My mother used to serve tzatziki in a simple and wonderful version: small cubes of cucumbers, mixed in yogurt with garlic and salt – they called it Tnuva Danube back then (today it is called Greek yogurt). I also add to the cacik – sorry, tzatziki! – dried mint, as they do in Turkish cuisine, and isot, which is also called Urfa Biber pepper – Turkish paprika with a slightly smokey taste. In Turkey it is customary to peel the cucumbers before cutting, I prefer them unpeeled, as the Greeks do.
Ingredients for Tzatziki
- 1.1 lbs (500 grams) natural yogurt 10% Greek
- 5-6 cucumbers as thin, hard and crunchy as possible
- 2 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 2-3 tablespoons dill chopped
- 2-3 tablespoons dried mint (optional)
- 1 tablespoon coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon isot or Urfa Biber pepper (can be replaced with Moroccan sweet paprika)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried mint
1. Cut the cucumbers lengthwise. Finely chop vertically and place in a large mixing bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Place in a serving bowl, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour (optional).
2. Serving: Pour olive oil over the mixture and sprinkle with dried mint and isot. Serve immediately.