Tzatziki sauce is probably the most popular food in Greek and Turkish gastronomy. The mixture of sweet and salty flavors and the freshness of dill and cucumber make this sauce an excellent dish to take during summer.
In this article, we will discover how to make tzatziki sauce following the traditional Greek recipe to obtain a sauce as close to the original as possible.
Tzatziki is a traditional Mediterranian East sauce originating mainly from Greece, Turkey, Cyprus and also the Balkan area. Depending on the region it has some particularities but is made mostly with the same ingredients in every country. Tzatziki's main ingredients are yogurt, cucumber, and white wine vinegar.
This sauce can be made with Thermomix or with any kitchen appliance adding all the ingredients together. However, today we will show how to make tzatziki at home following the traditional recipe:
The ingredients necessary to make an authentic Greek tzatziki sauce according to the traditional recipe are:
Although these are the ingredients that are traditionally used to make the original sauce, we can also use other substitute elements. In some other recipes, dill is substituted by mint or other spices to season the sauce.
The first step is to peel and grate the main ingredient: cucumber.
Next, place the grated cucumber in a bowl, season it with salt and pepper and also add a spoonful of white wine vinegar. Stir all the ingredients and let it rest.
It is crucial that we use good quality white wine vinegar, as it is one of the most important elements of the recipe, for it gives the tzatziki sauce its characteristic flavor.
In some recipes, the cucumber seeds are removed before grating. However, it is not necessary, especially if we cannot spend much time cooking.
Greek yogurt is another essential ingredient.
To make the sauce, put the yogurt in a vessel and add a clove of crushed garlic. The garlic can be prepared in a blender with olive oil so that it is well crushed and emulsified before adding it to the yogurt.
Next, add a tablespoon of white wine vinegar, salt, and pepper, and mix all the ingredients until well integrated.
The secret of a good traditional tzatziki sauce is that the cucumber is very dry and strained, to obtain a well integrated and creamy sauce.
To strain the cucumber, put it in a cloth and place a bowl underneath where we will pour the cucumber juice.
Next, squeeze it so that all the juice and liquid from the cucumber comes out.
The last step is to add the grated cucumber to the yogurt and mix all the ingredients. Finally, spread the chopped dill over the sauce and mix again.
Thus, we will have a tzatziki sauce very similar to the original. In order to bring freshness and creaminess to the sauce, put it in the fridge for about 20 or 30 minutes. After this time, the dish will be ready to serve as an accompaniment to most vegetable main dishes, as well as meats and salads.
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Kochilas, D. (1999). The Greek Vegetarian: More Than 100 Recipes Inspired by the Traditional Dishes and Flavors of Greece. Macmillan.