Israeli salad, Shirazi salad, chopped salad… you can call it whatever you’d like. Regardless, this ethnic staple is an amazingly healthful and refreshing dish. Something inspired me this weekend to put on my apron (not actually) and get cooking, so what better place to start than the Middle East? I made this chopped vegetable salad along with a tahini dressing, and roasted butternut squash dish out of pure inspiration, and wow did they turn out amazing. The great thing about these recipes is that you don’t need to be a chef. Honestly, all you need to do is follow the simple instructions and yours is sure to turn out picture perfect too.
For the sake of consistency I’m going to call this an Israeli salad. When dressing the salad a high quality olive oil is key. I always say that the quality of your meal is dependent on the type of oil you use. Believe it or not, olive oils have a very distinct taste and it’s easy to tell the difference between a high quality oil against a cheaper version. Make sure you are using an extra virgin olive oil and keeping it in a cool, dark place away from your stove.
OK- so back to the salad. Aside from the delectable flavors going on, the nutritional profile isn’t too shabby either. Cucumbers, tomatoes, and onion are among some of the most healthful, antibacterial, and hydrating foods yet. Cucumbers pack a crunch and are 96% water, tomatoes have a creamy mouthfeel with a burst of juicy flavor, and onions are rich in phytonutrients and disease-fighting properties. Mixing these nutritional powerhouses with a dash of lime, olive oil, salt, pepper, and cilantro make for one of the most delicious salad or veggie dishes on the table.
- 1 European or Persian Cucumber
- 3 Tomatoes, large and juicy
- 1 Red Onion
- 1 bunch Cilantro
- 4 Limes
- ¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Maldon Sea Salt
- Ground Pepper
- Chop the cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, and cilantro into bite-sized pieces and place in a bowl.
- Pour in the lime juice, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. Mix thoroughly.
- Garnish with cilantro and serve immediately.