Saturday, June 4, 2016


     Turkish Cucumber Salad ... Or Soup!
     Today's Turkish style cucumber, yogurt and mint salad is very refreshing during the hot summer months.  Turkish Cacik is like Greek Tzatziki.  The difference is that the consistency of Cacik can be thin, thick, coarse or smooth.  The consistency of Tsatziki is like a smooth sauce that easily coats a spoon.
     Cacik can be served thin like a smooth or chunky soup.  Cacik can also be made with large pieces of cucumber and served like a "soupy" salad.  Cacik can even be served as dip for bread.  No matter how it is served, Cacik provides relief from the heat!

     This recipe yields 1 large portion that can be shared by two guests.  
     For this recipe, the seeds and pulp are left on the cucumber.  The watery seed pulp adds to the refreshing qualities of Cacik.  
     A food processor can be used to puree the cucumber and mint, if a smooth texture is preferred.
     Step 1:  Place 2 cups of finely chopped peeled cucumber in a mixing bowl.
     Add 2 minced garlic cloves.
     Step 2:  Add enough goat milk yogurt (Greek Yogurt) to generously coat the chopped cucumber.  (About 1 1/4 cups.)
     Step 3:  Add 3 tablespoons of finely chopped mint.
     Add 2 to 3 pinches of sea salt.
     Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  (Use a good aromatic olive oil!)
     Stir the ingredients together.
     Step 4:  Add enough water to thin the yogurt to the consistency of milk or cream.  (About 3 tablespoons to 1/4 cup.)
     Step 5:  Place the Cacik in a container.
     Chill to 41ºF in a refrigerator.
     Stir before serving.

     This meze presentation is nice for a multi-course meal.    
     Step 1:  Place the Cacik into a shallow boat serving dish.
     Garnish the rim of the dish with mixed baby lettuce leaves.
     Step 2:  Set the Cacik dish on an oval serving platter.
     Heat some pita bread in an oven.
     Cut the pita bread into small triangles.
     Place the pita bread triangles next to the dish of cacik on the platter.

     Cacik is so satisfying on a hot day, that one cannot help but to say "I gotta have more of this!" 

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