Jajik - Armenian Cucumbers and Yogurt - Summer Soup
Vegetables and Salads

Cool and Creamy Cucumber Salad (aka Jajuk or Armenian Summer Soup)

Most, if not, all Middle Eastern cuisines have their own variation of yogurt and cucumber salad or soup. The Greeks add garlic and call it Tzatziki, the Armenians go with mint and dill and call it Jajuk. Which translates to Summer Soup. My Armenian “expert”, Jamie from I am Not the Babysitter, told me some people use more yogurt than vegetables so it is more soup like.

Jajik - Armenian Cucumbers and Yogurt - summer soup
When I posted the photo above to the FMS Photo A Day group, a wonderful fellow member, Callie Raykhonov, gave me the following information about this dish in Uzbekistan and Russia:

I make something similar that I learned in Uzbekistan (made last night in fact) and wanted to see how similar your recipe was. Quite similar but I put radishes and lots of minced garlic. And we actually add water to make it more like soup. My husband is from Bukhara where they speak Tajik and it’s called “chaka chalop” Russians add kvas (fermented bread drink) and call it “okroshka”


Your foodie lesson for the day.

The original recipe came from a college friend of my dad’s and he and mom tweaked it a little bit to make it more like a salad, which is what is listed below. If you want it more soup like, add water or kvass. Of course I might just have to search around to find some kvass to try it for myself.

This comes together quickly, but you want to make it a few hours ahead of time to let the flavors blend.

Mom likes it with leftover holiday turkey. Or you could pair it with another of my favorite Armenian recipes Monti (Manti), or just about anything else.

Armenian Manti (Monti)
 

 

Summer Soup – Cucumbers and Yogurt – Jajuk

Summer Soup (Jajuk or jajik) - Armenian cucumber and yogurt. Similar to Tzatziki, chaka chalop, okroshka.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups plain yogurt (or 1 cup greek yogurt)
  • 2 Medium cucumbers
  • 1/2 cup red onions (diced)
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint (finely minced)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • salt and white pepper to taste

Optional

  • 1/4 cup fresh dill (finely minced)

Note

This is called Summer Soup, but I have always had it as more of a salad. Do not strain the yogurt, or add water, if you want to make it more soup-like as they do in many other cultures.

Directions

If using regular yogurt: Fold cheese cloth into 6 layers and place over sieve. Place over sieve layered with cheese cloth over a bowl allowing 2 inch space below sieve to collect excess liquid without touching bottom.

Scoop yogurt into cheese cloth and wrap cheese cloth around yogurt. Cover all with plastic wrap. Allow to sit in refrigerator over night until liquid had drained from yogurt.
Scrape yogurt with rubber spatula from cheese cloth into non-metal bowl.
Peel cucumbers and cut in half lengthwise Using a teaspoon, scoop out seeds. Discard seeds. Cut each half into 6 fairly even slices lengthwise. Cut crosswise to make approximately ¼ to ½ inch dices.
Stir in remaining ingredient and let flavors meld in refrigerator for 2 or more hours. Adjust seasoning if needed

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Until next time, happy eating.
~Audrey

21 thoughts on “Cool and Creamy Cucumber Salad (aka Jajuk or Armenian Summer Soup)”

  1. I think I have had this as a salad! We are so excited that you linked up to Merry Monday this week! Sharing your post today on our MM Pinterest Board. Come back next Monday for another great party share! Party opens Sunday night! Have a great week!
    Best,
    Kim

  2. Audrey, I make tzatziki which is very similar but I have never added mint to it. My garden is bursting with mint right now, as well as cucumbers, so this will be on the menu very soon.
    Thanks for sharing this ‘oldie but goodie’ from your archives and hope to see you again this week.
    Have a great day, Lynn

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