Thursday, August 30, 2007

Almost Greek salad

Almost Greek salad

Yep, almost Greek. Because I used a different type of cheese to replace feta – queijo Minas frescal. And I used lime juice in the dressing, instead of red wine vinegar.

The verdict? I had a huge bowl of this salad. HUGE. I mean it – it was all I had for lunch, with a glass of wine. Ok, 2 glasses of wine. :)

I still want to try it with feta, but my Brazilian twist worked so well I’m submitting this salad to this Weekend Herb Blogging, this time hosted by its creator, the lovely Kalyn, of Kalyn’s Kitchen.


Almost Greek salad
adapted from Kitchen: The Best of the Best

4 ripe tomatoes
2 Lebanese (short) cucumbers
1 red onion
175g (1 cup) Kalamata olives
½ teaspoon dried oregano
200g queijo fresco or creamy feta

juice of 1 small lime
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper

Cut the tomatoes into chunks and arrange on a serving platter.
Thickly cut the cucumbers; cut the onion in paper thin slices. Add to the tomatoes and scatter the olives over the plate. Cut the cheese in thick slices and arrange over the vegetables. Sprinkle the salad with the oregano.
Make the dressing: mix well the ingredients. Drizzle over the salad and serve.

You can present the salad as I did, inspired by one episode of Take Home Chef: mix the vegetables in a bowl, sprinkle with oregano and drizzle with the dressing.
Place amounts of salad on serving plates and top with the slices of cheese. Drizzle once more with the dressing.

Serves: 4 (as a side dish)

Almost Greek salad


Anonymous said...

Looks great Patricia! I like your Brazilian lime twist on a Greek staple. I've never had that queijo Minas fresca, but I'll keep my eye out for it.

Anna said...

Mmm...gorgeous picture! I especially like the little red onion ring peeking out from under the cheese :)

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

I don't know this cheese, but I'll look forward to trying it when I visit Brazil!

Kalyn Denny said...

Sounds just wonderful. I think the lime juice in the dressing would give it a whole new attitude. I haven't had this exact type of cheese, but I'm picturing it to be like some of the soft Mexican cheese, which would be fantastic with lime juice.

BTW, if Lydia has plans to come to Brazil, I'm very jealous!

Brilynn said...

Looks great! I'm thinking it would also be good if you grilled the cheese...

Anonymous said...

Patricia--Your salad looks and sounds delicious. And what an elegant presentation! Knowing my share of Brazilians--and knowing your recipes--I have to ask: How many limes do you go through in a week? :)

Anh said...

Pat, this is such a nice salad! And yes, I vote for the lime juice. We use a lot of them as salad dressing in Vietnam, too. :D

Maggie said...

The Greek salad looks wonderful. Its always a hit with me.

Karin W. said...

'Queijo fresco' looks creamier than Greek feta. I don´t think I have ever seen a creamy Greek feta. Maybe French feta is creamy? The Swedish brands are not. We have some creamy goat cheeses in Sweden - too expensive, I´m sorry to say.

I like your light salad. I´m sure it had a big taste.

Cynthia said...

I bet the lime juice on this gave the salad a bright, crisp flavour.

test it comm said...

Greek salads are one of my favorites and I have been eating them all week. I have never had queijo fresco but it looks good. Sometimes I replace the red wine vinegar with lemon juice for the dressing for a Greek salad. I imagine that lime would also be a nice twist.

Abitofafoodie said...

Ooh. This looks delicious - really fresh and summery. The lime dressing sounds great, I must give it a try.

Nora B. said...

Look so fresh and delicious. I've not heard of this cheese, so thanks for introducing me to it. I would have had 2 glasses too :-)

Lucy said...

I adore your Brazilian twist!

Peabody said...

I think the lime sounds even better.

Graeme said...

I saw this post on Tastespotting, Patricia.

What a nice twist, and I really like the look of that cheese. It looks like a flavour sponge - Just the right texture and density to soak up flavour from everything it touches.

pam said...


Anonymous said...

Ah, Patricia that looks delicious... and the lime in the dressing sounds fantastic and fresh

Lia said...

i loved greek salad since i could find easy here in supermaket, urs is very beautiful!

Anonymous said...

Sometimes the best and most interesting food comes from using a well-known dish as the starting point and then recreating it with what you have available. This is fusion food that makes sense rather than fusion for the sake of novelty.

Sounds like you've created a new classic with this one.

Parisbreakfasts said...

I love queijo du Minas and the idea of lime juice both sound like a zingy twist on the ole Greek salad.

Paola Westbeek said...

Oh yes! I love lime juice on just about any salad! My parents are Colombian and most of the time they use lime juice on salads instead of lemon. Yum!


Everything4sweets said...

Good looking salad picture, looks healthy and yummy with cheese, I love cheese.... Yummm :)

Kelly-Jane said...

I've sort of fallen of my being good wagon, but this looks so delicious, I might just have to get on it again!

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

Nice! It looks so pretty stacked that way, and I'll bet the lime just tastes incredibly fresh!

Sara said...

Mmmm,sounds wonderful!

Truffle said...

Absolutely delightful! You combine flavours together so beautifully. You have a real talent.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Bri, thank you! I wanted to make the salad, but had no feta around, so I needed to play with it a little.

Anna, thank you, sweetie!

Lydia, you'll love it, I'm sure!

Kalyn, you should come too! :)
We use lime juice a lot here, limes are way more common and available then lemons.

Bri, that idea is fabulous - gonna try it as soon as I come back from my vacation!

Terry, many, many, my friend - we use it for salads a lot, to drizzle over fish, and also to make limeade. Limes are something I always have in my refrigerator - always. :)

Anh, really, dear? One more thing in common! Sweetened condensed milk and limes!

Margaret, thank you, I'm glad you like it.

Karin, queijo Minas it's not creamy, but it's soft. And feta is expensive here too, not to mention hard to find.

Cynthia, I used it a lot for salad dressings.

Kevin, I like the idea of using lemon, too! Tks!

Antonia, you definitely should!

Nora, it was delicious paired with the wine. :)

Lucy, tks!

Pea, I usually go for lime juice instead of vinegar, pretty much all the time. :)

Graeme, it is like a sponge! And the flavors worked out so well together, better than I expected.

Pam, tks, dear!

Dayna, thank you - I'd certainly exchange some of this for one of those delicious desserts you made with peaches. ;)

Lia, thank you!

Julie, your comment made my heart smile, sweetie - thank you for your generosity!

Carol, thank you for stopping by! It's wonderful to know you know and like this cheese!

Paola, so it's a Latin thing! We do it too here.

Everything 4 Sweets, healthy and light, you are right!

Kelly-Jane, it's wonderful when we can have something healthy and delicious - I know sometimes it's hard to accomplish. :)

T.W., tks, my dear friend! The lime gives it a nice tang.

Sara, thank you, sweetie!

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

Patricia the salad looks and probably tastes incredible. You even prepared it as they do in Greece with a slab of cheese on top instead of crumbled or grated. Great recipes always begin with a base and let our imaginations carry on from there!!!

Anonymous said...

What a delicious looking salad. I would happily pull up a bowl and join you for lunch!

Anonymous said...

Very nice salad and picture as well. I love all kinds of cheese, tomato, oilve salads, so this one sounds perfect to me.

Greetings from London, Margot

Lisa said...

That looks just gorgeous! What a presentation! A perfect miniature. The salad ingredients are right up my alley.

eatme_delicious said...

Yum I love Greek salad. I'd love to try the cheese you replaced the feta with. Now I want to go and make some Greek salad too. :) A giant bowl of it sounds like a delicious meal!

Belinda said...

Oh, yum, Patricia! This sounds wonderful, and looks so pretty too. And definitely add me to the lime loving group. What a great idea for adding to your salad! :-)

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

What no bread with a salad as divine as this!
The wine is good but still.
I know Patricia I love a salad very much like this for lunch and can do it day after day and always feel so smug and happy with it! Beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Gorgeous salad Patricia! Looks light and refreshing...and with wine too...what a perfect lunch :)

TBC said...

What a beauiful salad. I will ty this without the olives. Thanks for sharing.

Deborah said...

That cheese looks really good. I will have to look for it...

Patricia Scarpin said...

Valli, I got the idea of placing the cheese this way from Curtis Stone. I'm so glad you liked it!

Lynn, you are most welcome to join me, sweetie!

Margot, tks for visiting!

Lisa, tks, dear! Even the meat-eating husband liked this one. :)

Ashley, it's a pretty much complete meal!

Belinda, thank you! We use limes on salads all the time here, you would like having salads here in Brazil. :)

Tanna, some crusty bread would be perfect here, tks for suggesting!

Joey, you've said it all. ;)

TBC, what's wrong with the olives, don't you like them, sweetie?

Jeanne said...

Oh I love Greek salad! Oddly, we eat loads of it in South Africa (although a slightly bastardised version of the traditional ingredients on a bed of lettuce) and it's one of the things I miss as a restaurant menu standard in England.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Greek salad is the one salad that my husband will consider a real meal.:) I've always used lemon, but I'll have to try lime for a variation. Thanks for the idea, Patricia!

Peter M said...

You've done the Greek salad justice...good adaptation!

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