CACIK (for six)
Pronounced ja-jeek, this is a Persian version of a yogurt sauce popular throughout the Middle East. It sounds and tastes similar to Greek tzatziki.
4 t o 6 small cucumbers or 1 large one, diced or cut into half-moon slices
2-1/2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt, preferably Greek
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 sprigs of fresh mint, finely chopped, or 2 tablespoons dried mint, or 2 sprigs of fresh dill, finely chopped
juice of 1 lemon
½ cup chopped walnuts
3 to 4 tablespoons raisins
- Peel and dice the cucumbers, or cut them in half lengthwise, then into half-moon slices. Unless the salad is to be served immediately, sprinkle with plenty of salt and leave in a colander to drain for 1 hour.
- Beat the yogurt in the serving bowl with the garlic, mint, lemon juice and pepper. Rinse the cucumber of excess salt, drain, then mix into the yogurt, along with the walnuts and raisins. Add a little salt if necessary.
adapted from Claudia Roden, The New Book of Middle Eastern Food