Although the temperatures here in London have plummeted I have been eating a lot of different salads and this one has no doubt been inspired by the amount of Turkish tv programmes I have been watching on Netflix! who knew Turkish tv was so good?! We are fortunate to have a lot of excellent Turkish restaurants here in London and this is a staple at all of them – but each restaurant makes it slightly differently. What I love about this salad is that it is quick, tangy and refreshing and can have as much chilli kick as you can handle! served with fresh bread it can be a meal on its own and will get you going back for more!
2 x tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3-4 x large beef tomatoes (you can also use good quality large fresh plum tomatoes)
1-2 x fresh chillies (seeds removed if you don’t want to blow your head off – adapt the level of chilies to your own taste but this salad is meant to be spicy)
1 x large red bell pepper
1 x cucumber – cut into quarters lengthways & seeds removed
1x red onion – finely chopped
1/2 x cup of finely chopped fresh parsley
1x tbsp good quality vinegar (i.e. red wine, white wine or apple cider vinegar)
1 x tbsp tomato puree
1 x tbsp dried mint
sea salt to taste
Bring a pan of water to the boil and carefully put in your tomatoes for a little under a minute – remove them and put them into cold water.
Peel the skin from the tomatoes carefully – this shouldn’t be hard as the boiling water will have lossened the skin. Cut the tomatoes in half and remove the seeds.
Dice the tomatoes as small as possible without them dissolving and place into a large bowl.
Now you can chop the red pepper, onion, chillies and cucumber as finely as you can and add to the finely diced tomatoes.
Add in the olive oil, mint, tomato puree, vinegar and salt and the finely chopped parsley (remove the stalks before chopping).
Mix everything together and taste in order to adjust to your liking – you may want to add in a bit more chilli or salt etc.
Cover with cling film and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. (The flavours will mesh and give you a gorgeous flavour) This is a great salad to make ahead of time when we finally can have friends over! This has the flavours and goodness of the Mediterranean so use the best ingredients your budget will allow.
Fresh bread dipped into this salad is simply one of lives great pleasures 🙂