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Food

Refreshing Salads to Enjoy for Lunch or Dinner

Salads are a great way to incorporate the freshest vegetables of the season into your diet. Try the following as accompaniments for your favorite grilled meats at your next cookout or as a refreshing, light, and healthy lunch or dinner.

Zucchini and Cabbage Salad

3 large zucchini (about 2 pounds, total), coarsely shredded

1/2 teaspoon Greek sea salt, divided

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, plus more for serving

1 cup Greek yogurt

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons Greek honey

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

4 cups shredded cabbage

1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds

Place the zucchini in a strainer lined with a clean dish towel. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and stir to combine. Wrap towel around zucchini and press gently. Set aside for the zucchini to drain for 15- 20 minutes, then squeeze out the excess moisture. In a large bowl, stir together the dill, yogurt, lemon juice, honey, pepper, garlic, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Add the zucchini and cabbage to the yogurt mixture and stir to combine. Top with toasted pumpkin seeds and additional dill. Serve immediately.

Orzo Salad with Squash and Zucchini

Orzo salad. Photo by Eleni Sakellis
Orzo salad. (Photo by Eleni Sakellis)

1 package (16 ounces) orzo pasta

2 small yellow summer squash, halved lengthwise

1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise

1 medium red onion, quartered

8 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil, divided

1/2 teaspoon Greek sea salt, divided

1/4 teaspoon pepper, divided

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1-1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted

Cook orzo according to package directions; drain. Brush yellow squash, zucchini and onion with 2 tablespoons oil; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Grill vegetables, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 in. from heat 10-12 minutes or until lightly charred and tender, turning once. Cool slightly. Cut into 1-in. pieces. In a small bowl, whisk lemon juice and remaining oil until blended. In a large bowl, combine orzo, grilled vegetables, mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and remaining salt and pepper. Add dressing; toss to coat. Sprinkle with pine nuts.

Green Bean Salad with Feta

Green beans. (Photo by Neha Deshmukh, via Unsplash)

2 pounds green beans, trimmed and cut into two-inch pieces

1 small to medium red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 cup feta crumbled

3 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Greek sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or grape tomatoes, whole

Steam the green beans in an inch or two of boiling water to desired tenderness, 3-4 minutes for tender-crisp. Transfer to a bowl, add the thinly sliced red onion, the crumbled feta, the olive oil, vinegar, tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste, and toss the salad. Serve immediately as a side dish or a vegetarian main dish salad with your favorite pasta, if preferred.

Barley Salad

2 cups pearled barley

6 cups water

Greek sea salt

3 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Freshly ground pepper

2 cups cherry tomatoes

1 medium red onion, chopped

1 cup crumbled feta

1/2 cup olives

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint (optional)

In a large saucepan, combine the barley, water, and a pinch of salt and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce to medium and simmer until tender, about 45 minutes.

Allow the cooked barley to cool slightly, then transfer to a salad bowl. Add the olive oil, vinegar, tomatoes, red onion, feta, and olives. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with fresh mint, if using. Drizzle with additional olive oil, if preferred. Serve immediately.

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