Yours truly is in Greece and researching food in the North Med. It is a bit nippy, compared to Q8, but not so bad really. I met Kostas Rekoumis on my travels in Athena, pictured above and enjoyed a great Byzantine salad.
Greeks will often make cabbage salads in the cold months and the most popular one being the “politiki salata”. Once again “politiki” refers to a Constantinople dish and this salad is just one of the many to be enjoyed by Greeks in all corners of the country.
The trick to making a good slaw or politiki salata is to get some of that raw flavour out of the cabbage and the best way to do that is to concoct a “quick pickle”. A simple salad but one that can easily disappoint if it’s served overly dressed or soggy. Add sugar, salt and vinegar and allow the salad vegetables to cure. After about 15-20 minutes drain the salad and actually squeeze handfuls of the salad to remove excess liquid (and salt and sugar).
The result is a salad that had a proper sweet and sour balance and it’s remarkably still crunchy. Use sea salt, quality wine vinegar and only the best extra-virgin olive oil…Greek!
4 cups of shredded white cabbage
1/2 cup grated carrot
1/2 cup thinly sliced red pepper
1/2 stalk of celery, diced
1 tsp. of sugar
1 tsp. of fine salt
1/4 cup vinegar
approx. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt to taste
Juice of a lemon – here they are just out of this world!
Place the shredded cabbage, carrot, red pepper and celery in a bowl with the sugar, salt and wine vinegar and toss. Allow to cure for 15 minutes (or a bit longer).
Now take handfuls of the salad and place in a strainer and squeeze-dry of excess liquid and place in the bowl. Continue to squeeze the remaining salad then drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and toss.
Adjust seasoning with salt, wine vinegar and lemon, toss once again and serve immediately.