Armenian Chopped Salad

I’m not much of a salad eater, although I should be. We all should be eating salad every day to take advantage of all those vitamins and all that fiber.

Plus, salad helps fill you up so you don’t overload on carbs and fats and thick steaks and ice cream and everything else that tastes so much better than stupid lettuce…

Just kidding! Well, no I’m not.

Not about lettuce, anyway. Lettuce bores me. Even the stuff that costs too much to call lettuce. This is because I’m Armenian. Robyn, of course, is also Armenian and she likes lettuce just fine. She thinks I’m just odd.

Well, maybe. But while I’ve never been to Armenia, I have it on good authority that there’s no lettuce in a real Armenian salad.

When you think about it, there wasn’t much point cultivating lettuce when the hills were covered in a fresh, wild greens free for the picking. Unfortunately, there are no wild salad greens in the hills near our house. In fact, there are no hills.

But the rest of the traditional Armenian salad ingredients are easy to come by: cucumbers, peppers, onions, parsley and tomatoes. What makes them Armenian?

Technique, for one thing. Everything should be chopped and about the same size. This isn’t just for looks. Dicing the veggies releases more of the juices into a natural dressing. You could be very satisfied adding nothing but perhaps a dash of salt.

Herbs are also very Armenian, lending an echo of those wild greens. Basil, dill, fresh mint — what’s growing in your yard?

Now add a squeeze of lemon — or sumac for a real Old Country touch. And a splash of olive oil.

That’s it. No trick at all.

This is a salad even I’ll eat. It’s so good, I don’t even mind adding in some lettuce, just to make my wife happy.

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  1. Bonnie May 11, 2009 at 12:58 am

    Very amusing. Didn’t know about your aversion to lettuce, Doug. What you are describing sounds like what I’ve come to think of as a “chopped salad.” The “recipe” — well, it’s not exactly a recipe; maybe more of a method — has inspiring me to try an alternative to a conventional tossed salad.

  2. Anonymous April 23, 2011 at 4:53 am

    hey you dont have your recipe so we can make it and try it so we can post a comment

  3. Anonymous April 23, 2011 at 4:54 am

    hey put down your recipe so we can make it and try it so we can write you a comment

  4. Robyn April 23, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    If you look closely, the recipe above reads like a story. Here is an easier-to-follow format.Hope this helps!

    Armenian Salad Ingredients:
    cucumbers, peppers, onions, parsley and tomatoes, lettuce of your choice(optional)
    The amounts of each ingredient used depends on your preference and how many people you're serving.
    Dice everything about the same size.The veggies release their juices to create a natural dressing. Sprinkle a little salt. Toss.
    Now add a squeeze of lemon — or sumac for a real Old Country touch. And a splash of olive oil. Gently toss and serve.

  5. Anonymous August 8, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Please, lavash recipe. Thanks. Adolfo from Argentina.


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