One great thing about traveling is trying the local food. During our visit to Athens in Greece last year we were wandering through the Plaka area and came across Scholarhio Ouzeri Kouklis, a small traditional family restaurant. While perusing the menu we saw that chef Rick Stein recommended the restaurant and that sealed it for me. Rick Stein is one of my favorite celebrity chefs, and we decided to follow in his footsteps.
This is one of the restaurant owners. He brought out a tray of all their offerings, and we were able to choose five different dishes. Our meal also came with a glass of wine or beer, bread, mineral water and a dessert.
Hubby went into the kitchen and took a close up of all the dishes.
I loved the food. If I concentrate I can recall the intense flavors and textures. It was one of the most memorable meals we’ve had recently. See my frown of concentration? My brain is saying, Yummy food! Yummy food!
One of the dishes we selected was Tsatsiki, a yoghurt dip that some of you have probably eaten. We’ve made it before at home, but it never tasted like this—thick and creamy and full of flavor.
When we arrived home we decided we’d try again to make some in the hope of duplicating the dish we had in the Plaka. After discussion we decided we’d amend our recipe to make our Tsatsiki thicker.
Recipe for Tsatsiki
ground black pepper
one large tub of natural yoghurt, preferably Greek
4 Tablespoons chopped mint
1 garlic clove, crushed.
1. Our Greek yoghurt isn’t as thick as it is in Greece, so the first thing we do is to drain some of the liquid out of the yoghurt. We use a coffee filter and a funnel and sit it in a beer mug until some of the liquid drains out. About 1 – 2 hours should do it.
2. Deseed the cucumber and discard the seeds. Cube the cucumber flesh.
3. Mix the cucumber with the drained yoghurt. Add chopped mint leaves and crushed garlic and salt and pepper to taste.
4. Place in a shallow dish and serve with chunks of fresh bread. Perfect with drinks on a hot day.
Do you have memories of a particularly delicious meal?