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Tzatziki sauce cucumber substitute!

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Hey everybody,

I am a health nut, and I love everything that goes into Tzatziki sauce except one thing: cucumber! I was thinking that red bell pepper might be a good substitute for this. What do you guys think? Any other suggestions?

post #2 of 28

MTB, Welcome to Cheftalk,

 

Have you ever thought about using zucchini , finely grated ?

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post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by petalsandcoco View Post

MTB, Welcome to Cheftalk,

 

Have you ever thought about using zucchini , finely grated ?

I like that idea. I can't say that I've had raw zucchini beforeredface.gif. I usually just saute it with squash. 
 

 

post #4 of 28

Well I have to tell you that I am nuts about tzatziki.....

 

If you finely grate it , it has less water than a cucumber and the texture is not bad at all. I put zucchini in my salads just because it's denser than a cucumber.

 

Slice your zucchini is half and put them on a grill , drizzle with olive oil, splash of lemon juice , S & P ...heaven ! (You might as well slice a tomato while your at it) Don't have a grill ? Toss them on a sheet pan, oven, broil for a few minutes, lovely.

 

I am sure there are many things that can go in it....I was trying to match your veggie as close as I could.

 

Petals.

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Served Up
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Wine and Cheese
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Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
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post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 

Haha, I love your enthusiasm. Fortunately for me, I am cooking stuffed peppers, so your food ideas are only fueling my appetite that is soon to be satisfied! I think I'll split the tzatziki batch into two. I'll try one half with your zucchini idea and the other half with a pepper! Thanks for the help :).

post #6 of 28

Stuffed peppers eh ? Nice !

 

I am sure the color  and taste will be just great.

 

Petals.

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply
post #7 of 28

Just curious......why no cucumber? Seeds? Gas?

post #8 of 28

What is it about the cucumber that you don't like?  Sometimes if it's cut into big chunks I don't like it either.  Usually I grate it finely, toss in some salt and leave it on a sieve.  15minutes later you can ring out a lot of the water so that it doesn't make your tzatziki liquidy.  I can't think of anything that car actually replace cucumber, it's funny.  Maybe some apple?  Or better yet, celery.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #9 of 28

 

 

Since Tzatiziki is made up of Greek Yogurt with garlic, dill and mint, salt and black pepper ... perhaps, if you wish to leave out the cucumber -- one can.

 

Zucchini is another alternative ...

 

Another alternative could be:  Tyrosalata:

 

Feta cheese

olive oil

dried chili pepper finely chopped

lemon juice

bell red pepper

bell green pepper

oregano black pepper

 

Margcata.

 

post #10 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chefross View Post

Just curious......why no cucumber? Seeds? Gas?


     Quote:

Originally Posted by Koukouvagia View Post

What is it about the cucumber that you don't like?  Sometimes if it's cut into big chunks I don't like it either.  Usually I grate it finely, toss in some salt and leave it on a sieve.  15minutes later you can ring out a lot of the water so that it doesn't make your tzatziki liquidy.  I can't think of anything that car actually replace cucumber, it's funny.  Maybe some apple?  Or better yet, celery.


Cucumber, for whatever reason, just tastes awful to me. I have equated it to people who really hate cilantro. I have a friend who says if there is the smallest bit of cilantro in a dish, she can't eat it. That is how I am with cucumbers. Seriously, if I have a trace of cucumber on a bugger(even if someone put a cucumber slice on top and removed it), I'll taste it and can't eat it haha.

Apple or celery might be kind of interesting. The bagged Dole celery at my store is crisp and refreshing but not very robust; however, the celery sold by the stalk is peppery and especially good for soups. I can imagine a more peppery celery being quite good in a tzatziki sauce!

 

post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MARGCATA View Post

 

 

Since Tzatiziki is made up of Greek Yogurt with garlic, dill and mint, salt and black pepper ... perhaps, if you wish to leave out the cucumber -- one can.

 

Zucchini is another alternative ...

 

Another alternative could be:  Tyrosalata:

 

Feta cheese

olive oil

dried chili pepper finely chopped

lemon juice

bell red pepper

bell green pepper

oregano black pepper

 

Margcata.

 



Feta cheese is a wonderful idea. That way I can still stick to that greekish theme(though to be honest, I was going to make a gyro with homemade whole wheat tortillas to cut carbs--i'm pathetic). And you have now inspired me to look up tyrosalata because i'm not sure I've ever heard of it! Thanks for the post and the suggestions. I'll definitely be experimenting because of you guys.

post #12 of 28

 

@ Mtb,

 

Your welcome. Here is my traditional recipe for Classic Tyrosalata:

 

225 grams ( 1/2 pound ) feta cheese

3 tblsps extra virgin olive oil

1 medium long green pepper seeded and chopped

dried chili pepper ( 2 ) finely chopped

oregano 2 tsps.

salt and blk pep to taste

1 lemon juiced

 

Purée peppers, feta, oregano, and blk pep in blender or food processer and very slowly add the olive oil

season to taste with lemon juice and serve cold or room temperature

 

*** warm Pita and a lovely white wine from Greece or Prosecco sparkling wine from Italia

 

This is quite lovely ...

 

post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 

Margcata,

That sounds pretty boss cool.gif. I will definitely be bookmarking that! I do have a question, though. Do you rehydrate the chilis? Also, do you think red pepper flake would be a good substitute? I only ask because I have a boat load of red pepper flake haha.

 

Thanks a lot,

Pat

post #14 of 28

I've never heard of tzatsiki being used as a sauce.  It is usually served as part of a meze in Greece.

post #15 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishbel View Post

I've never heard of tzatsiki being used as a sauce.  It is usually served as part of a meze in Greece.



Around here a lot of people call it cucumber sauce. It's used mostly on gyros.

post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishbel View Post

I've never heard of tzatsiki being used as a sauce.  It is usually served as part of a meze in Greece.



Really? Tzatziki is used extensively here as an accompaniment to Greek Gyros.

Yes it is served by itself as meze in Greek restaurants as well.

post #17 of 28

We call gyros, doner kebabs here in the UK - and tzatsiki isn't used on them.

Interesting how when foods are moved from their native heath, other countries change how they are served

post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishbel View Post

We call gyros, doner kebabs here in the UK - and tzatsiki isn't used on them.

Interesting how when foods are moved from their native heath, other countries change how they are served



Oh come now, you've been to Greece.  Tzatziki is always used on gyros and souvlaki as a sauce.  But it is also served on its own as a meze, most often as a spread.  However, it is delectable when eaten with rice - that is quite common.  Around my house we use it to dip lamb or meatballs in it too.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MARGCATA View Post

 

@ Mtb,

 

Your welcome. Here is my traditional recipe for Classic Tyrosalata:

 

225 grams ( 1/2 pound ) feta cheese

3 tblsps extra virgin olive oil

1 medium long green pepper seeded and chopped

dried chili pepper ( 2 ) finely chopped

oregano 2 tsps.

salt and blk pep to taste

1 lemon juiced

 

Purée peppers, feta, oregano, and blk pep in blender or food processer and very slowly add the olive oil

season to taste with lemon juice and serve cold or room temperature

 

*** warm Pita and a lovely white wine from Greece or Prosecco sparkling wine from Italia

 

This is quite lovely ...

 


Why can't your recipe's just say "my" recipe?  Why must they always include the words traditional and classic? 

 

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #20 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Koukouvagia View Post



Oh come now, you've been to Greece.  Tzatziki is always used on gyros and souvlaki as a sauce.  But it is also served on its own as a meze, most often as a spread.  However, it is delectable when eaten with rice - that is quite common.  Around my house we use it to dip lamb or meatballs in it too.


Ahhh, great idea! Meatballs dipped in tzatziki sauce? That's protein central!

 

post #21 of 28

Yes of course you can use red cayenne flakes.

 

Have a nice Sunday. When I was in Greece, many tavern and restaurant owners, put a bowl of yogurt and cucumber as a side to rich roast lamb dishes to refreshen palate.

 

Margcata

post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishbel View Post

We call gyros, doner kebabs here in the UK - and tzatsiki isn't used on them.

Interesting how when foods are moved from their native heath, other countries change how they are served

A donair, doner kebob, __?__kabob, swarma etc. are not gyros, therefore they have diffrent sauces and or toppings.

post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by ov03 View Post

A donair, doner kebob, __?__kabob, swarma etc. are not gyros, therefore they have diffrent sauces and or toppings.

 

The word "gyro" doesn't refer to what type of meat it is, it refers to being cooked on a vertical rotisserie.  In Greece, if you buy meat that is cooked in this way  you can call it whatever you darn well please.  But it will be served with tzatziki no matter what you call it. 

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #24 of 28

I believe that someone missed the point to my post....even if I were in greece and was in a lebanese restaurant, ordering a swarma or a turkish restaurant ordering a doner or kebap, or if I were in a mexican taqueria ordering a taco al pastor I would not have tsatziki, I would have tahini, hummus, sour cream etc. (In eastern north america I would have a disgusting sweet sauce called donair sauce...yuk!). None of these dishes are of greek origin. They are regional dishes, and if the greek term for them is gyros, that still does not make them greek and therefore they do not have the greek dressing tsatziki on them.

post #25 of 28

Going back to the original question, fennel bulb might be a reasonable substitute for the crunchy freshness of cucumber.

 

mjb.

Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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post #26 of 28

Hi All;

You guys are making me hungry. I have a few things - first, what does the original poster have against cucumbers? I absolutely love them and in salad bars take nothing but cucumbers. Also, I love tzatsiki sauce on gyros but I can also see it being used as a sauce and dip for so many other things. I see one response suggested it as a dip for meatballs and this actually sounds good to me - I'll have to try it sometime.

 

Tim

post #27 of 28

jicama....

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by ov03 View Post

I believe that someone missed the point to my post....even if I were in greece and was in a lebanese restaurant, ordering a swarma or a turkish restaurant ordering a doner or kebap, or if I were in a mexican taqueria ordering a taco al pastor I would not have tsatziki, I would have tahini, hummus, sour cream etc. (In eastern north america I would have a disgusting sweet sauce called donair sauce...yuk!). None of these dishes are of greek origin. They are regional dishes, and if the greek term for them is gyros, that still does not make them greek and therefore they do not have the greek dressing tsatziki on them.

 

There is no lebanese restaurant in Greece unfortunately.  Greeks only eat greek food, or what they think is greek food.  Tzatziki is not a "greek dressing."  Most people like what they like, there is no limitation on what you can pair with tzatziki.  I like putting a dollop of tzatziki on asian-style fried rice.  Cold yogurt that accompanies a hot dish can be seen in Greece, throughout the Middle East and in India.

 

Fennel, now that's a good idea!

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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