Some say it’s the national dish of Israel although this salad can be found in most of the Middle East and Turkey. Basically it’s a salad that has no lettuce that is made with cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, some onions, scallions, radishes, parsley or cilantro and the vegetables are chopped very small. I think every Middle Eastern family has their own special recipe. I use a chopper so they aren’t tiny but the Israelis do chop them quite small. The dressing usually consists of lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and as my family makes it, with a bit of sugar. The salad can be eaten with any type of meal and even breakfast as the Israelis do. This particular recipe comes from my brother in law who lived in Israel for many years and makes the best Israeli salad that I have ever tasted! Whenever he comes over to my house I always ask him to make the dressing for the salad….isn’t that right Yosie? *grin*
1 1/2 – 2 large cucumbers, seeded and chopped
3 large peppers, any color (I used 2 red and a green, but you can use yellow or orange or whatever you have on hand)
1 very large tomato, chopped
2-3 radishes chopped (I didn’t have any but I usually would put them in)
2 small or 1 large scallion (green onion/spring onion), sliced thin and chopped (you can also add a bit of onion, about 1/4 of a cup
approx 2 tbsp. chopped parsley or cilantro
juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
approx. 2 tsp of sugar
salt and pepper, to taste
Add all the veggies to a large bowl and then add the lemon and olive oil. For the seasonings you will just have to taste. It has to be the right balance of lemon, oil, salt, pepper and sugar and the only way to figure that out is to taste it. Just remember, you can always add, so start with smaller amounts.
This is a very simple but yet delicious salad that goes with any meal.