Saturday, 14 September 2013

Last of the Summer Salad

I miss Ukrainian tomatoes. Apologies for a cliche, but the ones you get in the supermarkets in London are never that good. However I grew my own this year and ended up with a decent crop of the sweetest, juiciest, loveliest Gardener's Delights. I made a quick raw veg summer salad with them adding a few other veg. It's a very typical salad you'd have all summer long back home.

Just make sure you use unrefined sunflower oil (see Cooking Essentials) and lots and lots of dill and parsley. To add an autumnal touch, mix in some diced gherkins.

Salads like this are used as a sauce/gravy substitute in the Russian/Ukrainian cuisine. They will typically be served with meat and mash or meat and grains dish, to provide freshness and juiciness. My husband and I often have this salad with sausages.

Summer Raw Veg Salad
(Makes 2 rather generous portions)


15-20 cherry tomatoes or 2-3 ordinary tomatoes (get the best ones you can - ones the vine are usually better)
1/2 cucumber
1 medium sweet pepper - orange or yellow
1/2 small red onion
2 garlic cloves crushed
Lot of dill and parsley
1/2 lemon
a couple of gherkins (optional)
Unrefined sunflower oil (see Cooking Essentials)
Salt and pepper


Chop all the veg into a biggish dice. I quarter cherry tomatoes and chop sweet pepper fairly thinly. You don't want your salad to turn into salsa, but you don't want big pieces either.
Mix all the chopped veg and herbs in a bowl. Add the crushed garlic, lemon juice, generous glugs of sunflower oil, salt and pepper.

Serve with kotlety and mashed potato or buckwheat kasha, or with sausages or any other meat. If you are a vegetarian - try it with mashed potato. I tend to pile it up on top of the mash and delight in the juicy-creamy mixture.

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