Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Greek Salads - A Totally Healthy and Yummy Treat!

By definition, a Greek salad is: A salad of lettuce and raw vegetables, such as cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions, garnished with olives and feta and dressed with olive oil and vinegar, lettuce is never seen in a true, authentic Greek salad.

In Greece, salads are eaten with the main meal and characterized by the ingredients of the Mediterranean, and particularly Greek origin. Usually, this kind of salad is made of sliced or chopped tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, and green or red peppers garnished with a slice of Feta cheese, olives, and a pinch of dried oregano. In the country, it is served with cruets of olive oil and vinegar and the juice that remains is eaten with bread.

There are many other delicious salads enjoyed across Greece and in Greek dining - here are just a few:
  • Horiatiki Salata is your basic big, fat Greek salad consisting of Greek tomato, cucumber and olive. Horiatiki means village-style, but may be called such terms as “country salad“, “peasant salad“ and of course “village salad“. This fresh, healthy salad is found in one form or another throughout the eastern Mediterranean.Greek Courgette Salad-Fresh mint, feta cheese and courgette (a fancy name for zucchini) are a favorite summer salad combination in small tavernas throughout the Greek Isles.
  • Pantzarosalata- Made with boiled and sliced beetroots (sometimes mixed with beet greens) dressed with olive oil, finely sliced onions, lemon juice or red wine vinegar.
  • Lachanosalata- A cabbage salad has very finely shredded cabbage with salt, olive oil, lemon juice/vinegar dressing. This isn't your everyday coleslaw with the celery and garlic giving this a unique taste. This is really great served with a generous hunk of feta cheese-either crumbled in, or served alongside so you can nibble on pieces of creamy cheese between bites of crispy salad.
  • Cypriot salad, native to the island of Cyprus, consists of finely chopped tomatoes, capers, cucumbers, onions, green bell peppers and flat-leaf parsley, and closely resembles the 'Greek salad' of Greece.
Some spreads and dips found in the meze of Greek cuisine are also regarded as part of the group of “salads” by many Greeks, such as metilzanosalata (eggplant salad), taramosalata (a fish roe dip) and tzatziki (cucumber dip flavored with garlic).

Greek salads are enjoyed around the world. Many cuisines have adopted the dish, and the salad can be found in restaurants, like Ziziki’s Restaurant, as an appetizer, side dish or main course.

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