Friday, February 13, 2009

Quick & Easy Cucumber Raita for Tyler Florence Fridays

The beauty of Tyler Florence Fridays (besides Tyler of course!), lies in it’s flexibility; being able to make whatever recipe you want whenever you want. Busy? Traveling? Trying to eat well? Craving chocolate? Whatever your mood or weekly situation, there is a Tyler recipe for you, even if it’s just a simple sauce or condiment recipe that does not require much effort. It was a short week in Portland and we didn’t have time to do a whole lot of cooking, but I did manage to make my Mom my standard favorite, easy Turkey-Falafel Patties and needed a sauce to dress them up a bit. Cue the Cucumber Raita from Tyler's Ultimate television show. Found on the Food Network site here, it’s quick, easy and healthy. I usually throw together my own yogurt sauce for the patties, either a raita or tzatziki style, but why not give Tyler a try?!

Cucumber Raita
Tyler's Ultimate, Tyler Florence
(Makes 2 cups)

2 cups of plain unsweetened natural yogurt
juice of 1 lemon
1 English cucumber, roughly chopped
1/2 red chile, deseeded and roughly chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 turns freshly ground black pepper

Combine ingredients in a food processor and pulse 3 times to just chop up the cucumber. The raita should be nice and creamy from the yogurt but still have texture from the cucumber.

Notes/Results: Good. Tyler’s raita is basic, tasty and has a slight kick from the red chile. It was perfect with the falafel patties on a whole grain pita and it also makes a great, low-fat veggie dip. Although Tyler’s recipe did not call for it, I always salt my cucumber and let it sit for 30 minutes or so (then rinse and pat dry) and I drain my yogurt for a few hours in the fridge to remove excess liquid and keep the sauce from separating. It tastes great freshly made but as many things, it benefits from a few hours in the fridge so the flavors have time to meld. Quick and easy.

You can check out what the other TFF participants made this week and see how they liked it here at the TFF site.

Happy Aloha Friday! Have a great weekend!


  1. Mmmm! That looks delicious! I love your choice for this week, and I completely agree that the variety of available recipes to try for whatever mood or occasion makes TFF so much fun (along with looking at that Tyler pic every time you open the page) :) I am now craving falafel and fresh pita, yum!

  2. Cucumber raita is great with curries and bhajis (those Anglo-Indian fried veggie patties that I bake and flip in the oven). I like to add cumin seeds to my raita for a little extra crunch.

  3. Yum! I want the whole dinner.
    I love raita and tzatziki (my friend from India explained to me that Alexander the Great was in India and believes there was a lot of blending of recipes from that time)
    So nice to have that little hit of freshness with the falafel burger.

  4. I love falafel and just last week was thinking to making some. I've read Tyler's Cucumber Raita too and have it filled in my TODO list.

    Your presentation is wonderful!

  5. I love falafel - I haven't had it in years!

    I made a cucumber type dip last night to go with our lamb - but this version looks much better!

  6. Love raita on lamb meatballs with lots of mint and parsley. So fresh!

  7. Looks fabulous, perfect change for an appetizer. Nice choice, I must try this one!

  8. Yummy - I'm going to have to give your turkey falafel a try too- huns will be thrilled!

  9. i'll have to try both things someday. i agree about the beauty thing (of both things!), the flexibility is just so nice to have.

  10. It really looks good, so light and refreshing. I am craving summer so bad now!

  11. ooh, I have most of these ingredients, I think I will make some today :)

  12. Those pita's looks wonderful! What a great lunch this would be.

  13. That makes my mouth water! I love the combination~ Another recipe that I can't wait to try.


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