December 7, 2022

It’s keto kosher!

A traditional Greek salad is an extremely keto-friendly meal. Plus, it’s remarkably healthy for you and tastes delicious. Before diving into making it, let’s get some background.

Totally Natural and Delightful

Outside of Greece, as much as inside, one of the most well-known Greek foods is the Greek salad. Due to the increased availability of tomatoes in the 19th century, Greek salad became a popular and essential salad dish in Greek cuisine. Its origins may be traced back to this period. In point of fact, Greek salad has emerged as a popular option all over the world. Salads are among tourists’ most often requested dishes when they come to Greece. Not only are they fresh and healthful, but they are also really mouthwatering.

In spite of the fact that Greek salad is not among the most historically significant Greek foods, its popularity among both foreign visitors and inhabitants continues to grow. 

Ingredients

The traditional Greek salad, also known as “Horiatiki” (which literally translates to “village or peasant salad”) in Greek, is essentially a combination of tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, green peppers, olives, and feta cheese that is dressed in olive oil and sprinkled with oregano. The salad is served with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of oregano. Other common additions include bell peppers, berries, and capers, particularly well-liked in the Dodecanese Islands. Capers are a regional specialty.

Reread the list of the components.

Have you made the observation that there is not any lettuce in there? In contrast to the traditional Greek salads served in the West, typical Greek salads served in Greece do not include lettuce. Of any kind. In addition, a Greek salad that is made in Greece will not be the same as a Greek salad created in another country. For instance, in the United States, a “Greek salad” can consist of lettuce with other elements influenced by Greek cuisine. Beets are a common component of “Greek salad” in the Detroit area, although potato salad is more common in the Tampa Bay region. You can find Cypriot salad on the island of Cyprus, which is located near Greece. Which has components that are comparable to those found in a classic Greek salad but furthermore include:

  • Tomatoes that are finely chopped.
  • Flat-leaf parsley.
  • Caper leaves.
  • Maybe red wine vinegar.

The Dos and Don’ts of the Greek Salad

There is not a single leafy green vegetable, even lettuce. Instead of cutting the tomato and cucumber into small cubes, you should slice them into pretty large pieces. Instead of cutting the feta cheese into cubes, a single large piece or a few smaller pieces, depending on how much you want, are placed on top of the salad.

The classic Greek salad does not include any form of red pepper. Instead of pita, bread is included in the serving of the salad. A small bowl is used to serve the salad; a deep bowl is not appropriate for this dish. 

There is a history of tomato seeds in Europe, most prominently evident in Italian history. Tomato seeds were originally transported to Spain from South America by the Conquistadors during their expedition to the New World. From there, they moved to Italy, and by the year 1818, they had made their way to Greece, which at the time, was a part of the Ottoman Empire. During that period, people had a negative perception of this fruit, which was only used for decorative purposes. The island of Syros is credited with being the birthplace of tomato cultivation in Greece. In a short amount of time after that, Santorini became the location that pioneered the cultivation of the small waterless tomato. To this day, the fertile volcanic soil of Santorini has allowed these tomatoes to continue to flourish. Before tomatoes became a common ingredient in Greek cooking, Nauplion, Greece, was home to the world’s first tomato canning facility, which opened in 1915.

There is a striking similarity between the components of a Greek salad and those that a Greek farmer would typically keep on hand. As a result, it is commonly believed that Greek salad was a breakfast or lunch served to farmers and that it gained popularity due to its origin. 

Just remember

As in all things keto, the key is to not improvise additions that may tip the scales when it comes to sugars, starches, and carbs. Croutons, for instance, may seem like a marvelous addition to your Greek salad, but unless they are gluten-free and low sodium, they can significantly affect your efforts to stay true to your keto pledge. The same goes for crispy chow mein noodles as a topping or even parmesan cheese that contains lashings of cellulose and other artificial chemicals. Keep your salad simple and fresh, and you’ll be safe.