Sunday, December 4, 2011

Dakos Salad

Several years ago I was on the island of Paros, Greece and finally had the opportunity to put a name to one of my favorite salads! It is called Dakosalata and it is delicious! I had eaten it before, but I did not know what it was called. We had just left the beach and were looking for something healthy, yet satisfying and this salad met both our needs. Because we were both so hungry, we ordered two. The first in the classic tomato style and the second was topped with grilled diced zucchini. Both were great! I have provided the recipe for the basic tomato version since you can dress up this salad however you see fit. The only thing that might prove difficult is finding the barley rusk bread which forms the base of the salad. If you cannot find it, I would suggest using large rustic croutons or day old whole wheat bread (not the sliced sandwich style) cut up in large cubes. If you live close to a Greek market you shouldn't have a hard time finding the barley rusk. One market that definitely sells it is Titan Foods in Astoria, www.titanfood.com. They also will have all of the other ingredients, including reasonably priced extra virgin olive oil and excellent oregano. You can also always email me for sources and alternative ingredients!

To make this salad for two you will need,

Ingredients:

-1 large piece of Dakos rusk bread (or two to three cups of croutons/bread)

-2 medium sized very ripe tomatoes, grated or finely chopped

-4 oz crumbled feta

-1/2 cup good quality Kalamata olives, you can also use pitted Kalamatas

-Tbs. capers (or more if you like them)

Extra virgin olive oil, and vinegar if you like it. We do!

I have seen some restaurants serve this salad on a bed of arugula which is also nice.

Assemble the bread in the bottom of a bowl and top with the remaining ingredients. Add the olive oil, vinegar and oregano. Salt if you like. The feta usually adds a decent amount of salt, but I always add more as I am a salt feign. Many recipes recommend wetting the bread before you assemble the salad, but I like it crunchy. If you prefer the bread a little soggy, assemble the salad 30 minutes before you want to eat it or wet the bread lightly before you add the other ingredients. As with many of my recipes, there is no exact way to make this salad, so experiment. I have even spread olive tapenade on the bread when I ran out of olives.

Hope you like it!

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