Friday, August 1, 2008


We had Greek food last night and I decided to make tzatziki. I called up my mom to ask her how she usually makes it. She mentioned the option of sour cream, which is just blasphemy. I read a tip online about how to thicken up the yoghurt and it worked really well. So here's how I made tzatziki:

English cucumber

1. The yoghurt: Drain some water off of the yoghurt by placing one coffee filter inside another and then scooping some yoghurt into the filters. I have very small filters, so I used 4 total. Place the filters with yoghurt into a collander and then set the colander in or over a bowl. Put the whole contraption into the refrigerator for at least two hours. There should be water in the bowl and the yoghurt should have thickened. I think I started with about 2 cups of yoghurt.

2. The cucumber: Peel the cucumber then cut it in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds using a spoon. Shred the cuke (this was so fast with the food processor). Using a dish towel (I use a surgical sponge) wring out all the water from the cucumber. This was always my job when my mom made tztz. I'd keep asking her if I'd squeezed it enough, and she'd say no 4 or 5 times. So yesterday, each time I thought I had drained enough water off of the cucumbers I would set them aside and go do something else. Then I would come back and squeeze them some more. I did this at least 4 times. My point--the first time you think you've squeezed all the water out, you haven't. Try again. It is phenomenal how much water can come out of one cucumber.

3. The garlic: My mom said to grate the garlic, but to save my nails and knuckles (I had a premonition) I diced the garlic very very finely. I resisted the urge to use 4 cloves of garlic and only used one.

4. Putting it all together: Mix the thickened yoghurt, squeezed cucumber and diced garlic in a small bowl. Add juice of half of one lime and salt and pepper to taste. Stir it all up and you are done!

It was really tasty. I'm sure it will be stronger today. I tried to take a photo, but it just looks like a white lump.... Oh, and I don't know why, but I insist on spelling yogurt with an "h."

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