This is a very well known salad dish, in the Middle-East, and is particularly associated with Egypt and the Lebanon. Its really easy to prepare, needing some coarse chopping and then mixing. The only thing is, it benefits from "marinading" in the lemon juice for an hour or so.
The final flourish, the addition of a spice called sumac is optional, but authentic. Our supply is Iranian sumac, bought in Tehran from THE most amazing spice shop, and supplied by really friendly people.
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Step 1: Ingredients
4 tomatoes - a nice fresh sweet variety for preference.
4 spring onions (scallions)
3 cloves of freshly crushed/ chopped garlic
Broad leaf parsley ( a good bunch)
Garden mint ( a couple of sprigs)
Juice of 2 lemons
3-4 pita breads
Sumac, if available.
Step 2: Preparation
Into one bowl, throw all the ingredients
1.) Cut cucumber into 4 length-ways, chop into 6mm / 1/4" chunks.
2.) Chop tomato into similar slices, and chop into thumbnail sized pieces (don't bother peeling tomatoes, lifess too short)
3.) Chop scallions into short chunks
4. Chop garlic, or use a garlic press
5. ) Coarsely chop parsley, strip mint leaves off stalk, and chop and add to bowl.
7.) Juice 2 lemons (nuke 'em for 15 seconds first, to make 'em juicy) Pour over contents of bowl...
Mix thoroughly, make sure the veggies are nicely covered with the lemon juice.
Put aside in refrigerator for an hour.
Step 3: Serving and Suggestions
Toast 3 or 4 pita breads and chop into bite sized pieces.
Just before serving, mix in pita bread
If you're familiar with sumac, add some sprinkling to the dish before serving - it adds a further lemony flavour which is very refreshing. Otherwise, serve sumac in a pepper shaker with the salad.
Serve and enjoy.
We're serving the salad in pitta bread, with sea-bass cooked with paprika and lime