Creamy Sauce/Dressing/Dip with Dill and Capers

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

salt, pepper

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).

11 Replies to “Creamy Sauce/Dressing/Dip with Dill and Capers”

  1. I don’t use dill nearly enough especially not fresh dill. I may have to get a small pot and see if I can keep it alive for something like this.

  2. I love dill but have never been successful at growing it but it was one of the herb I was thinking of growing this year. Each year I buy a few bunches from the growers’ market and dry it. I didn’t know it freezed well. Now I know. Thanks for that. This dip with A LOT of dill and capers looks awesome! It looks like the perfect dip for a big bag of salty potato chips. Sounds like an up and coming splurge. 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for the compliments, dear friend! It would be perfect with chips, of course! Fresh dill is so much better, isn’t it? My mum always used to chop it and freeze in huge amounts (obligatory for so many Polish dishes!!!), so this is why I know it freezes well (strange because for ex. basil isn’t really good defrosted, one never knows with herbs…).
      Dill is for me among the easiest herbs to grow from seed: it sprouts quickly, grows quickly and starts only bolting in the summer when it’s really hot (I wait then for the seeds to appear, cut it down and dry it because old stalks with seed “umbrellas” are the best for pickled cucumbers!).

  3. This sounds delightful Sissi and I know I would love it because I am a huge tzatziki fan; your method is simpler though so it’s tempting me a lot! I like the switch up with the capers too which would be new in this kind of sauce for me. Lovely.

    1. Thanks a lot, Kelly. I think I could eat tzatziki every single day in my life… This is much richer (mayonnaise) but I use it as a salad dressing and as such it’s still less rich than the usual vinaigrette, for example.

  4. I like dill and use it about once a month and have to go to the market when I need it. I didn’t know that I can freeze it so I’ll now always have some for a spur of the moment recipe. Thank you for the tip!

    1. Thank you, Karen! You should grow potted dill. It’s so easy! Freezing is also a great option of course.

  5. Tzatziki is definitely one of my favourite sauces so this one would be right up there too. The capers are a wonderful addition. I’ve stopped growing dill because it bolts so quickly and then becomes unmanageable and ugly, I’ll have to revisit this decision when it’s nice enough outside to plant my herbs,

    1. Thank you, Eva. It’s strange because (compared to coriander) dill on my balcony bolts only when it’s really very hot, so I grow it from spring to autumn (I sow it several times) and try to protect it by a shade of a bigger plant (I also grow it on a less sunny balcony side). I’ve had my dill pots for the past month on my balcony and I’m sure I’ll still enjoy them without bolting until June at least.Then I’ll move to a shadier place.
      Bolted dill (and its thick woody stalks) is delicious dried in pickles: you should leave the flowers and wait for the seeds to appear, then dry it (actually in Poland no one uses “young” dill in pickled cucumbers because it doesn’t have the right strong taste).

  6. I grew up on dill as well, it must be the most used fresh herb besides parsley in Romania. I remember my grandma buying absolutely huge dill bunches at the market and she always managed to use it all up. I absolutely love it and use it very extensively as well.And I always dry the stalks with the seeds to use them when making cabbage rolls or other meaty cabbage dishes, they are perfect for that purpose.This dip looks delicious, it must be great with veggie sticks and crisp bread.

    1. Thank you so much, Adina. I’m glad to learn you use dried tough stalks and seeds with cabbage because I’ve been using them only in pickles. Thank you for the advice!

Comments are closed.