This salad was served at a sheva brachos in Cleveland last year, which my friend, an aunt of the chassan, attended. When she told me about the fantastic salad, she also mentioned nonchalantly that the young couple was coming to Israel and would be temporarily homeless until their apartment was available. I offered my guest room to the new couple (whom I had never met!) and we ended up hosting them for three weeks! Anyway, back to the salad: After my friend's insistence that I try it, I finally acquiesced. What can I say; it really is delicious! The dressing is superb and the crackers add a good crunch to the dish. By the way, mazel tov to the chassan and kallah of my story, Yosef and Layah, on the birth of a baby girl!
- 1 pkg. cut-up lettuce (a mix is fine) -
- 1 bag romaine lettuce cut up (or torn by hand) -
- generous handful grape or cherry tomatoes, cut in half -
- 4 cucumbers, diced -
- approx. 5 sesame flatbread crackers, broken into small pieces -
- 1 clove garlic (fresh or frozen) or 1½ tsp garlic powder -
- 1 Tbsp sugar (I prefer light brown) -
- ½ cup oil (see note) -
- squeeze of mustard (a drop) -
- 1 tsp soy sauce -
- 2 tsp vinegar -
- ¾ tsp salt -
- pepper to taste -
Mix salad ingredients in a large bowl. You can add the crackers at this point, or else you can use them as a garnish.
Mix all dressing ingredients together. Pour dressing over salad right before serving, or serve it on the side. This dish looks especially festive served on individual plates with the dressing and crackers in separate bowls/serving pieces in the center of the table. You can be creative with the cucumbers and cut them into waffle shapes (using a special salad cutter) or matchsticks (with an "alligator").
TIP: If flatbread crackers are unavailable, use any crispy, crunchy cracker of your choice. A good second choice (in Israel) is Osem Lachmit crackers. We especially like the onion-flavored ones.
TIP: If cherry or grape tomatoes are not available, use firm red tomatoes. Slicing them with an egg slicer insures even thin slices.
TIP: The dressing should be sufficient to dress the quantities of vegetables listed in the recipe. However, it's worthwhile to double or triple the dressing, because it can keep in the fridge for weeks.
Note: For those of us who are watching our fat intake, modify the dressing as follows: instead of ½ cup of oil, use 1 Tbsp oil (this is not a mistake!) and 7 Tbsp water. I make it this way all the time and it's scrumptious like this. The flavor is not compromised at all!
This recipe was featured in Mishpacha Magazine's Family First, February 2008.