What are you serving to eat during the leading international sports event?
I know the Super Bowl is now a part of history. I’m referring to the Olympics. The 2014 opening ceremony for the winter games is Friday, February 7th. And although this year’s event takes place in Sochi, Russia, the birthplace of the Olympics was ancient Greece. The original games were held from the 8th to the 4th centuries B.C. in Olympia, Greece to honor Zeus, the king of the Greek gods.
The Olympic games were revived in 1894 when Baron Pierre de Coubertin formed the International Olympic Committee, which survives as the overseer of today’s games. The opening ceremony culminates with the lighting of the Olympic Torch, and that is no small feat! Each Olympic cycle the flame is lit in Olympia, Greece and transported to the venue through a relay that is made up mostly of runners. Some legs of the journey have necessitated additional means of transportation though, as when it was rowed across the English Channel in both 1948 and 2012, flown to Helsinki in 1952, and carried on horseback to Stockholm in 1956.
I appreciate that Greece remains involved in the modern games because it makes it so easy to come up with delicious and easy food to enjoy while watching the Olympic events. I love Greek food and have played around with its flavors since I ate my first lamb shank in artichoke and avgolemono sauce in Chicago’s Greek Town a few decades back. I’m not saying how many. In fact, I dedicate an entire week of food to Greek cuisine in the college edition of my Easy Weekly Meals touchscreen cookbook. You can find easy recipes for Gyros, Souvlaki, Pastichio, and Greek Fish in it.
But today I’m giving away one of my latest Greek creations here. My Greek Salad is a crunchy delight that balances salt, acidity, and robust flavor. It makes a great stand- alone meal because it contains both protein and good carbs, but I tend to use it as a side. It goes especially well with my new Greek Duet from my A-La-Carte Recipe Ensembles. Its Mediterranean Meat Sticks are inspired by the kebobs found in Greek restaurants, and the Gyros Sandwiches and Tzatziki Sauce taste like Ambrosia! When I eat them with my Middle Eastern Couscous I feel like I’ve made it to Elysian Fields. And, of course, this salad ties it all together.
Sassy Greek Salad
· 2 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
· 1 T Lemon Juice
· 1 T Rice Wine Vinegar
· 2 Cucumbers, peeled and cut into 1” wedges
· 2 Tomatoes, each cut into eighths
· 1/2 C Purple Onion, chopped
· 8 oz Feta Cheese, cut into 1/4” cubes
· 1/2 C Kalamata Olives, pitted
· Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
· 2 T Flat Parsley, snipped with kitchen shears
· Use whisk to emulsify oil, lemon juice, and vinegar in a small bowl to make salad dressing.
· Peel cucumbers. Halve them lengthwise and then halve them lengthwise again. Cut the 8 long pieces into 1” wedges.
· Place cucumber wedges, tomatoes, onion, cheese, and olives into a large bowl.
· Season lightly with salt, and a little more vigorously with pepper.
· Sprinkle parsley pieces over ingredients.
· Drizzle dressing over salad and use salad tongs or plastic cooking spoons to mix all ingredients, making sure to coat all well with the dressing.
· Serve cold.
Enjoy this crunchy, healthy salad, and visit my blog to see pictures of our other quick and easy Greek dishes in my original post.
Photo Courtesy of Easy Weekly Meals