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Tasty Greek and Mediterranean Salads

GREEK SALAD WITH TOMATOES, CUCUMBER, OLIVES AND ONION (HORIATIKI)

In Greek cuisine the term "salad" is a confusing one to most foreigners, due to its loose interpretation. All spreads are called salads, usually full of calories, but nevertheless delicious. 

At both the lunch or dinner table, a meal might be comprised of a handful or more of small dishes or Meze, usually accompanied by Ouzo or wine.

Among these appetizers one will find preparations such as mashed roasted eggplant (melitzanosalata), whipped fish roe (taramosalata), yogurt, garlic and cucumber dip (tzatziki) all in the 'salad' or 'salates' category, though they are far from a foreigner's notion of a salad.

One possible explanation for this choice of word to describe these dishes, is because they are served cold, as are all other salads.


There are warm salads in Greek cuisine as well, such as boiled greens (horta) or varied bean salads, served at room temperature or chilled, and dressed with lemon juice or vinegar, salt and olive oil. 

Naturally, there is also the ever-popular Village Salad (horiatiki) or as Greek restaurants all over the globe refer to it, the 'Greek Salad'; it is a familiar site - ripe tomatoes, olives (usually from Kalamata), raw onions, peppers, cucumbers and herbs such as dried oregano. Most of the time a wedge of feta sits on the top of the Greek salad, although this is often left up to the customer's discretion.


 

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