Friday, May 31, 2013

Salad obessed

We all want to eat more salad, right? It's suppose to be like healthy and stuff. Minus the bacon bits...and the cheese...oh lord the cheese!
 

I found a new salad! I am not ashamed to admit that I ate it 3 times in one week! Whoa! The key to good amazing salads comes down to textures and flavors. You need lots and lots of both. Chewy, crunchy, sweet, and spicy. Each bite should be different from the last.


This salad hits all those notes and more, so much more. I have a new cookbook, Jerusalem. I highly recommend it (This is not a paid advertisement for Jerusalem). It's Middle Eastern cooking, but made really accessible. Nothing is super mysterious or hard to find. Go. And. Get. It. Now!!


My other favorite thing about the salad is that it is made up of things that are mostly found in my fridge and pantry. Lemons, check. Stale pita bread, check! Slivered almonds, check! Making this an easy side salad or main meal any day of the week. Since discovering the salad I have started keeping my leftover pita in the freezer. Whenever the urge for this salad happens (which is a lot), I just have to grab my frozen stale pita's and it's go time!


I am also currently obsessing over these slivered honey roasted almonds from Trader Joe's. Holy sweet mother of the baby Jesus. These babies are a-mazing!! Another item you should Go. Get. Right. Now!! Ok, I'll stop that now. Pinky promise.


What? Is 4 partially opened bags of the same type of almond too much? I mean, what if I ran out? That would be a tragedy. I'd have to go to the store...again. It's not like I don't already go to the grocery like way waaaay to much to begin with!


Date and Pita Salad
Serves 2

2 Pita's, stale or toasted
4-5 Dates
1/4 Red onion
2 Tbsp Red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp Sumac
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Pepper
1/2  3/4 tsp Garlic powder
1 Lemon
1 Tbsp Butter
3 Tbsp Olive oil
1 oz Goat cheese
1 handful of Spinach
1/2 cup Slivered almonds

1. Remove the pits from the dates and roughly chop. Thinly slice the red onion and add to the bowl with the dates. Pour the red wine (or white wine or champagne) vinegar over the dates and onions. Allow them to sit for at least 20 minutes. Discard the vinegar before serving.
2. Chop the pita bread into cubes. I like to cut in half, fourths, then sliver the fourths, and chop the remaining slivers of pita into neat squares. I also am ever so slightly Type A, please excuse me. Thank you.
3. In a medium sized pan heat the butter and 1 Tbsp olive oil on medium-low til the butter has melted. Add the pita cubes and toss in the butter and olive oil. Once fully coated add the salt, pepper, garlic, and sumac. Toss the pita cubes until fully coated. This is where the salad will get it's flavor from so feel free to go a little crazy with the seasonings! Allow the pita cubes to cook until crispy. I like to let a few pita cubes remain a little chewy. This takes about 5-7 minutes.
4. In a bowl place your spinach. Add the crispy pita cubes, dates, and onions. Throw in a good handful of slivered almonds. Toss the salad well. Squeeze the juice of 1 lemon and drizzle in 1-2 Tbsp of olive oil. Toss well again. Taste. Add more seasonings, lemon juice, or olive oil as needed.
5. At the very end crumble in an ounce of goat cheese.
6. Enjoy!!

Variations:
1. Goat cheese is optional, but really, when is goat cheese optional? Try never.
2. Throw some chicken, fish, or chick pea's for a protein boost.

 

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