Almost Turkish Recipes

Carrot Salad with Yogurt (Yoğurtlu Havuç Salatası)

Carrot salad with yogurt is one of the greatly respected rakı companions. Although it is made at homes not so frequently, usually for big dinner parties or special occasions like New Year's eve or bayram dinners, it is a  staple meze (appetizer/starter/hors d'oeuvre) at every pub that serves rakı, especially at seafood pubs. Surprisingly carrot salad with yogurt tastes even better at sloppy pubs with crusty bread and rakı than it does at home, probably because rakı fixes every imperfection. You can have this salad/meze on the side of any grilled goods or have it on its own for lunch on hot summer days.

serves 2 to 3 people
4 cups of grated carrot
1 cup plain yogurt, preferably whole milk yogurt
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tbsp olive oil
3-4 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill or parsley
1 tbsp mayonnaise (optional)

-Heat oil in a skillet and add grated carrots. Stir until carrots are wilted.
-Mix yogurt, garlic, and salt in a bowl.
-Put carrots in a bowl and mix well with yogurt and sprinkle with dill or parsley.

note: At people's houses this meze is made with yogurt, but at pubs they sometimes use mayonnaise to thicken it up.


  1. Ahh Burcu, you've triggered memories of my trip to Istanbul last year. I had this at of the many eateries in Nevizade.

    1. Anonymous5:58 AM

      Ooo interesting.. What else could you eat with this as I guess its filling?.. Some flat bread what's your thought?..
      Many thanks

  2. Wow, I can't wait to try this. It looks just wonderful.

  3. Hah, I didn't know about the connection with alcohol. I'd love to eat it simply because it looks so delicious.

  4. This looks delicious! I can't remember whether I've commented before, but I'm enjoying the recipes - keep the vegetarian ones coming ;-) It's funny, my Turkish instructor from last year always thought vegetarianism was strange, but yet when asked she knew all sorts of vegetarian Turkish recipes and they're all over the Internet. "Side dishes," ha, no problem, I'm small!

  5. Alcohol, or no alcohol, this delicious salad sounds fantastic.

  6. This sounds really tasty. Interesting about the connection with alcohol. I have a lot of mint, so I'm looking for mint recipes to try!

  7. Interesting social background for this recipe, which sounds quite delicious.

  8. Wow, I've been wanting to try a carrot salad that was made this way for a long time!

  9. Indian cuisine has a similar carrot raita, but the garlic+dill flavours adds a whole new twist - I love it! :)

  10. Anonymous12:37 PM

    This looks tasty! Don't you love foods that taste better when you've been drinking? Chips and cheese comes to mind... that and Kraft Dinner. Oh, look. I've given myself away as an uncouth American. Oh well.

  11. Peter--Ahh Nevizade ahhh!

    vb--Thanks, vb! It tastes wonderful, too.

    Susan--Most hors d'oeuvres (or mezes) are thought as companions of alcohol. They're good by themselves, yet whenever you have them, you think hmm this is good but could have been even better with beer or raki.

    Judith--vegetarianism is not that common in Turkey, yet on the west coast you can definitely survive as a vegetarian.


    Kalyn--I have mint recipes. I should post them too.

    Simona--I'm sure Italian cuisine has recipes that go better with alcohol.

    mrs. ergul--thanks!

    Kaykat--I love raita!

    Emiglia--I'm with you. it's chips and guacamole for me :)

  12. Anonymous12:56 PM

    Looks easy to make and looks dee-lish!

  13. I came away from my last holiday in the Mediterranean with a love for raki so this salad would be a great accompaniment:D

  14. Burcu,
    This carrot dip (as I call it) was fabulous; it even got the Young Man at my place to eat dill--with no raki required (g). I blogged about my experience with your recipe, but it seems that blogger has already alerted you to that fact with a link to my post!

  15. I'm just making this Burcu. The carrots are cooling down in the pan as I type. Interesting you said it;s a good New Year's Eve dish. We're going to a party and I was wondering what our offering could be. Now I know! Thanks. :)

  16. Oh my goodness, i am blown away by your dishes. I grew up on kudhi, indian style, and have never been able to duplicate mom's recipe. Yours is fabulous and so easy. I am in heaven. I am trying the carrot salad and the yogurt spinach in the next couple days. I added splash of cumin powder, curry powder and fennel seeds to the oil with the terragon, and chicken to the rice. The energy this soup gives me is miraculous. Could it be the terragon? Thank you, hugs, flamey

  17. You can add all those things to the spinach, too. I love spinach with curry powder ;)

  18. Anonymous9:46 AM

    thanks for this recipie, I made it yesterday, it was sooo good!

  19. Anonymous3:39 AM

    I made this yesterday, but since I don't like Dill I used chopped fresh mint. Absolutely gorgeous.

  20. Anonymous11:56 AM

    This is sooo good as a kumpir topping as well... mmmm thanks for the recipe!

  21. Made this today, thanks for the recipe! I moved to Istanbul a year ago, and I love your blog because my Turkish is not quite good enough yet to follow recipes :)

  22. Dont forget to add crushed walnuts! Such a wonderfull addition to the flavors of this salade.

  23. Anonymous11:57 PM

    I make this weekly my husband loves it with pitta bread
    I batch cook portions of cooked grated carrot and freeze in portions for this purpose. Makes it less fiddly and quicker to whip up