About 6 years ago, I was given a wonderful opportunity to travel. The land, people, and history were some of the most remarkable things that I have ever witnessed in my life but the exerpience that resonates most frequently in my head was the food I had the pleasure of eating. One of the places I got to visit was Greece. We traveled among the islands of Santorini, Mykonos, Samos, and also spent some time in Athens. In each of these places, Greek Salad and gyros were abundant, cheap, and delicious. I seriously can’t explain the joy of sitting outdoors on a patio, Greek salad in front of you, a breathtaking view of the ocean, and the most beautiful sunset I have ever set my eyes on. I felt entirely blessed to experience such a perfect moment and will remember it forever. And since I do not foresee myself traveling back to Greece anytime soon, I have taken with me a recipe I asked some locals for to allow me to remember the greatness of the country. Granted they did not give me proper measurements and the only copy I have is scribbled in a small corner of my travel journal, I have used it to make Greek Salad time and time again. This salad tastes so fresh on a sunny day, and can be made very easily.
The majority of places that serve Greeks salads in the various restaurants I’ve visted back in the States use lettuce as a base for the salad. In Greece, however, there is no lettuce, and the dish consists mainly of ripe tomatoes and crunchy cucumbers. Also, we were often served the salad with a huge slab of feta cheese on top of the entire salad instead of having it crumbled beforehand. Then you would just take a chunk of cheese, scoop up pieces of tomato, cucumber, olives and onion and enjoy a hearty bite! The picture above doesn’t do the dish justice, but I just used what I had on hand! It still came out delicious. Here is the recipe I got from the friends I met in Greece:
Traditional Greek Salad Recipe
2 ripe tomatoes
Slices of Red Onion
Slab of Feta Cheese
Handful of Pitted Kalamata olives
Slices of Green Bell Pepper
salt and pepper
Cut up cucumber and tomatoes into chunks. Slice red onion and green bell pepper thinly. Add the olives and mix together. Lightly drizzle olive oil over mixture and add a splash of balsamic vinaigrette to taste. Sprinkle dried oregano (this adds wonderful flavor!) and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix all ingredients together throughly and top with a slab of feta cheese. You can also add a little more dried oregano to the cheese if you wish!
Sit somewhere sunny and enjoy!