Tzatziki

Tzatziki is a staple of Greek culture. Lashings can be dolloped on perfectly caramalised spit roasted lamb or plopped on a warm slice of pita bread. Now! Not all tzatziki is created equal so here is my recipe (handed down from my Greek-chef father George) that is guaranteed to have you finishing off every dish with a side of garlicy-yoghurty-deliciousness.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pot of sheep/goat's milk yoghurt (traditional!)
  • 1 continental cucumber skin on, grated
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, crushed
  • Extra virgin 100% olive oil
  • 1/2 a lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Strain the yoghurt!
  2. The key to amazing tzatziki is the consistency of the yoghurt. It must be strained so that the whey is removed and you are left with thick, creamy yoghurt.
  3. To do this you will need a cheese straining bag, muslin cloth or piece of clean linen. Now this should be done the day before so that your yoghurt is completely separated. I normally hang my bag of yoghurt in the shower, but if you can find a way to suspend your bag in the fridge that works too.
  4. Remove all liquid from the grated cucumber by squeezing it in your hands (or in a clean tea towel). If the cucumber is too watery it will make your dip runny.
  5. Once your yoghurt is completely strained then pop it into a mixing bowl. Add in cucumber, garlic, salt, pepper, juice of half the lemon and a short glug of olive oil.
  6. Mix everything with a wooden spoon and taste. Adjust any flavours as required.
  7. Serve tzatziki in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil and an olive OR just smack it on whatever you are eating!