In fair Middle East, where we lay our scene, there is a dish that any traveler or local would rave about – the Fattoush Salad. But what makes my version of the classic Lebanese Bread Salad stand out is that it features toasted pita bread, which adds a delightful crunchiness to the mix.
As an Israeli chef with a passion for Middle Eastern cuisine, I wanted to create a recipe that honors the traditional ingredients and flavors of Fattoush while also providing a new twist. By using toasted pita instead of plain bread, I have created a bowl salad that not only looks beautiful but is also packed with textures and tastes that will tantalize your palate.
With every bite, you’ll taste the freshness of juicy cucumbers and tomatoes, the tang from lemony chopped parsley, the earthiness of cumin and marjoram, and then finally get to enjoy the crunch from pita chips. Every ingredient plays its part in creating an explosion of flavor in your mouth.
So if you’re ready to impress your guests (or yourself!) with a Middle Eastern salad recipe that’s both healthy and delicious, then let me guide you through how to make my toasted pita salad recipe.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Friends, fellow foodies, and health enthusiasts alike, gather around and lend me your attention. For I am about to share with you a recipe unlike any other – an irresistible toasted pita salad.
The combination of flavors in this dish is nothing short of heavenly. Imagine the crunch of toasted pita bread mixed with the freshness of a garden salad. Add in the zing of fresh lime juice, the depth of cumin, the boldness of marjoram, and the sweetness of honey. Is your mouth not already watering at the very thought?
And let’s not forget about the nutritious elements packed into this salad. The baby spinach leaves alone are already packed with vitamins and minerals, making it one of the most nutrient-dense greens out there. The additions of English cucumbers and juicy tomatoes further enhance the health benefits with their hydrating and antioxidant properties.
But enough about health – what truly sets this salad apart is how versatile it is. It can be enjoyed as a meal on its own, paired with grilled chicken or lamb for a heartier meal, or stuffed into pita pockets for a portable lunch option.
So why will you love this recipe? Because not only will it tantalize your taste buds and nourish your body, but it will also bring you an unforgettable culinary experience that transcends cultures and cuisines. Don’t just take my word for it, try it for yourself and discover why this toasted pita salad is a must-try item on any discerning foodie’s menu.
Here is the list of ingredients you will need for our delicious Toasted Pita Salad Recipe:
- 2 pitas
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon za’atar
- 1 cup baby spinach
- 2 salad greens (such as kale)
- 2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
- 1 English cucumber, diced
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 4 flat leaf parsley sprigs, chopped
- 4 marjoram sprigs, chopped
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Freshly squeezed juice of 1 lime
- 1 teaspoon honey
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
(feel free to add any of these optional add-ins to your salad!)
– Crumbled feta cheese (goat or sheep)
– Toasted pita chips or baked pita chips
– Roasted chickpeas or beans (such as cannellini or butter beans)
Make sure to have all of these ingredients ready to go before starting to prepare the recipe.
The Recipe How-To
Now that we have all our ingredients ready, let me guide you through the step-by-step process of making my delicious Toasted Pita Salad.
Step 1: Toast the Pita
- Preheat your oven to 375°F.
- Cut 2 pitas into bite-sized pieces and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon za’atar.
- Spread the pita pieces in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.
- Remove from the oven and let them cool.
Step 2: Chop the Vegetables
- Finely chop 1/4 cup red onion and place it in a small bowl of ice water while you prepare the other ingredients.
- Dice 2 tomatoes and remove the seeds.
- Cut 1 English cucumber in half lengthwise and then into thin slices.
- Roughly chop 2 cups baby spinach into bite-sized pieces.
Step 3: Make the Dressing
- In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 1 teaspoon honey, 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper until well combined.
Step 4: Assemble the Salad
- In a large bowl, combine the cooled toasted pita chips, chopped vegetables (onion, tomatoes, cucumber), and chopped salad greens (spinach, flat-leaf parsley, marjoram).
- Drain the red onion from the ice water and add it to the bowl.
- Crumble feta cheese on top of the salad (optional).
- Pour the dressing over the salad and toss everything together until well coated.
Serve immediately for optimal crunchiness. Enjoy this delicious salad as a light lunch or as a side dish with grilled chicken or lamb.
Substitutions and Variations
Hark! If thou wishest to deviate from the original recipe, I shall guide thee with alternate ingredients and methods of preparation.
1. Greens Galore: While the recipe suggests baby spinach, switch it up and use kale or arugula for a peppery bite. You may also opt to add lettuce or mixed greens for more depth in flavor.
2. Crunchy Veggies: Instead of red onion, use shallots or scallions for additional sweetness. In lieu of English cucumbers, you may utilize other types such as pickling or Persian cucumbers.
3. Tomato Tango: If thou prefer a saucy texture, use cherry tomatoes instead of diced ones To add some flair in flavour, try using sun-dried tomatoes for an extra burst of flavor.
4. Parmesan Power: Instead of feta cheese, swap it with parmesan for an added umami kick. If thou follow a vegan diet or abstain from dairy products, you may use nutritional yeast as an alternative.
5. Breads Behaving Differently: The toasted pita may be swapped with naan bread, flatbread or even croutons! For gluten-free options consider using cornbread instead.
6. Toppers and Dressings: Feel free to add roasted chickpeas or nuts such as pine nuts, pistachios or almonds to the salad to boost its crunch factor. To mix things up in terms of dressing, use tahini or balsamic vinaigrette instead If you’re looking to heat things up a little bit more add some roasted red pepper sauce or hot sauce to your dressing!
Be bold explorers and feel free to experiment with different combinations of ingredients thy palate desires.
Farewell until we meet again!
Serving and Pairing
Thou can serve this toasted pita salad in various ways. Thou can create a pita bowl salad with the toasted pita on the base or alternatively, toss the ingredients with the dressing and make a chopped salad. If thou wishes to add more crunch to thy salad, sprinkle some pita chips over it or crumble some feta cheese.
This Middle Eastern bread salad pairs well with grilled meat like lamb or chicken. It also complements a Greek salad for a side dish or a light lunch. If thou art looking for a heartier meal, pair this salad with roasted chickpeas or baked pita pockets filled with sliced cucumbers and tomatoes.
For a vegetarian option, serve this kale salad toasted with a lemony chopped bell pepper pan sauce or as a bean salad by adding black beans or kidney beans. The possibilities are endless; this toasted pita salad is so versatile that it can be enjoyed as a snack, appetizer, side dish, or main course.
I do recommend serving this recipe immediately after making it to keep the toasted pita crunchy and fresh. This way, thy guests will be able to enjoy all the flavors mingled together in every bite.
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
In the world of culinary delight, sometimes we need a bit of convenience to ease the process. And this recipe is all about that – convenience and ease! When it comes to meal prep, this Toasted Pita Salad Recipe is super friendly, with a promise of deliciousness even days after preparation.
If you’re hosting a big event or just wanting to make an extra-large batch, this recipe is perfect for making ahead. You can assemble it completely, minus the dressing, a day in advance and store in an air-tight container in the fridge. When ready to serve, just give the dressing a good shake and add it to the salad right before serving.
The easiest way to store leftover pita salad is by keeping it refrigerated in an airtight container. It can be stored for up to 3 days safely. However, it’s important to note that the toasted pita will lose its crunch over time as it soaks up moisture from the other ingredients.
If you need/want to reheat your salad without making it too soggy, heat your pita chips separately by placing them on a baking sheet and warming them up in the oven for about 10 minutes or until heated through. You can also reheat leftovers quickly in the microwave, but be sure not to overdo it as this may make the vegetables lose their crispiness.
Overall, this recipe has fantastic storage options which allow you to have healthy and delicious meals ready whenever you need them. So go ahead and prepare a large batch today!
Tips for Perfect Results
Great job so far! Now that you understand how to make my delicious toasted pita salad, let me share with you some of my tips for achieving perfect results every time.
First and foremost, make sure your pita bread is fresh. Stale pita bread will result in a tough and unpleasant texture once toasted, which can ruin the overall dish. Ideally, use freshly-baked or store-bought pita bread that’s still soft and pliable.
When you’re toasting the pita bread, be careful not to burn it. If it gets too dark and crispy, it can become brittle and hard to eat. Keep an eye on it as it cooks, flipping it every so often until it’s a nice golden brown.
Another important tip is to cut all your vegetables into uniform bite-sized pieces. This ensures each forkful has a good balance of flavors and textures. Plus, it just looks more visually appealing.
Don’t skimp on the dressing! A well-dressed salad ties all the elements together and makes every bite taste amazing. When making the dressing, whisk all the ingredients together thoroughly until they’re fully emulsified. This will create a smooth and cohesive dressing that coats every ingredient evenly.
Finally, consider adding some protein if you want to make this salad into a complete meal. Grilled chicken or shrimp would be a great addition, as would roasted chickpeas or seasoned tofu for vegetarians.
By following these tips, you’ll be able to create a delicious toasted pita salad with ease. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different ingredient substitutions or variations either – that’s what cooking is all about!
And now, let us address some frequently asked questions about this tasty Toasted Pita Salad Recipe. If you’ve been wondering about ingredient substitutions, how long the salad will last in the fridge or any further doubts, keep reading! We’ve got you covered.
Should you toast pita bread?
Looking for a heartier option than typical toast? Try toasting up some pita bread in the oven or toaster! Not only does it make for a more satisfying bite, but it can also be topped with a variety of spreads such as jam, butter, or hummus for a nutritious breakfast or snack.
Can you toast pita bread in a toaster?
To start off, we need to prep the pitta bread. Simply pop them into the toaster for about 30 seconds to a minute, until they are slightly puffed up but not yet crispy.
How do you fill pita pockets?
When working with pita bread, it is recommended to create a pocket for filling by trimming a 1 ½” opening from the top instead of going halfway through. Take that trimmed piece and insert it into the bottom of the pocket before filling it with your favorite ingredients. This technique not only helps secure your filling from spilling, but also provides a protective layer making your pita bread more resistant to tear. It’s like giving your pita a bulletproof vest!
Can you eat pita bread cold?
The Soft Pittas are a versatile treat that can be relished in both cold and toasted forms, and can be paired with a variety of delectable flavor mixtures.
In conclusion, the Toasted Pita Salad Recipe is a perfect dish for anyone who wants to enjoy a truly exceptional Middle Eastern culinary experience. This simple yet delicious dish is easy to prepare and can be adjusted to suit any taste. With its zesty lemony dressing, crunchy pita chips, and fresh vegetables, this salad will delight your senses with every bite.
The recipe has been carefully crafted to ensure that you end up with an incredible bowl of salad that is sure to satisfy your taste buds. Whether you are looking for a delicious side dish or a light meal that you can enjoy any time of day, the Toasted Pita Salad Recipe is the way to go.
So go ahead and try this wonderful recipe for yourself – once you do, you’ll wonder how you ever got by without it! Trust me; your taste buds will thank you.
Toasted Pita Salad Recipe
- 12 inches pita bread, split in half horizontally
- 3 cups tomatoes, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups English cucumbers, chopped
- 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup marjoram, chopped (may use oregano for a stronger taste)
- 2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
- 4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Place pitas on a biking sheet; bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until crisp. Cool completely. Break into small pieces.
- Combine tomato and next 4 ingredients (through parsley) in a large bowl.
- Combine lime juice and remaining ingredients in a small bowl and stir with a whisk. Pour juice mixture over tomato mixture; toss gently.
- Add pita pieces to bowl; toss gently.
- Let stand 10 minutes before serving.