I must have planted one the strongest and fastest producing cucumber plants of all time. I’ve made enough pickles to last me all the way through next summer and now that I’m running short of mason jars (and fridge space) it’s time to put them to use in some new recipes!
I love tzatziki to use as a dip for pita bread and vegetables so I decided to put my own spin on it by adding a little heat. Friends and family often accuse me of making everything spicy and guilty as charged! I threw in some Serrano peppers that added wonderful spice and flavor. The cooling cucumber and addition of mint help to balance out the pepper making for a delightfully zesty and versatile dip.
(makes 8-10 servings)
1 large cucumber, peeled
1-2 garlic cloves
1 Serrano pepper, stem removed and cut into chunks (remove ribs and seeds for a milder taste)
2 Tbs packed fresh mint leaves
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
Juice from half a lemon
1 Tbs olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Finely grate cucumber into a large fine mesh seive. Do this over another large bowl or in the sink. Press down on the shredded cucumber to squeeze out as much liquid as possible. If you’re a little cheater pants like me you can do this in your food processor or blender, which you’re going to dirty up in the next step anyway. Chop the cucumber into chunks and process until cucumber is finely shredded. Transfer to a seive and push down to squeeze the liquid out.
Set the drained shredded cucumber aside.
Add garlic, Serrano pepper, and mint leaves to your processor or blender. Process until finely minced. Next you’ll add the cucumber back in, Greek yogurt, lemon juice, and olive oil. Process for 1 minute or until completely mixed. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides as needed. Season with salt and pepper and serve right away or cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Dip will keep for 5-7 days. Serve with pita bread, fresh vegetables, or pair with lamb.