I have a confession to make. And that is: I make this salad every 2 weeks. Maybe more.
Alex and I first discovered it early this spring when we were flipping through the Ottolenghi cookbook Jerusalem. One bite of this salad, which he calls “Na’ama’s Fattoush,” was all it took for us to fall in love.
If you look in our cookbook today, you’ll find random streaks of green, tiny dots of sumac, and remnants of oily hands all over that page. You may call it yucky, I call it loved.
Of course, since that time, I’ve made changes to the recipe, as happens with any recipe that you make over and over again, taking the parts you like best and enhancing them, taking away what you don’t like, and adding in your own personal touch.
And while the original recipe is unreal amazing, I have to say, I think this one is even better.
So what is a fattoush salad? Well, it’s a middle eastern chopped vegetable salad made with thinly sliced cucumbers, radishes, tomato, homemade pita chips, and tons of fresh mint and parsley. It’s also typically topped with ground sumac for a gorgeous sprinkled look.
So to give you an idea of what I changed:
-I’ve found that the original amount of yogurt/milk is often too much and pools at the bottom of the bowl. To offset this, I make less entirely, and I also make a higher ratio of yogurt to milk.
-Heirloom tomatoes are the only way to go in this salad, IMO. This salad really benefits from a sweet, juicy tomato like an heirloom. I like to do a mixture of red and yellow, for color.
-Ottolenghi calls for more garlic and more scallions than I like. So I use less.
-The original version of the salad calls for 3 mini cucumbers. I find 5 to be a more balanced amount. I also slice them into medallions instead of chopping them.
-I’ve found that using pita, not naan, and toasting it until it’s as hard as cardboard, is the ultimate game-changer. Toasting it this way makes it better absorb the dressing, and also makes it not immediately soggy.
-Feta. I hope this isn’t sacrilege, but I looove it in this salad.
Hope you love it as much as we do! Of course, if you want to compare my version with the original, you can find it here.
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 3-4 large heirloom tomatoes, diced
- 3 oz radishes, thinly sliced
- 5 mini cucumbers, thinly sliced
- 1 scallion, diced
- 1/2 oz fresh mint, coarsely chopped
- 1 oz flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
- 1 large clove garlic, diced
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
- 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, plus more to taste
- 4 pita breads, toasted until golden and fully hard
- 6 oz feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 teaspoons sumac (or more to taste)
- In a mason jar or cup with a lid, shake milk and yogurt together and place in fridge until bubbles form on the surface. let sit at least 2 hours, but up to 1 day.
- When you're near ready to serve, combine fermented yogurt mixture with tomatoes, radishes, cukes, scallion, mint, parsley, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and vinegar. Sit for at least 20 minutes for all the flavors to combine.
- When you're ready to serve, crumble the pita into large pieces and toss to combine. Towards the end of your mixing, toss in feta. Garnish with sumac and serve!