Turkish spiced chicken with garlic yoghurt, cucumber and dill recipe

Serve this delicious dish with fluffy flatbread
Serve this delicious dish with fluffy flatbread - Haarala Hamilton

It’s the lemon and spices that really make this dish. It requires a bit of effort but it’s worth it for the fantastic combination of aromatic chicken with cooling yoghurt and cucumber. Serve with fluffy flatbread.


Prep time: 10 minutes, plus 2 hours marinating

Cook time: 15 minutes




  • 75ml olive oil

  • juice of 1 small lemon

  • 1½ tsp ground cumin

  • 1 tsp ground allspice

  • 1½ tsp Aleppo pepper or ½ tsp chilli flakes

  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed

  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

For the cucumber

  • 1 cucumber, about 225g

  • 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar

  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

  • 2 tbsp dill, roughly chopped

For the yoghurt

  • 5 small garlic cloves, 2 of them grated to a purée

  • 250g Greek yoghurt

  • 2½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil


  1. Mix the olive oil with the lemon juice, spices, garlic and some seasoning.

  2. Put the chicken in a dish and pour the marinade over. Cover and put in the fridge for up to 2 hours.

  3. Chop the cucumber into small cubes and mix with the oil, vinegar, lemon juice and dill; season. Don’t do this too far in advance or the cucumber becomes too soft.

  4. Add the puréed garlic to the yoghurt.

  5. Heat a griddle or frying pan until very hot. Shake off the excess marinade from the chicken. Add to the pan and cook on a high heat to get a good colour, then reduce the heat and cook, turning, until cooked through.

  6. Slice the remaining garlic cloves finely. Heat the oil in a frying pan and sauté the garlic until pale gold.

  7. Serve the chicken with some of the cucumber and a generous dollop of the garlic yoghurt spooned on the side. Drizzle the oil and garlic over the top.