Tracy Lee Karner
The Way I Was

Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

Tracy Lee Karner
Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

This tastes like Tzatziki, but it’s made with American supermarket yogurt (instead of strained Greek yogurt). I threw it together in less than 10 minutes (I wasn’t timing myself, now that I think about whether I’m stretching it, I’d say it’s likely I might have tossed it all up in less than five minutes).

Tracy Lee Karner
Assemble your ingredients

You’ll need:

  • Plain Yogurt
  • Cucumber
  • Onion
  • Lemon
  • Garlic
  • Salt

As much of everything as you like–for as many people as you’re serving. I made a small bowl, about 1/4 cup onion, 1/2 cup yogurt, 1/3 cup grated cucumber and 1/2 clove garlic.

Tracy Lee Karner
Peel the cucumber, chop the onion, cut a wedge of lemon…
Tracy Lee Karner
Cucumber and onion in the bowl, with a squeeze of lemon.
Tracy Lee Karner
Chop the garlic.
Tracy Lee Karner
Add garlic to the mix.
Tracy Lee Karner
Not too much yogurt (you want this to be thick and cucumber-y).
Tracy Lee Karner
Stir, with a pinch of salt. Taste. Hmmm, what does it need?
Tracy Lee Karner
It was a little thin (maybe because I used low-fat yogurt), so I added a dollop (a scant 1/4 cup) of light sour cream. Regular sour cream would have been preferable, but this was in the fridge, so I used it up.

Okay, so it’s not authentic Tzatziki, because it’s not made with Greek goat’s milk yogurt. And while the authentic thing is great, this was great in it’s own way, too. I don’t honestly care whether food is “authentic,” as in:

“This is the only authentic cabonara. (or stroganoff,  borscht, neapolitan pizza, tamales, whatever.) This is how they originally made it.”

I care about taste.

And honestly, some of the blandest, greasiest, sourest and just-plain-yuckiest food I’ve ever eaten in my whole life has been made by the kind of people who get all huffy about authenticity, and who say things like, “You don’t know what Tzatziki is? (Implying that seventh-grade put-down, Have you been hiding under a rock?)”

In my book, what is NOT authentic, in any kitchen or cuisine, is food-snobbery. (And, it shows the opposite of what it intends to display, it shows bad taste).
This cucumber-yogurt sauce just begs for pita. And gyros. Or, just eat it out of the bowl, like soup. Why not? It’s THAT good!
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