Recipe: Fattoush

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Recipe: Fattoush

Dietitian's tip: Fattoush is a traditional Lebanese salad seasoned with sumac, a tart, deep red spice made from the dried berries of the sumac bush. It can be found in Middle Eastern groceries and well-stocked supermarkets.

Serves: 8

Ingredients

For the dressing

  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground sumac (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 7 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 whole-wheat (whole-meal) pita breads, 6 inches in diameter, torn into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 head romaine lettuce, diced (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 2 small cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 red bell pepper (capsicum) seeded and diced
  • 3 green (spring) onions including tender green tops, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley

Directions

To make the dressing, combine the lemon juice, garlic, cumin, sumac (if using), salt, red pepper flakes and black pepper in a blender or a food processor. Process until smooth. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil in a thin stream until emulsified. Set the dressing aside.

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Spread the pita bread pieces in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake until crisp and lightly golden, about 8 minutes. Set aside to cool. In a large bowl, combine the lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, bell pepper, green onions, mint and parsley and toss. Add the dressing and toss lightly to coat evenly. Divide the salad among individual plates. Top with the pita croutons, dividing evenly. Serve immediately.

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