Turkish Salad with Dates and Goat Cheese

turkish 3

One of my favorite cookbooks these days is the book “Plenty”by Yotam Ottolenghi. It has incredible, creative and unusual vegetarian recipes with a middle Eastern touch. I tried most of them and every single one has worked and tasted great. In general, the recipes are not hard, but a bit time consuming, because he is working with lots of different spices and fresh herbs, which often takes more time to prepare. This is a book that will definitely spice up your day and with every recipe you want to try the next one!

I made this Turkish Salad the other day and it was delicious. It is a wonderful combination of flavors. Highly recommended.

The recipe calls for Turkish sheep’s cheese, but since it is a bit hard to find here :), I just substituted it through soft goat cheese, which worked just fine.

For 4 people:

1 1/2 tablespoons of whole almonds (skin on)
6 large Medjool dates
2 1/2 cups of arugula
4 to 5 oz of soft goat cheese
a few leaves of dill
3/4 cup of mixed purple ands green basil leaves and red chard leaves
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses
salt and pepper

Dry roast the almonds at medium heat in a skillet until they are brown.

Halve the dates lengthwise and remove and discard the pit. Cut each in half into four to six long slices.

Spread the arugula over the bottom of each serving dish. On top, build up dates, cheese, dill, basil and red chard, making sure you can clearly see all four elements.

Mix together well the olive oil, pomegranate molasses and some salt and pepper, and drizzle over the salad. Roughly chop up the almonds and sprinkle on top and serve.

turskish salad 2

turkish salad 1

Spinach Salad with Orange Zest Dressing and Toasted Almonds

Fresh, juicy, different, and most importantly: simple!

Here it goes. (For 2 people)

Ingredients:
2 big handfuls of fresh spinach leaves (already washed)
2 tablespoons of almond slices

For the Dressing:
1/2 teaspoon of orange zest
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
2 tablespoons of safflower oil
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 garlic glove
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons of honey
1 tablespoon of apple-juice

Zest the orange.

Orange Zest

Then dry-roast the almond slices in a pan over medium to high heat. Stir the almonds so they don’t burn.

Roasted almonds

For the dressing, add the zest to the lemon juice. Squeeze the garlic through a garlic press and add to the lemon juice with the salt, pepper, honey. Slowly stir in the safflower and olive oil until it emulsifies. Stir in the apple-juice at the end.

Pour the dressing over the spinach, toss and sprinkle with the toasted almonds.
I recently served this salad with Tai vegetables in coconut milk and Basmati Rice.

Spinach Salad