I am always thinking of things to make with the abundance of items in my garden. Mint being one of them. I’ve said it on a number of occasions, and have even gone as far as telling my neighbors to swing by and clip some my fresh mint or sage. It kills me when going to the store and seeing fresh herbs being sold for close to $4.00, whether it be basil, thyme, rosemary, or mint. Mint is one of the herbs in my garden where everyone enjoys. My daughter is often back there picking fresh mint leaves and walking around the house eating them. My boys are often looking for bugs around the plants, and me, well, I am the one watering, and picking a plethora of leaves for recipes such as larb gai, or fresh fruit with a mojito syrup.
As summer is winding down, we are taking advantage of our local farmers market buying carrots, lettuces, beans, and everything in between. With that said, we are consuming a lot of salads; practically every evening we are preparing a large salad as the centerpiece. So this past week, I wanted to do something a bit different with the salad, and use some traditional ingredients, but jazz it up a bit with some mint dressing, and offer some toasted pita. I offered a salad known as Fattoush, and Arab salad that is just out of this world in flavor.
Let’s get started.
Ingredients: [Print this Recipe]
- 1/2 head of Romaine lettuce, washed, spun dry, torn into bite sized pieces
- 1 large carrot, cleaned, and cut into bite sized pieces
- 1/4 cup of red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 yellow bell pepper, cut into bite sized pieces
- 2 small seedless cucumbers, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 tomato, seeded and chopped
- 2 1/2 slices of pita bread
- 1/4 cup of flat Italian leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup of fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup of olive oil, plus 1 tbsp
- salt, to taste
Begin by taking the one tablespoon of olive oil and brushing it on to the pita slices. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and add the pita to the oven, baking for about 12 minutes or until fully toasted.
During this time prepare your remaining ingredients, adding all of the vegetables to a mixing bowl. Add a pinch of salt, and give it a good toss.
Next, make the dressing. Add the lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic to a small mixing bowl. Use a whisk and whisk until the olive oil emulsifies. Set aside.
Remove the pita from the oven, and set aside to cool. When fully cooled, break the pita into bite sized pieces and toss them into the mixing bowl with the vegetables. Pour the salad dressing over the top, and mix to coat.
Let the salad sit in the dressing for at least five minutes to allow the bread to soak up some of the dressing.
Serve in a nice serving dish, and dig in. The result is a salad that blew my wife away. She was startled by the flavors the mint dressing exposed. As it looks like a standard dinner salad, it isn’t. It is actually better and offers a tart and minty flavor that has you coming back for more, and to me, that’s not a bad thing. Hope you enjoy.