Thursday, June 16, 2011

Israeli and Not So Israeli Chopped Salad

I love salads of all kinds, especially when produce is in season. Even if not, this salad I am about to share with you is great all the time, its healthy and super easy! Actually, I am going to give you two versions. The first one is just a simple chopped cucumber and tomato salad. If you have to bring something to a pot luck or BBQ this summer, try this salad. Also, its much easier to eat than traditional lettuce salads too!

Here is what you need:

1 long cucumber (I use european seedless ALL the time)
2 vine ripened tomatoes or heirlooms
1/2 red small onion
Your favorite italian dressing

Chop the cucumber and tomato in bite sized pieces. You may want to very gently squeeze some of the juice from the tomato. Throw it all in a bowl and pour just a little bit of the italian dressing over the salad and stir gently. The salad is best when it can marinate for a couple hours, but is still delicious when eaten right away.

Now, the variation I am about to share come from an awesome friend of mine, Dahlia. I actually just met her for the first time in like 11 years or so this past weekend and I am now super excited to introduce this recipe to you, with love of course!

It is a basic Israeli salad, same as above but omit the dressing. Chop an avocado the same way and this time you will want to saute the onion in some olive oil AND add some freshly chopped onion to the salad.

USA Grown Pardina Lentils, Spanish Brown by Palouse Brand -5 LBSSo anyways, you have everything in a bowl, but what makes this a hearty and healthy side dish (or even a meal) are lentils. I use the regular brown lentils that you can buy in any store. They are pretty cheap and can be found amongst the other dried legumes, because technically a lentil is a legume. Boil the lentil according to the package but do not over or under cook, you will know they are ready when they hold shape, but you can easily chew them. Add the lentils to the salad, add the sauteed onion, salt and pepper and squeeze a couple fresh limes over the salad and gently mix. DELICIOUS.

1 cucumber chopped
2 tomatoes chopped
1 onion chopped and sauteed
1 small red onion chopped
1-2 avocados chopped (sprinkle with lime juice right away)
1/2 cup brown lentils


  1. Dan the Israel Salad. I make one too but it is somewhat different. I use olive oil, lemon juice, sea or kosher salt and a spice called Zatar to dress it. You can get it at the Butcherie in Brookline or any Israeli grocery store. Delicious! I also use scallion instead of purple onion and no avocado. I do radish, red pepper, cuke and tomatoes on the vine. Sometimes add olives or other things but they key is to chop it small.

  2. My family makes that first one often. :-)