl. Discard the water, it’s really salty and thus not useful.
Place the strained cucumber with the yogurt, garlic and olive oil in a clean bowl.
Mix well with spoon so that everything is well mixed. You can taste the tzatziki and add more salt or other spices if you prefer.
Now the tzatziki is ready, though it’s a good idea to let it stand in the fridge for a few hours so that the flavors can mingle.
Tips for variation
You can add more authentic touch to this tzatziki by adding finely chopped fresh herbs like mint, dill or parsley. Personally I prefer this plain version without any herbs. I just want the main course to shine and not cover the taste with too much extra stuff.
By the way, black pepper is also a great spice for tzatziki.
Some tzatziki recipes contain vinegar or lemon juice, but since yogurt has a prominent sour note, at least my taste buds don’t need any extra acidic kick. However, if you want more sourness, please feel free to add a tablespoon or two raw organic apple cider vinegar or lemon juice.
Another great idea is to chop some pitted black — preferably Kalamata — olives and either sprinkle them on top of the tzatziki or mix them in.