Village Salad • Horyatiki salata
Known to our visiting tourists, not surprisingly as a Greek salad, we consume bowlfuls of village salad at just about every meal. I had to include a recipe, of course, but really you need to look in your fridge, using your favourite salad ingredients. I sometimes add peppers, lettuce, white cabbage, grated beetroot, depending on what uncle Eddy or cousin George has bought down or what I have to hand.
Our green salad leaves flourish in the rich Cypriot soil, shooting out of the ground as fast as you can gather them…rocket is fantastically hot and peppery for such a cool looking leaf, sturdier and larger than the leaves you might be used to. Purslane and louvana are picked daily in their summer season, adding a delicate flavour. But use you own collection of whatever edible green leaves are available…baby spinach, lambs lettuce, watercress or mizuna. Just one rule with a Greek salad, prepare it just before eating…raw, fresh and vital.
This fills a huge bowl
1 bunch of rocket
1 bunch of purslane or louvana
½ a bunch of flat leafed parsley,
½ a bunch of leaf coriander
(for a more traditional salad)
1 red onion, sliced lengthways
1 small cucumber skin on, diced
3-4 large juicy tomatoes cut into
a handful of black olives
juice of 1 lemon
extra virgin olive oil
a good pinch of salt
125g of feta cheese (optional),
crumbled into large pieces
a sprinkling of dried rigani
(our wild oregano) or if freshly
chopped use 1 tbsp
So this is easy and unpretentious…in a large bowl arrange the ingredients in the order given. Drizzle on as much olive oil as you like, squeeze over the lemon juice, a sprinkling of salt to taste. Toss to mix the salad. Then add the feta and scatter on the oregano.