savoury delights

tzatziki as in athens

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My last post was a resumé about our stay in Athens – for about 5 weeks – in 2017. It was then when found the ultimate recipe for tzatziki.

Tzatziki was always one of my favored dips, but then for a start based on my experiences during our stay when I was able to do a deep dive into different versions of tzatziki and as well recreate it at our home in Athens.

So now I think it’s time to renew the post from 2017 … because tzatziki is a simple dip anytime & everywhere – even when in Southern France or Northern Spain where we are at the moment.

I remember vividly my student days when tzatziki was always on the table. Well: it was easy, cheap & w/ some fresh bread just delicious. I remember also some friends who thought they had to overdo by adding a whole garlic bulb to the yoghurt … Ouch!

I learnt also that you need some substantial basis like Greek yoghurt (10%) … something really creamy! It was never a good idea to use low fat curd cheese or domestic low fat yoghurt …

Tzatziki is simple – all you need is:

  • Greek yoghurt
  • fresh cucumber
  • fresh garlic.

We start w/ peeling, quartering, deseeding & slicing the cucumber; use a mandolin-slicer to get very thin slices. Add salt & let the cucumber rest for at least 15 min.

Add 2 – 4 cloves of garlic (peeled & pressed w/ a garlic press) to the Greek yoghurt. Don’t forget some pepper – mix well. You may add a splash of olive oil if you like.

Garlic: I prefer fresh garlic – very fresh garlic i. e. cloves of garlic w/ juicy skin i. e. the skin hasn’t dried into paper-like skin. (Of course you may use also not-so-fresh garlic – especially if there isn’t any fresh garlic available.)

Let’s resume on the garlic:

  • You may add as much pressed garlic as you like.
  • Keep in mind that garlic is more intensive i. e. aggressive the less fresh it is.
  • Cut away all brown parts of a clove of garlic – always.

Finally the sliced cucumber is ready: squeeze all the water out of the cucumber mess & add the cucumber slices to the yoghurt mix & fold in.

Almost ready.

Add some fresh or dried dill … or some fresh mint finely minced – optional!


tzatziki as in athens
Prep Time20 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
  • 150 g Greek yoghurt
  • ¼ cucumber (about 150 g raw material)
  • 2 – 4 cloves of fresh garlic (pressed)
  • salt & pepper
  • ¼ tsp dill (fresh or dried – optional)
  • ¼ tsp mint (fresh & finely minced – optional)
  • a dash of olive oil (optional)
how to:
  • Peel, quarter, deseed & chop the cucumber (best w/ a mandolin-slicer).
  • Add salt & let it rest for about 15 min.
  • Clean the cloves of garlic & press the garlic into the Greek yoghurt.
  • Add pepper & mix well.
  • optional: add a dash of olive oil.
  • Squeeze the cucumber slices to remove as much water as possible.
  • Add the cucumber to the yoghurt mix & fold in.
  • optional: Add some dried or fresh dill.
  • optional: Add some fresh mint finely minced.
Prep Time: resting time for cucumber included.
Greek yoghurt: You may substitute Greek yoghurt by sour cream (10% or 20%). Don’t use any low-fat products!
Garlic: It depends on your preference how much garlic you add. Warning: don’t overdo!!!
Serve at once or at least within the next 3 – 4 hours.
For 4 – 5 people: just double the quantities!

Is there anything left to mention?

Dreaming of the Aegean sea …