Saturday, March 16, 2013


This salad is in my top five BEST salads ever. While immersing myself into Middle Eastern cuisine I came across this recipe in Jerusalem the Cookbook. The combinations of flavors are amazing. You give onions and dates a quick pickle in white wine vinegar, toast pita pieces with chopped almonds until brown and mix in ground sumac and chile flakes for a little spice. When ready to serve, toss everything together with fresh spinach, a small amount of olive oil, salt, and some lemon juice.

Give this a will be amazed!
You can find ground sumac at any Middle Eastern Market or on-line.

Baby Spinach Salad with Dates & Almonds
        1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
        1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced 
        3 1/2 oz pitted Medjool dates, quartered lengthwise
   2 tablespoons unsalted butter
   2 tablespoons olive oil
   2 small pitas, roughly torn into 1 1/2-inch pieces
   1/2 cup whole unsalted almonds, coarsely chopped
   2 teaspoons sumac
   1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
   5 ounces baby spinach leaves
   2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Put the vinegar, onion, and dates in a small bowl. Add a pinch of salt and mix well with your hands. Leave to marinate for 20 minutes, then drain away any residual vinegar and discard.

Meanwhile, heat the butter and half of the olive oil in a medium frying pan over medium heat. Add the pita and almonds and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring all of the time, until the pita is crunchy and golden brown. Remove from the heat and mix in the sumac, red pepper flakes, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Set aside to cool.

When you are ready to serve, toss the spinach leaves with the pita mix in a large mixing bowl. Add the dates and red onion, the remaining olive oil, the lemon juice, and another pinch of salt. Taste for seasoning and serve immediately.

Serves 4

Recipe from Jerusalem a Cookbook

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