Cucumber

Greek Salad

August  4, 2021
5 Stars
Photo by MJ Kroeger. Prop Stylist: Suzie Myers. Food Stylist: Anna Billingskog.
  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Serves 4 as a side dish, 2 as a main
Author Notes

If there’s one dish that conjures up images of the Greek islands for me, it is this, the classic Greek salad. In all honesty, it is best enjoyed when looking out at the Mediterranean Sea with sand between your toes, but on a hot summer’s day, its sweet and salty flavors can be refreshing and delicious wherever you are. As with all simple dishes, it helps to pay attention to a few key details to get it just right. So make sure your tomatoes are sweet, ripe, and juicy; keep the cucumber in the refrigerator until just before serving (this salad needs to be cold to be refreshing); and don’t crumble the cheese, but rather serve it in a thick slice, as they do in Greece. I like to keep the tomato and cucumber pieces quite chunky and large, as I prefer the aesthetic and this is how it’s traditionally served. If you find raw onions a bit pungent for your taste, you can marinate them in the salad dressing before assembling; this will soften them and remove some of their astringency. Serve with plenty of crusty bread to soak up the juices.

Reprinted with permission from Ripe Figs: Recipes and Stories from Turkey, Greece, and Cyprus by Yasmin Khan (W. W. Norton & Company, 2021).Yasmin Khan

Ingredients
  • Dressing
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to serve
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Salad
  • 1/2 small red onion, finely sliced, or to taste
  • 4 medium-size ripe tomatoes (total weight about 500 grams)
  • 500 grams cucumber
  • 1 handful Kalamata olives
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed
  • 1/3 green bell pepper, cut crosswise into 3 circles
  • 150 grams feta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Crusty bread, for serving
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Start by making the dressing, whisking all the ingredients together in a bowl. (If you want to marinate the onion first, add it to the dressing now, letting it soften there for 20 minutes.)
  2. Cut the tomatoes into large, thick, wedges, about ¾ inch (2 centimeters) wide. Peel the cucumber and cut it into thick, diagonal slices about ¾ inch (2 centimeters) wide also, then cut these slices in half, so they are roughly the same size as the tomatoes.
  3. Place the tomatoes, cucumber, and onion in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss together well.
  4. Scatter the olives and capers over the salad, layer on the slices of green bell pepper, and place a large piece of feta on top. Drizzle the entire salad with a bit more extra-virgin olive oil and finish with the dried oregano. Serve with crusty bread.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • AmazonAnnie
    AmazonAnnie
  • BAE
    BAE
Yasmin Khan is a food and travel writer and the author of the best-selling Persian cookbook The Saffron Tales.

2 Reviews

AmazonAnnie August 13, 2021
I make this all the time and we love it. Next time try putting a bit of mint in - I put some in the dressing and if I have some left over I throw it in the salad. I learned this from a Greek chef when I raved about his Horiatiki salad. When I can find it I use lemon infused olive oil - it enhances the lemon nicely.

Thanks.
 
BAE August 8, 2021
Outrageously good! I added the oregano to the dressing. Served with golzeme and tzatziki. Great August dinner!