In the lobby of the office building where my husband works is a wonderful deli run by Iraqi immigrants. In addition to their standard deli fare, they feature authentic middle eastern choices on their menu. My husband especially likes their tabouleh and tomato feta salad. He mentioned the tomato feta salad so frequently that I wanted to try it for myself. Since I don't make the 25-mile one way trip that often, it was up to me to make it happen in my own kitchen. My husband said that while this is not an exact replica, it is a good adaptation of the original favorite. Here is my version of Tomato Feta Salad...
Here are the ingredients that you need.
All of these items are easily found in your local grocery store.
1 bag of romaine lettuce
1 package of cherry tomatoes (You can use a pint of grape tomatoes too.)
1 8oz container of feta cheese (crumbled)
18 - 24 kalamata olives (pitted)
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt & pepper
Now we combine!
Cut the washed cherry (or grape) tomatoes in half and add them to a large bowl. You will need the space to add the lettuce later.
Add the olives, feta, and the lemon juice.
I had a picture of one of my favorite kitchen gadgets (a wooden lemon reamer) in use, but I deleted it by accident. I do want digress for a moment and take this opportunity to sing its praises. No kitchen should be without one. I had a metal reamer for years, but I wasn't really happy with the results so I purchased one like this. (This reamer is on sale at Amazon.com for $4.99.) A wooden reamer is far superior to a metal one because it gets into the tiny corners of your citrus fruit and wrings every last drop of juice out of the rind. My metal reamer also gave my hands unsightly grayish smudges as I used it. That always made me leery of what it was adding to the juice. I have used my reamer on citrus fruits as small as a lime all the way up to grapefruit. It worked wonderfully on each of them.
Okay, back to the task at hand...
Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine.
Add 1/2 to a full bag of lettuce. Gently fold the lettuce into the tomato cheese mixture.
This side dish would be delicious with a large variety of dishes. It would be the perfect crunchy addition to savory gyros. Add some sliced grilled chicken breasts to make it a main dish. Serve it with spiced lentils to keep the meal vegetarian. I paired it with poached mahi mahi and rice pilaf. The possibilities are endless but always delicious!
If you would like a printable version of this recipe, send me a comment with your e-mail address since I have not yet figured out how to embed a PDF here in the text of the blog.
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I have other cooking posts here at Greetings From the Asylum. Here are a few you might enjoy: Hard-Baked Eggs, Hamburger Cookies, and Cranberry Bread from the book Cranberry Thanksgiving.
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