Tasty Tzatziki

Some people aren’t a fan of the cool and creamy cucumber sauce that accompanies a gyro, but I personally love anything with cucumber. Tzatziki can be used to marinate meats, as a dip, or as a sauce on yummy lamb pitas–and it’s not too hard to make either!

I decided to use Ina Garten’s recipe for it because I have her cookbook “Parties” and her recipes are always a hit. But–I didn’t check out the portion size and ended up making about 5 cups of the stuff, aka way too much for a family of four to eat. Oh well.

I made a few adjustments to the recipe: I skipped the straining yogurt step and just bought Greek yogurt, I didn’t add champagne vinegar because I didn’t have any (a splash of white vinegar was used instead), and I added fresh mint. The key to the tzatziki tasting was good was letting the flavors meld together in a cold refrigerator overnight.

I served it as a dip with toasted pita bread.


(makes 2 1/2  cups)

  • 1 pint of Greek yogurt (I prefer Fage)
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and shredded (use a peeler to take off the tough skin, slice length-wise, and remove seeds by gently carving out with a spoon)
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp. white vinegar
  • 1 lemon’s juice
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsps. minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 tsps. minced fresh dill
  • 1 tsp. minced fresh mint
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper

1. Using a food processor, grate the cucumber. While measuring other ingredients and getting stuff together, put cucumber in a strainer to drain excess water.

2. Squeeze as much water out of the cucumber as you can. Then mix everything together in a big bowl and refrigerator for a couple hours.

1 comment
  1. azdon said:

    It’s been so long since I’ve had this – but as I recall, I liked it.

    I think Ina’s great – I’ve used many of her recipes over the years, In my area, she comes on right after one of my least favorites: Giada. Most of her stuff I wouldn’t bother with, really (except for a few of her desserts) but I think it’s her demeanor that bothers me the most – she strikes me as condecending to the max, and her phony smile seems designed to let everyone know she had the $$ to get her teeth capped.

    Sorry, I’ll shut up now…

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