Serves 4 to 6 as a starter
½ a large cucumber
2 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons quality extra virgin olive oil
1 x 500g tub of strained Greek yoghurt
- Slice the cucumber in half lengthways and cut or scrape out the seeds – this is where most of the water content is. Grate the remaining cucumber.
- Place the grated cucumber in a sieve, rest it on a bowl and add some sea salt. Give it a stir, and leave to drain for a few hours, or overnight in the fridge. Stir now and again, helping it along by pushing the liquid out with a spoon.
- In the meantime, peel and finely grate or crush the garlic, then combine with the oil in a large bowl. You can allow this to sit for a few hours to mellow out the pungency, but it’s not essential.
- When most of the liquid has drained from the grated cucumber, spread it out over a tea towel and pat dry. Combine with the garlic mixture, then stir through the yoghurt until evenly distributed.
- Fold the lemon juice through the yoghurt mixture. Season with salt to taste.
- Serve with warm pita or Turkish bread and crudités, or alongside salad and grilled meats.
If you want to get creative, feel free to pep up your tzatziki with paprika or sumac, or and a punch with slices of fresh chilli. Dress with a flourish of the chopped herbs and a drizzle of olive oil.