Haydari is a delicious Turkish Yoghurt Dip made with feta cheese, thick strained yoghurt, fresh herbs and chopped walnuts. This tangy dip is one of the most popular mezes in Turkey and also is widely served in Turkish restaurants with kebabs and pita bread.
Why This Recipe Works?
- All you need to prepare this tasty meze dish is to gather a few ingredients and mix.
- You can serve it as a part of a meze platter, as a spread on a piece of toast for breakfast or as a dipping sauce to serve with vegetable crudités, kebabs and BBQs.
- You can make it a couple of days ahead and keep it refrigerated until you need it.
Ingredients and Substitutes
- Strained yoghurt - It is also called sack yoghurt, labneh or kerned yoghurt. You can buy them from most of the large supermarkets.
- Feta cheese - I prefer feta cheese made with sheep milk with high-fat content with a creamy texture.
- Walnuts - It adds extra texture and nuttiness to the dip but you can omit them if you prefer. Lightly toss your walnuts before using them for a more intense flavour.
- Dill - It pairs perfectly with cheese and yoghurt. You can use fresh mint alternatively.
- Garlic - Use a fresh garlic clove for this recipe. Fresh garlic is a great flavouring that adds sweetness and nuttiness to dishes. Turn it into a paste with a Mortar and Pestle or grate it using a Microplane Zester Grater. I use two large or three small fresh garlic cloves for this recipe.
- Butter - It adds extra richness and body to the dip. Gently melt it with dried mint and some chilli flakes before adding it to yoghurt. You can substitute it with EVOO.
How to Make Yoghurt Dip (Haydari)?
Making this delicious dip is very simple and straightforward. However, to achieve the best results you need to follow a few simple steps:
- Place the feta cheese in a bowl and turn it into a paste using a fork. The texture of the cheese has an effect on the texture of the dip so the creamier the cheese better is the dip.
- Add the yoghurt, garlic pure, finely chopped dill and walnuts to the bowl and mix well. You can replace the dill with mint or use both together.
- Gently heat the olive oil on low heat in a small saucepan and add the dry mint along with the chilli flakes. Allow 5 minutes to infuse the oil with mint and chilli.
- Transfer the yoghurt and feta mixture into a serving bowl and garnish with mint and chilli-infused olive oil.
Love Turkish food? Check out my other delicious traditional Turkish dishes!
You can use this tangy yoghurt dish as a dipping sauce for crudités or Homemade Pita Bread, or you can serve it with kebabs or BBQ dishes. You can also use it as a spread to make wraps or sandwiches. It also tastes great on a slice of toast for a quick breakfast.
Tzatziki or cacik in Turkish is made with natural yoghurt and contains grated cucumbers. Tzatziki is much thinner than haydari and doesn't have any feta cheese or walnuts.
Top Tip From the Chef
If you can't find thick yoghurt, you can make your own by putting normal yoghurt into a cheesecloth and waiting for a few hours until you get rid of the excess water in the yoghurt.
I hope you enjoy the process of making this delicious mezze Haydari as much as you enjoy eating it ! 🙂
Bon appétit! / Afiyet Olsun!
Haydari (Turkish Yoghurt Dip)
- 75 g feta cheese
- 200 g thick strained yoghurt
- 1 clove garlic (turned into a paste with a pinch of salt)
- 2 tablespoon fresh dill (finely chopped)
- 40 g walnut (finely chopped)
- 25 g butter (to garnish)
- ½ teaspoon dried mint
- ¼ teaspoon chilli flakes (optional) (to garnish)
- Place the feta cheese in a bowl and turn it into a paste using a fork.
- Gently melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the mint along with the chilli flakes.
- Add the yoghurt, melted butter, garlic pure, finely chopped dill, and walnuts to the bowl and mix well.
- Transfer the yoghurt and feta mixture into a serving bowl and garnish with chilli flakes or a drizzle of olive oil.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Don’t leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
See more guidelines at USDA.gov.
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