Last winter I had the incredible experience of traveling to Greece. We stayed mainly in Athens and made day trips out to different locations, such as Delphi and Olympus. Our guide Betty was fantastic and animated, with a wealth of knowledge about each and every destination. She also made sure we had access to excellent family-owned restaurants, and helped me to navigate menus so that I could eat safely without fear of gluten. One of our staples, other than Tzatziki, was the Greek Salad. Always with fresh and tasty ingredients, we had one with almost every meal--even breakfast! Whereas in North America, Greek Salad typically contains lettuce, in Greece you will never find lettuce in your salad, except maybe if you are in a very touristy area. This recipe is flexible, and can be adjusted based on your preferences. If you don't like raw onions or peppers, just leave them out! If you don't like olives, you're probably crazy, but you can omit them! Don't do dairy? Leave out the feta! You can just use good quality olive oil and lemon for the dressing, but I've also included a more elaborate dressing as well.
Greek Salad Lots of Fresh Tomatoes, cut into chunks Lots of Cucumbers, cut into chunks Some Red Onion, thinly sliced Some Green Pepper, thinly sliced Handful of Kalamata Olives, pitted or un-pitted (just warn people!) Wedge of Feta Cheese (try to source good quality Greek or Bulgarian sheep's milk Feta) Dried Oregano, to sprinkle on top
Dressing 1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1 tsp Garlic, crushed 1 tsp Fresh Oregano, minced 1 tsp Dried Basil 1/2 tsp Black Pepper 1/2 tsp Sea Salt 1 tsp Dijon Mustard 2 tsp Fresh Lemon Juice 1/2 Cup Red Wine Vinegar
Add ingredients in a jar with a lid and shake vigorously to combine. Pour over chopped vegetables and toss to combine. Cut feta into chunks and add to the salad, or cut a slice for each person and add one to each individual serving.