Easy, Delicious & Healthy-Authentic Greek Cucumber Salad Recipe
Delicious, Easy and Healthy
Mediterranean Diet Food
Summer is almost here and you know what that means...picnics, barbeques and get-togethers! Wouldn't you love to bring something different this year. Most people think of potato salad, macaroni salad or coleslaw when they think of picnic salads. This year think Greek salad.
Greek salad is wonderfully refreshing and healthy. It can withstand sitting out for several hours without going bad. In fact, the longer it sits, the better it tastes. This is one salad that is actually better at room temperature. And it is healthy! All your friends who are dieting will love you when you arrive with this salad.
I love this recipe. It was given to me by a friend many years ago. This is an authentic Greek salad, and contains no lettuce. This is true Mediterranean fare! The Mediterranean diet is a healthy diet that tastes great. Greek salad is even better the second day. Try this recipe and you will agree...healthy eating can be delicious!
You can leave out the feta cheese if you prefer vegetarian. It tastes great either way.
Get In the Mood! Watch these clips from my favorite Greek movie.
1 pint of Grape Tomatoes
1 Green Pepper
1 Small Red Onion
1 cup Kalamata Olives
8 oz Chunk of Feta Cheese
2 tablespoons of Fresh Lemon Juice
2 tablespoons of Vinegar
1 teaspoon of Oregano
2 teaspoons of Parsley
1 teaspoon of Salt
1/2 teaspoon of Pepper
1/2 cup of Olive Oil
Prepare the Vegetables, Olive and Cheese
If you use cherry tomatoes, cut them in half. You can also cut the grape tomatoes in half if you like. I don't cut the grape tomatoes. Place the tomatoes in a large bowl.
Peel and seed the cucumber. You can eliminate the seeding if you use an English cucumber. Cut the cucumber in half length-wise, then slice 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. Put the cucumber in the same bowl as the tomatoes.
Cut the green pepper in half. Remove the seeds and the white pith. Thinly slice the green pepper from top to bottom. Place sliced green pepper into the bowl with the tomatoes and cucumbers.
Peel and half (top to bottom) the red onion. Thinly slice and place in the bowl with the other vegetables. You may use 1/2 of the onion only if you like, I like it better with all of the onion.
Drain the Kalamata olives and put them in the bowl with the vegetables. You can use either pitted or with pits, it's just easier to eat if they are pitted.
Crumble the feta cheese over the vegetables and olives.
Prepare the Dressing
Mix the lemon juice and vinegar in a small bowl. I use red wine or white vinegar, but feel free to experiment with your favorite type. Add the oregano, parsley, salt and pepper and stir well until the salt is absorbed. I use dried oregano and parsley, but if you would like to use fresh adjust the amounts accordingly. (Probably 1 tablespoon of oregano and 2 tablespoons of parsley.)
**A note about juicing a lemon: You will get more juice from a lemon if it is at room temperature. If you have kept them in the refrigerator, you can heat them up in the microwave. Heat for 30 seconds and an additional 30 seconds if needed. You can freeze any left over juice for another day.
Whisk in the olive oil 1 tablespoon at a time until it is well emulsified. I usually use extra virgin olive oil, but regular olive oil tastes OK also.
Assemble the Salad
Pour the dressing over the vegetables, olives and cheese in the large bowl. Mix the salad well. Cover the salad and place it in the refrigerator for 2 to 24 hours. (It tastes better the longer it sits.)
Remove the salad from the refrigerator 15 to 30 minutes prior to serving it. Olive oil tends to harden in the refrigerator, and this does not look very appetizing. Let the salad come close to room temperature, mix it well, transfer it to an attractive serving bowl and enjoy!
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