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  • 2 cups plain whole milk yogurt or 1 cup Middle Eastern-style plain yogurt (for minimal effort)
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled, halved, and seeded
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus a pinch
  • 1/2 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried mint, crumbled


  • If you're using plain whole milk yogurt, line a small sieve with a coffee filter.
  • Put the yogurt in it, set it over a bowl, and refrigerate 12 hours.
  • Discard the expressed liquid and put yogurt in the bowl.
  • Grate the cucumber on the large holes of a box grater into another bowl.
  • Sprinkle with the 2 teaspoons salt and rub into the cucumber with your hands.
  • Set aside 20 minutes, then squeeze the cucumbers to express as much liquid as possible.
  • Smash the garlic, sprinkle with a generous pinch of salt, and, with the flat side of a large knife, mash and smear the mixture to a coarse paste.
  • Stir the cucumber, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, and mint into the yogurt.
  • Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
  • Yield: 1 1/4 cups

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