ffwd: tzatziki

Meze Lunch

I love all the ingredients in this yogurt-cucumber dip and though I recognized the recipe’s name, I somehow never had this before. Cucumbers are in their prime (we got 6 from our CSA share this week), so the French Fridays with Dorie choice this week of tzatziki was perfectly seasonal.

After a week of family visiting and many delicious shared meals, I’ll admit, I’m happy to cooking and eating at home again. Living hundreds of miles from immediate family, I welcome our mid-Atlantic tours to see everyone, but I miss my own bed and kitchen. The highlight of the trip was a Red Sox victory at Camden Yards against the Orioles. Red Sox Nation was well-represented in the park that night, even if I was surrounded by my own family, rooting for the Orioles. And, even though, Howard and I aren’t fans of the beach, it was reassuring to see with our own eyes, the ongoing recovery on Long Beach Island after the Hurricane Sandy’s devastation last fall while we spent a few lazy and enjoyable days with my in-laws.

My Family: Pre-Game in Baltimore

My Family: Pre-Game in Baltimore

You have to plan ahead a few hours for this one. Finely chopped cucumbers are tossed with salt, allowed to sit for half an hour to draw the water out, and then squeezed tight to dry them. I’m always amazed how much water comes out of certain vegetables with this treatment. I made these delicious zucchini fritters last week, and I similarly marveled at the quantity of water released by the salt. With the cukes, the white flesh took on a translucent pale green color which was surprising.

Green Cucumber

While the cucumbers are dehydrating, I mixed together Greek yogurt, minced garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, chopped dill and mint. The squeezed and now-less-watery cucumbers are stirred in.

Initially, the dip was quite spicy. This must have been the garlic because there aren’t any spicy ingredients. After a night in the refrigerator, the garlic bite mellowed, and my tzatziki was had a much smoother taste.

I served tzatziki as part of a meze platter for lunch. Tzatziki, hummus, tomato-basil salad, falafels (made from chickpea flour leftover from the socca) and slices of country bread. It was light, cool, and screamed of summer. I’m happy to have discovered this recipe, and I’ll definitely be making this one again.

We don’t post the recipes, but you can find it in Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table. To see what other Doristas thought of this recipe, check out their posts here.


Posted on 2 August 2013, in Family, French Fridays with Dorie, Summer CSA and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Mezze platters are so nice for a casual weekend or weeknight meal.
    Glad you had a great trip!

  2. The good thing about tzatziki is that the ingredients can be added according to taste. I like mine with little garlic and a lot of herbs. I agree with you, about how nice it is to travel and how great it is to come back! I love the rest of the things you served this with Betsy!

  3. I love your holiday snap! My family came to visit me this week. Glad you enjoyed the tzatziki.

  4. that’s how I feel after visiting family, since we live quite a ways from ours as well,… glad to be back in our own kitchen and beds! :)

    something that you make where the taste matures with time is always a dish worth enjoying! :)

  5. Betsy, your tzatziki lokks wonderful ad fresh and just perfect for this time of year! And what a lovely family picture this is! So nice to read that you got to spend some time with your family!
    Enjoy your weekend (back home)!

  6. How fun! Family vacation and a ballgame – can’t remember the last time we did that. The meze platter is a terrific idea for this. Anxious to hear about the IFBC conference – it looks so interesting.

  7. A mezze platter is one of my favorite meals, and yours sounds excellent. Thanks for the zucchini fritters recipe link. I’m always looking for ways to use up squash.

  8. Great idea to make falafel with the leftover chickpea flour… sounds like a wonderful lunch… no comment from this New Yorker on the Red Soxs,

  9. I hear you on the traveling…we had a lovely time 10 hours north in Wisconsin, but it was marvelous to sleep in my own bed again. So glad you enjoyed this one…sounds like one terrific lunch :)

  10. I was marveling at the cucumber squeeze too. A worthwhile step for sure!

  11. Great job on that tzatziki but I really enjoyed hearing about your travels. My son is now a die hard Sox fan and can not wait to get back to his beloved Boston for school later this month (where did the summer go ??) Not sure if I am making the trip or if only hubby is taking him and all his “stuff”. As long as he brings me back a Neopolitan cannoli from Mike’s Pastry I will be ok. And Baltimore is such a fun city. I have employees there and enjoy whenever I get a chance to go and visit them. Work is ok but the meals are always fabulous :) Enjoy being home again and the remainder of our lazy days of summer. I personally love the Fall best and can’t wait for it to arrive ~Tricia

  12. I love the sounds of your Meze platter! Delicious! I only used two garlic cloves in mine and I thought the bite was a bit much…next time…less garlic.

  13. Sounds like the best lunch ever. My favorite way to eat actually. I just got around to this for our make up week and so glad I did. For all the great ways to eat this for me the best was to just eat it out of the bowl with a spoon. Couldn’t help myself.

  14. Your meze plate sounds delish! This is such a versatile recipe.

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