As I mentioned in some of my recent posts, the last week has been super busy – and we ended up with a little bit of a glut of veggies. One of the veggies we seemed to have an overabundance of was Cucumbers. We had like a pound of Lemon Cucumbers and another pound of regular cucumbers – far more than we would get through with just snacks or what have you. So there was only one thing to do… Make Tzatziki Dip! I still have yet another ginormous cucumber in my fridge from this week’s FFTY box as well… but I think I can manage with that one.
I normally try to take more in-process photos, but unfortunately I made this dip the night before Miss Thing’s giggle of girls came over for the Team Pool Party & Sleepover, and I was just a wee bit busy getting things together for it – so I only have the finished product photos… and barely those! I snapped a couple of pictures really quick while we were chowing down on it for dinner last night.
After spending the afternoon recovering from the Night of the Invading Teenage Girls, we had this dip along with some pita bread and sliced veggies for a light supper, and it was a big hit. Mr. Man and I already knew we liked it, but at first Miss Thing was like ‘ewwwwww… the cucumbers in the dip are going to be soggy!’ but we just did what we usually do when she does things like that and ignored her, putting some on her plate anyways – and after the first bite she was sold, too. Having a spread of sliced veggies, torn up pitas with the dip was so yummy, I think I might have to do it for a get together sometime. It was very elegant but low-key.
Mr. Man preferred to keep his veggies and dip segregated, but I stuffed mine all in a slice of pita and had it as little mini sandwiches – both ways were delicious.
The party was a big success by the way – Miss Thing says that everyone is going to be talking about it today at practice and about how kewwwwwwl she is. Which is good, because last year she had a few problems finding her feet as far as social interactions went. All but three of the girls on her team were able to attend. Of course, Miss Thing is looking forward to rubbing the party success in the face of one of the girls who wasn’t able to come. The girl has something of a queen bee mentality and has made life a little difficult for Miss Thing. I, of course, tell her to be nice. But you know how teenage girls are… DRAHMAH! Hopefully it will work out and Miss Queen Bee and Miss Thing will take things gracefully and be a little nicer. Riiiiiight.
Anyways, back to the dip. Making the dip is dead easy, but it does require a little bit of planning. I started the dip the night before, and finished it in the morning – leaving the yogurt and cucumbers to drain overnight. If you’re in a hurry, you can get by with an hour or two of draining, although you’ll really get the best results with overnight. I’ve made it both ways, and both are good, but the one that was drained overnight was much better.
**Some quick notes - I used Whole Milk Yogurt. I’m not really sure how low or non Fat would work, so if you try it, YMMV. I also took the sprigs of Mint and Parsley and Blanched them before adding to the dip so that they would keep their bright color. I saw the tip on another website and durned if I can find it at the moment. It’s not a neccessary step though, so you can skip it if pressed for time or what have you.
- 3 cups of Plain Yogurt**
- 2 cups Shredded Cucumber
- 4 cloves Garlic; minced
- 2 tbs Fresh Mint,** blanched and finely chopped
- 2 tbs Fresh Italian Parsley,** blanched and finely chopped
- Kosher Salt
- The night before (recommended) or 2 hours before you assemble the dip, line a fine mesh sieve with a flour sack towel, paper towel or cheese cloth.
- Pour the yogurt in to the lined sieve and set over a bowl to drain for 2 hours or overnight
- Take the Shredded Cucumber and toss with several generous pinches of Kosher Salt (1-2 tsps)
- Place the Cucumber in another sieve or strainer over a bowl and allow to drain for 2 hours or overnight
- When ready to assemble
- Blanch the herbs, if desired
- Place the minced garlic in a dry skillet and gently heat over medium low for 30 seconds to 1 minute to remove raw bite, if desired. (optional step)
- Rinse the the excess salt from the Cucumbers
- Use paper towels or a flour sack towel and squeeze the remaining excess moisture from the cucumbers. For the best texture, try to remove as much moisture as you can. (May require several towels – I used three pretty absorbant cloth towels)
- Place the cucumbers in a bowl.
- Add the Strained Yogurt, minced herbs and garlic.
- Stir to combine.
- Add Kosher Salt to taste