I literally grew on dill (ubiquitous in Poland, it’s even more important than parsley), but never considered it much more than just an ordinary everyday herb. In recent years I started to appreciate it as a subtly elegant sophisticated herb and using it well beyond the Polish cuisine. Luckily it happens to be cool temperature-resistant herb and on of the first I can harvest from my balcony, so the sauce you see above is one of the several dishes I’ve already prepared this spring with my own fresh dill.
Obviously dill doesn’t suit every single food product, but my list of the dishes that benefit from freshly chopped dill gets longer and longer, though I must say my beloved tzatziki is the first thing I think of when I see a bunch of dill. The sauce you see above was based on tzatziki I wanted to transform into a creamier and richer dressing for my office lunch salad. Since then I’ve been using this sauce as a finger food dip, as a sauce for fish, meat, wraps, as a dressing for different salads…. and it was perfect every single time, even simply combined with lettuce leaves. It’s creamy and rich, but light and refreshing at the same time. Now that I have my own fresh dill and since all the other ingredients are constantly in stock in my kitchen, I can prepare this sauce every time I feel like!
TIPS: Do not use dried dill here. It loses all its freshness needed in this sauce (though it’s fantastic with cucumber pickles!). Dill is one of the rare herbs which freeze quite well, so buy a big bunch, chop it and freeze it in a ziplock bag or container. Afterwards take as much as you need and put the container back into the freezer.
Don’t throw out thick dill stalks: freeze them and use in chicken stock or dry them and add to pickles.
You can skip the mayonnaise, but even with the delicious Greek yogurt the sauce will be tangy, too tangy for some uses, so experiment!
Preparation: 15 minutes
Ingredients (makes a 350 ml jar):
250 ml Greek yogurt
50 ml mayonnaise (I use low-fat Japanese Kewpie mayonnaise)
5 heaped tablespoons of chopped fresh dill
1 heaped tablespoon capers (if using capers in salt, rinse them)
1/3 long cucumber
1 garlic clove, crushed or grated
First grate the cucumber (I prefer to do it on a grater with big holes, but it’s up to you), place it in a bowl and sprinkle with salt. Put it aside for about ten minutes until the cucumber renders water.
In the meantime combine all the remaining ingredients (apart from salt which will depend on how much salt the cucumber will retain).
Squeeze well the grated cucumber and add to the sauce.
Mix well and taste to see how much salt you need and if you need it. If using as a salad dressing, add it just before serving.
This sauce keeps refrigerated for about a week (in a closed container).