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Easy Summer Recipes: Mediterranean Cucumber Salad (cacık)

Updated on August 3, 2012
5 stars from 2 ratings of Cac?k


Cacık (pronounced "ja-juk") is a common appetizer, or meze , in Turkey - and most other Mediterranean countries. It's simple to make and very conducive to leftovers, not only keeping well but deepening in flavor over the course of a few days. Going on a picnic, or to a barbaque? Cacık is fantastic on its own, as a side dish, or as a sauce for anything from chicken to quesedillas.

Best of all, it's great for helpful children (lots of stirring) and busy folks of all ages (takes a maximum of 10 minutes, and only 5 if you've got a garlic press).

And as you can see, even my cat comes running when cacık is on the menu.

Although of course she can't have any. Dairy makes her unsociably stinky.

Yes, I buy mint in bulk.
Yes, I buy mint in bulk. | Source

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Ready in: 15 min
Yields: A big bowl of refreshing deliciousness


  • süzme yoğurt/greek or, chilled
  • cucumbers, corsely chopped
  • to taste mint, dried or fresh
  • to taste sea salt, coarse (table salt is fine, if that's all you've got)
  • to taste garlic, pressed, or diced and smooshed

Startlingly Simple

  1. Decant as much yogurt as you like. About half a cup per person if you'll be using the cacık as a side dish or dip. A cup per person if it's more of a main event. NOTE: If you want more of a soupy dish, you can dilute the yogurt with water. Add a tablespoon at a time until you have the consistency you want.
  2. Wash the cucumbers and chop coarsely. You can leave the skin - it's pretty and nutritious. (Just make sure it's well washed). Add to the yogurt.
  3. Crush your garlic and add it and your chosen spices (mint, salt) to the bowl of cucumber and yogurt.
  4. Mix it all together!
  5. Ta DA. You can let it sit in the fridge for a few hours, or serve directly. The garlic etc. will get a little bit stronger if you let it sit.


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    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 5 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Hmmm. I'll bet this makes a good dip! Thanks for sharing!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Simple but delicious! Thanks for sharing.

    • buckleupdorothy profile image

      buckleupdorothy 5 years ago from Istanbul, Turkey

      Thanks you two! It certainly does make a great dip - I love it on spicy quesedillas.

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

      I love this dish but have always called it tzatiki. I know a lot of the countries have similar dishes and call them different names. This makes my mouth water! Voted up and everything but funny!

    • buckleupdorothy profile image

      buckleupdorothy 4 years ago from Istanbul, Turkey

      Hey Vespa! Yes, this dish is common all across the erstwhile Ottoman Empire - and always a winner. Really crazy hard to mess up.

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Wow! That does sound simple.Cool and refreshing. I am going to try this one hot day soon.

    • buckleupdorothy profile image

      buckleupdorothy 4 years ago from Istanbul, Turkey

      It's a summer staple in our house, when the heat makes you shun anything even remotely heavy. I hope you like it!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I like the sound of this recipe, buckleupdorothy! It looks like it's very tasty yet simple to make. I'll try it soon.

    • Om Paramapoonya profile image

      Om Paramapoonya 4 years ago

      Sounds very simple and healthy. I like it! And by the way, your cat is very cute! =D

    • buckleupdorothy profile image

      buckleupdorothy 4 years ago from Istanbul, Turkey

      Aw, thank you Om - she sure is. A little clumsy in the heat though: she fell out the window a couple days ago! And all she got for her troubles was a scratch on the nose...

    • Global-Chica profile image

      Anna 4 years ago from New York, NY

      Mmmm this looks really good and refreshing! Definitely going to give this a try.

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