During our summer trip to Door County, Wisconsin I found myself walking into a soup bar on a very hot day. The place, Czarnuska Soup Bar, pulled me in with its kitchy Polish tchotchkes and hand-painted spoons. The proprietor directed us to the Bulgarian cold cucumber soup and after one bite I was obsessed; this was the yummiest summer soup I'd ever had. I soon found out that the owner used to be a member of Boris the Sprinkler, an oddball punk band from the 90s that combined the costumed madness of Gwar with the New Wave polish of Devo. If that's possible. Since I've been home I've worked on replicating the soup by cobbling together the best parts of recipes I've found. I've also been trolling Boris the Sprinkler tunes on youtube, including the above gem. You'll find my recipe below; apparently Tarator is a favorite Bulgarian first course, served instead of a salad. It's like eating tzatziki by itself, only better. It goes great with some kitchy pop punk.
Tarator - Bulgarian Cold Cucumber Soup
1 large seedless cucumber
17.6 oz (500g) container of Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
2-3 tablespoons chopped walnuts
1 bunch of fresh dill, minced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup ice cold water
Dice the cucumber and place in a colander. Season lightly with salt and let drain for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, place the yogurt in a large bowl. Mix in the oil, crushed garlic, dill, and walnuts. Whisk in the lemon juice and water to thin the mixture. Add the cucumber. Put into the refrigerator to cool, or add an ice cube to each bowl to serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.