MY COLORFUL BIG FAT GREEK SALAD
The colorful fresh veggies in this recipe make the presentation beautiful on its own, and its mixture of flavors and textures makes it impressive for the most discerning guests.
• 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
• 1 teaspoon minced anchovy (1 or 2)
• 1/4 cup fresh oregano
• 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
• 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
• Sea salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste
• 1/4 cup diced English cucumber
• 2 Roma tomatoes, diced
• 1/4 cup diced red onion
• 1/4 cup chopped kalamata olives
• 3 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese, plus extra for garnish
• 1 cup thinly sliced romaine lettuce (use your bread knife to make thin slices from a head of romaine)
• 4 slices sourdough bread, toasted
1. In your blender, pulse the mustard, anchovy, and oregano until mixed. Add the sherry vinegar and pulse until well combined. While blending at medium speed, drizzle in the olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper.
2. In a large bowl, toss the cucumber, tomato, onion, olives, feta cheese, and romaine with 1/2 cup of the dressing. Taste the salad to see if it needs more dressing, salt, or pepper.
3. Mound the salad in a large serving bowl. Cut the toasted bread into wedges, tuck the wedges around, and garnish it with more crumbled feta. For individual portions, hold the toasted bread wedge in the center of each small plate, and pile the salad high around it. This makes each plate look like a sailboat. You could also serve individual salad portions in margarita or martini glasses with the toast jutting out like a sail.
4. Store the leftover dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can toss the leftover salad as well as the dressing with some pasta for a great Greek pasta salad.
Recipes from Gourmet Meals in Crappy Little Kitchens by Jennifer Schaertl
(HCI Books; April 2010; Trade paperback/$18.95)