Summer Santorini Salad

July was crazy busy for us. Too many vacations and long weekends. Is that possible?

While the time away from home was well enjoyed, we did also breathe a sigh of relief when we knew it was all over and we could settle back into our own home. The first night back from vacation, we couldn’t wait to enjoy our back patio, fire up the grill and sip something cold.

When I read the description for this Santorini Salad in one of the cook books I regularly flip through, I immediately mentally bookmarked it, and thought what a better time to make use of it.

“A traditional vegetable and feta salad, dressed with olive oil and fresh lemon juice, Santorini Salad sparkles with fresh flavors. Add a crusty loaf of bread, a well-chilled white wine, and perhaps some grilled shrimp, and you will have a very fine summer meal.” 

Can you picture it?

Setting out to recreate this little vision, I started with the search for the perfect loaf of artisan bread. I read so many labels until I found the one that described exactly what I was looking for: crusty on the outside, moist on the inside.

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Next up was the shrimp. Given that it’s summer, the question of how to cook the shrimp was a no brainer: on the grill. The seasonings as well came without a second thought: basil, oregano, salt, pepper, olive oil. Simplicity.

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With the sides all in place, all there was left to do was chop and mix a few fresh veggies, top them with feta cheese, and call it Santorini Salad.

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Well that, and of course the white wine had to be poured, and a glass of extra artichoke hearts set out to enjoy atop the extra slices of fresh bread.

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Please note the paper towels. One of the most fun parts of this meal was the lack of utensils. With only a serving spoon to dish out the vegetable salad, the remainder of the work was left up to the fingers and deft bread scooping skills.

Santorini Salad

Yield: 4 - 6 servings

Santorini Salad

Adapted from Serving Up the Harvest: Celebrating the Goodness of Fresh Vegetables

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup artichoke hearts
  • 1 c kalamata or black olives
  • 6-8 oz feta cheese

Instructions

  1. Combine lemon juice, olive oil, oregano and onion in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Toss well and let sit at room temperature for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Cut tomatoes, cucumber, and red pepper. Add to bowl.
  3. Add artichokes and olives. Mix well.
  4. Add the cheese and mix again.
  5. Serve immediately alongside a crusty loaf of bread.
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