Looking for a fresh, tangy salad with a crunch? Try fattoush, a classic Middle Eastern salad known for its fresh vegetables and sumac topped with pita chips. This salad is the perfect complement with grilled meats, such as kabobs and chicken skewers, or rice pilafs.
Key Vegetable in Authentic Fattoush: Purslane (Verdolaga)
Authentic fattoush has a leafy vegetable called purslane (or verdolaga) that adds a distinct sour flavor. Purslane can be added fresh to salads or sautéed into a stir fry or soup. It contains several vitamins and minerals, specifically vitamin A, C, magnesium and potassium. To prepare the purslane, simply remove the leaves from the stems and rinse well. You can find purslane at most farmers markets, however if you cannot find it you can still make the fattoush salad without the purslane.
Key Spice in Authentic Fattoush: Sumac
Sumac is a dark red powder spice that adds a tangy, lemon flavor to meals. It is commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine, including in fattoush salad, chicken wraps, kabobs, or as a garnish on hummus or rice. You can find sumac online or at any Middle Eastern store. The sumac makes all the difference in fattoush!
Key Ingredient in Authentic Fattoush: Pita Chips
Fattoush is not complete without pita chips. Traditionally small pieces of pita are deep fried and sprinkled onto the salad. You can make your own pita chips as described below or purchase ready-made pita chips at any grocery store. However, it is very easy to make pita chips at home, either in the oven or on the stove top so give it a try!
Authentic Middle Eastern Fattoush Salad with Pita Chips
This fresh, flavorful Authentic Middle Eastern Fattoush Salad with Pita Chips is the perfect complement to any meal!
- 1 heart romaine lettuce chopped
- 3 Persian cucumbers or 1 English cucumber, diced
- 4 ripe Roma tomatoes diced
- 3 green onions both white and green parts chopped
- 2 cups purslane leaves whole
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves chopped
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 tsp sumac
- 1 ½ pita bread cut into 1-inch square pieces or roughly torn into bite-sized pieces
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ tsp sumac optional
To make the pita chips, heat the olive oil in a pan then add the pita pieces. Coat in the oil and toast the pita until golden and crisp. You can add the sumac at this time as well. Be sure not to burn the pita! Remove and set aside onto a plate covered with a paper towel.
In a large bowl combine all the chopped vegetables.
Make the vinaigrette by whisking together the vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt, garlic, and sumac.
Drizzle the vinaigrette onto the salad and mix well.
Add the pita chips onto the salad and serve.
You can make the fattoush recipe ahead of time, just hold off adding the vinaigrette and pita chips until ready to serve.