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Greek Flavors to Enjoy at Lunch, Hold the Mayo

As the warmer temperatures begin settling in, refreshing salads and sandwiches with plenty of vegetables added are a great choice for a healthy lunch. Combine veggies with lean protein and some key Greek ingredients for additional flavor, and hold the mayo.

Greek Tuna Salad

2 cans tuna in oil, drained
1 cucumber, chopped
1 small red onion, diced
1 cup roasted red peppers, chopped
1/2 cup pepperocini, diced
1/3 cup parsley, finely chopped
1-2 small plum tomatoes, chopped
2 teaspoons Greek capers
2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained
1/2 avocado, diced
Greek sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the dressing:
2 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon Greek dried oregano
Pinch Greek sea salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper

In a large salad bowl, stir together the tuna, cucumber, onion, roasted red peppers, pepperoncini, parsley, tomatoes, capers, chickpeas, avocado, salt and pepper and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, the dry mustard, oregano, salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients and toss to coat evenly. Taste and adjust seasoning as preferred. Serve as a salad, a sandwich, or with the cooked pasta of your choice, or with quinoa.

Chicken Salad with Greek Yogurt

1 cup Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Greek sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 rotisserie chicken, meat cut into cubes
4 stalks celery, diced
1 bunch scallions, sliced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 small to medium cucumber, diced
3 red, yellow or orange bell peppers, cut in half, seeds removed

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the Greek yogurt, mustard, and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper to taste and then stir in the parsley. Add the chicken, celery, scallions, tomatoes, and cucumbers. Stir well to combine. Divide the chicken salad among the bell pepper halves, serve with toasted pita or fresh bread.

Chickpea Lettuce Wraps with Tahini Dressing

Revithia, chickpeas. Photo by Deryn Macey, via Unsplash
Revithia, chickpeas. Photo by Deryn Macey, via Unsplash

1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 cup lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
1/2 teaspoon Greek sea salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
4 cups cooked chickpeas, drained
1/2 cup sliced jarred roasted red peppers, drained
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
12 large Bibb lettuce leaves
1/4 cup toasted almonds, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Whisk tahini, oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and paprika together in a large bowl. Add the chickpeas, peppers and onions. Toss to coat. Divide the chickpea mixture among the lettuce leaves (about 1/3 cup each). Top with almonds and parsley. Wrap the lettuce leaves around the filling and enjoy.

Tomato and Feta Sandwich

(Photo by Eurokinissi/ Yiannis Panagopoulos)
Photo by Eurokinissi/ Yiannis Panagopoulos

Fresh bread, in thick slices
Greek extra virgin olive oil
Fresh ripe tomato, sliced
Greek sea salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
Feta, Dodonis, cut into slabs
Greek dried oregano

Toast the thick slices of bread. Drizzle with olive oil and add the tomato slices, salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Top with a slab of feta, a pinch of the oregano, and drizzle with additional olive oil. Serve immediately.


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