Like many things, this salad improves dramatically depending on the quality of the ingredients. Using heirloom tomatoes, good quality olives, high-end greens, really good olive oil, etc. will take you from an everyday salad to a thing of beauty and we all want to be surrounded by beauty, don’t we?
Greek Salad (8 servings)
- ½ a large English or 2 Persian cucumbers cut lengthwise and then into half rounds
- ½ cup pitted Kalamata olives
- ½ pound tomatoes sliced into small chunks
- ½ cup sweet onions (Vidalia or Maui) sliced into thin half rounds
- 10 ounces mixed greens
- 1 cup feta crumbled (I’m partial to Israeli Feta)
- coarse salt
- 1 small shallot put in mini-chopper, chopped very fine
- juice of ¼ lemon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- pinch of pepper
- ¼ cup best quality red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 cup best quality extra virgin olive oil
Put all of the dressing ingredients in a mini-chopper. Pulse. Gradually add the olive oil. Taste for salt.
Put all of the salad ingredients in a large salad bowl. Toss the salad with half as much dressing as you think you need, then taste it and add more dressing if necessary. Add freshly ground black pepper and ½ teaspoon of crunchy sea salt. Serve immediately.
A note on olive oil and salt – there is extra virgin olive oil and then there is extra virgin olive oil. You may have noticed that most grocery stores have started to carry a wide range of olive oils. Fancy pants olive oils do taste noticeably different than cheaper ones. They are often nuttier, and more rich in flavor than lesser olive oils. Though I don’t sauté in expensive olive oil, I do splurge for salad dressing.