Greek salad, which in Greek is called Horiatiki salad and means village or peasant salad is a common component of a Greek meal. In Cyprus the salad has more ingredients such as fresh coriander, which is not available in Greece, lettuce and rocket plus of course the other usual ingredients.
Greek salad is always on the Greek table. Years ago tomatoes were only available during summer but now we have them year around and can enjoy this salad any time we like. It can accompany any meal but if you want to eat something light, it can also be a healthy meal on its own.
This village salad is the focal point of the Mediterranean Diet. It has vegetables, tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, onion, protein from the feta and olives and olive oil, which is the main fat used. All these ingredients make a delicious salad and provide us with lots of vitamins and other necessary nutrients.
The olive oil helps to lower cholesterol (LDL) and its antioxidant properties is a shield against heart attacks. In antiquity olive oil was used to cure muscular pains and skin disceases.
On the other hand tomatoes are also a good source of antioxidants and lycopene and the onion is a good source of flavinoids, which again helps to rise the good cholesterol (HDL) and prevent cardiovascular disease.
A usual serving of Greek Salad has about 300 – 400 calories because we add quite a lot of olive oil. You must be extra careful not to mop up those juices with too much bread as it will add up more calaries.
If you are on a diet and want to eat a Greek salad, add a small piece of feta, less olives and less olive oil.
Nutritional value of a salad for one serving:
Calories 400 (Calories from Fat 70)
Fat 8g (Saturated 4g)
Carbohydrate 74g (Dietary Fiber 12g)
DAILY VALUE: Vitamin A 8%; Vitamin C 26%; Calcium 24%; Iron 32
The Cypriot horiatiki is included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste!
The Greek horiatiki Salad
Preparation time: 10 minutes
- 2 tomatoes, sliced
- 1 small cucumber, sliced
- 1 small onion, sliced
- 1 Green bell pepper
- Feta cheese, cut in small cubes
- Black olives from Kalamata
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Wine vinegar
- Freshly ground pepper (optional)