Fattoush is a bread and vegetable salad--usually using fried or toasted flat bread, seasonal veggies and sumac. This one differs in that it has a buttermilk-like dressing and the bread is not fried. I was able to use all local veggies and herbs--little baby cucumbers, small cherry tomatoes and both red and pink radishes. I also added a can of chickpeas to the mix--it makes it more of a meal salad, nice for the warm and humid days we have been having this week.
Jerusalem says, "This fabulous salad is probably Sami's mother's creation; Sami can't recall anyone else in the neighborhood making it. She called it fattoush, which is true only to the extent that it includes chopped vegetable and bread. She added a kind of homemade buttermilk and didn't fry her bread which makes it terribly comforting."
Adapted from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi & Sami Tamimi
scant 1 cup/200g Greek yogurt and 3/4 cup + 2 Tbs/ 200ml full-fat milk, or 1 2/3 cups /400ml buttermilk (replacing both yogurt and milk)
2 large stale Turkish flatbread or naan
3 large tomatoes, cut into large dice (I used cherry tomatoes)
3 1/2 oz /100g radishes, thinly sliced
3 Lebanese or mini cucumbers, peeled and chopped into large dice
2 green onions, thinly sliced
(I added one can of garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained)
1/2 oz /15g mint, roughly chopped
scant 1 oz /25g flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1 Tbsp dried mint
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup/60ml olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
2 tbsp cider or white wine vinegar
3/4 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
1 tbsp sumac or more to taste, to garnish
If using yogurt and milk, start at least three hours and up to a day in advance by placing both in a bowl. Whisk well and leave in a cool place or in the fridge until bubbles form on the surface. What you get is a kind of homemade buttermilk, but less sour.
Tear the bread into bite-size pieces and place in a large mixing bowl. Add your fermented yogurt mixture or buttermilk, followed by the rest of the ingredients, mix well and leave for 10 minutes for all the flavours to combine.
Spoon the fattoush into serving bowls, drizzle with olive oil and garnish generously with sumac.
Notes/Results: The crispness of the vegetables, combined with the softened bread and creamy dressing is good--but, when I make it again I will toast the bread. I felt that the garlic naan I used, although stale, was too soft and I missed that crunch from fattoush I have eaten before. I like the flavors of the cooling mint and yogurt with the tang of the lemon, vinegar and the sumac that is sprinkled on top--very refreshing. It is an easy salad to make--it does take extra prep time if you use the yogurt & milk as I did but very quick if you go with the buttermilk. With the garbanzo beans it is satisfying enough as a light lunch or dinner and it was also nice as a side dish for a piece of salmon, roasted with lemon and dill. I will make it again--with the bread toasted.
This is my entry for I Heart Cooking Clubs "Get Back to Your Roots!" theme. You can check out the root veggie-filled recipes everyone made by following the links.