Without doubt, this salad is my favorite to make and it's a meal in itself. This Fattoush salad fills the plates with plants for the most part, but adds texture and a bit of carb in the form of crumbled flatbread or pita. It's incredibly healthy, but won't leave you feeling deprived in the least. The dressing is citrus forward, tangy, and tastes incredible especially on the flatbread pieces.
This recipe has the added benefit of being relatively easy to make, inexpensive, and very flavorful. The only "gotcha" is the pomegranate molasses and sumac ingredients that you use to make the dressing might be a bit hard to find, depending on where you are. It should be available at a middle eastern or Indian grocery, or could be available in gourmet or natural grocery stores (I can also find both of these at my local Whole Foods). If you can't find sumac or pomegranate molasses locally, I'll add a link to find it online at the bottom of this page.
The Fattoush Salad is middle eastern / Mediterranean, and there are several different versions of the salad depending on the region it comes from. The vegetables used vary, how they're sliced, what's in the dressing (for example, there are versions with dairy added!), and more.
I was first introduced to this recipe at a local restaurant. I was so blown away by the flavor that I enthusiastically declared my love for the salad to our server. It was a bit embarrassing. But that's why I knew I had to go home and figure out how to recreate it. I have ordered this salad now at a few different restaurants, and tried several different versions of it (most likely representing different regions and obviously the chef's preference), and what you find below is my favorite version.
The salad is not difficult to make, just a bit time consuming from all the chopping.
There are several ways to serve it. You can serve it by itself, of course, but you can also opt to add olives and pickled radishes. If so, you may want to place them on the side of the plate to accompany the salad.
- 1 pound tomatoes chopped
- 1 pound cucumbers cut into chunks, as pictured
- 8 green onions lengths, chopped into pieces
- 4 cups romaine lettuce
- 2 cups pea greens aka pea shoots. substitute sunflower greens or purslane or more romaine
- 1.5 cups mint leaves
- 1.5 cups flat-leaf parsley
- 1 tsp ground sumac
- 2 cups pita breads or flatbread toasted until hard and broken into pieces as pictured
- Soak the ground sumac in 2 teaspoons of warm water for about 10 minutes, or while you are preparing the rest of the salad.
- After soaked, combine sumac with the rest of the dressing ingredients and whisk thoroughly until everything is combined. Add additional ingredients to taste.
- Note I have removed the oil typically used in this recipe, which tones down the tart taste, so if the dressing is too acidic you may want to adjust the amount of sweetener to taste. You can use stevia or a fruit-based sweetener if you are avoiding syrups. This is completely according to your preferred taste (I prefer it a little bit more on the tart side).
- Toast the pita bread or flatbread in oven or toaster oven. It should be completely toasted (not soft at all) so the pieces do not go soggy in your salad.
- Add pieces to bowl, and drizzle with some of the salad dressing. Toss to coat.
- Add the rest of the salad ingredients to the bowl, drizzling with the rest of the salad dressing and tossing to coat and pix with pita pieces.
- Sprinkle with ground sumac.
- Serve on plates or in bowls and enjoy!
For the flatbread, I generally look for a product (or make one) that is flour, water, and salt.
Reasons to love this salad
This salad is full of fiber with the focus on vegetables. Obviously it's mostly whole food, and also does not have any cholesterol (of course, a big benefit of a plant-based diet). It also is a source for vitamins A, B6, C and manganese.
Where to find sumac and pomegranate molasses
Look in your local middle eastern or Indian grocery stores, and if you don't have a local store like this check your favorite health food store or natural grocery store.
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