Okay, truth be told, I love tzatziki dip and I was introduced to raita sauce a few weeks ago. One more confession: the local Whole Foods has elevated my taste because their version of tzatziki is spicy, a trait I willingly confess to. I just love spicy and savory rather than sweet and whatever. And to be a bit more on the side of a one dish dip, I added the feta cheese to my dip/sauce. Why the heck not!!??
In India, raita is used to cool the palate. Raita it is an Indian condiment that boasts regional versions, too.
As for tzatziki, this dish hails from Greece and variations are served throughout the Middle East. Savory or plain! All sorts of combinations of cucumber, lemon and fresh herbs. I love savory, remember? So I gravitate to those versions…..
Now for my version. Truth be told, I was lazy this Sunday evening. I did not feel like straining the cucumber. I wanted it on the watery side for a reason. Dip or dressing! Versatile, right? If you want this sauce thicker, please remember to sprinkle a bit of salt and drain the shredded cucumber at least 30 minutes in a strainer or cheesecloth, squeeze excess liquid and continue to directions.
1 large English cucumber, peeled and deseeded, cut in medium sized pieces
1 large fresh lemon, grated for zest, cut in half and juiced for at least 1/3 cup juice
1/3 cup each of packed mint leaves and dill stems, longer stems removed
1 or 2 large garlic cloves, smashed
1 16oz container of plain Greek yogurt
1/3 cup feta cheese, or more if you are going for a thick sauce
¼ teaspoon cayenne/ground red pepper to
Sprinkle of salt if you insist
Peel cucumber, cut ends, slice in half and half again so you can remove seeds, if any, with small spoon. Place in large food processor. Zest the lemon and add to processor, then juice the rest of the lemon directly into processor. Add 1/3 cup each of fresh dill and mint herbs, then toss in the garlic cloves. Pulse the processor until all is mixed well. Pulse again just to make sure 😊. Add the 16 oz container of Greek yogurt and pulse until all ingredients are well blended. Add in the feta cheese and pulse until the sauce is the consistency you prefer. Add the cayenne pepper to taste. Salt if you prefer, I rarely use salt so the fresh ingredients can be savored!
NOTE: cut all the ingredients in half for a smaller batch except for the cucumber, just get a smaller cuke
#Ratia #Tzatziki #FreshIngredients #DipOrDressing #SauceOrDressing