• 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 cup pickled cucumbers, cubed
  • 2 cups labneh (or strained natural yogurt)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 2 tbsp walnuts, finely chopped

Trakiiska salad is enjoyed by Bulgarians in the warm summer cities along the Black Sea coast. It is a basic recipe of yogurt salad often compared to or mistaken for Snejanka salad. Trakiiska salad uses pickles and is therefore more sour and refreshing in taste. Bulgarians typically prepare it thick and creamy by using yogurt that was strained from its water for 5-6 hours in a piece of cheesecloth. Same result can be achieved using ready-made labneh.

Directions

  1. Chop the dill and mix with the crushed garlic cloves in a bowl.
  2. Finely chop in small cubes the pickles and add in the bowl.
  3. Add the strained yogurt or labneh and mix in the olive oil. Then add the vinegar and stir again.
  4. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste, stir.
  5. Use raw walnuts or for a different taste try roasting them first. Chop them finely and add to the yogurt mix. Stir well.

Serve this yogurt salad as accompaniment to a heartwarming stew, or simply use it as a dip for vegetables or appetizer with crispy bread croutons. And why not try it in the summer with a glass of ice-cold Mastika (Bulgarian version of Ouzo).