Apr 30, 2009
With all of the excitement around here ramping up to the Festival of Chefs, I find myself thinking about food possibilities almost constantly. So it was no surprise that I ended up meandering around CheeseB yesterday, basket in hand, with a very specific mission:
Because it's Spring. Because it's good. Just because. I decided to call this a Zen salad because of the intricate balance of flavours and textures you can't help but meditate on as you chew. It starts with the feta-- humble though it is-- the right feta can transform a pretty good salad into something unbelievably delicious.
It so happens that CheeseB has such a feta. Made from Goat's milk and imported from Greece, it has a soft crumble and a creamy tang that is quite pleasant. The suggestion on the wrapper was to try using it in place of chevre or cream cheese.
Olives, too, are of vital importance. It is hard to miss the attractive display of assorted olives at the front counter. I went with the pitted kalamatas. Meaty, tasty little things that I added liberally to the salad. This is the advantage of making a Greek salad yourself. What is up with this whole "one olive per salad" business so commonly practiced? I suppose this is fine when you don't like them-- but that is not me. I ate half of them before the salad was even made.
The other factor that made this an above average dish was the simple, aromatic dressing-- a good extra-virgin olive oil, lemon juice and chopped fresh dill.
Here is the recipe:
Grape tomatoes, in halves
Red onion, sliced thin
Lemon juice, freshly squeezed
Extra virgin olive oil
Pepper and sea salt
Quantities are to taste.
All I have to add in the way of instructions is to moisten the salad as it is mixed with a little dressing, crumble in some feta, then drizzle on more dressing and crumble lots of feta on top when it is served.