Sometimes I like to play this game in winter where I turn on my space heater, put on reggae music and pretend it’s not frigid and frightening outside. If I were an animal, I might be a bear considering I have a innate desire to hibernate when temperatures drop, sidewalks turn into ice skating rinks, and my legs start to look like alligator tails. During one of these recent exercises in wistful imagination, I decided that creating a summery salad in the dead of winter would make me feel just a little bit brighter on what was an otherwise gloomy day.
Cucumber met feta. Feta met dill. Dill danced with yogurt, lemon and garlic. What resulted was an easy, tasty and refreshing January-denial salad. Dill does have its winter merits as it’s loaded with immune system-boosting vitamins A and C. I hope this recipe transports you to a sunny beach somewhere and leaves you feeling nourished, both body and soul.
Cucumber Feta Salad with Lemony-Dill Dressing
[makes approx. 6 side-dish servings]
- 1 cup of feta cubes
- 5 small Persian cucumbers (or 2 regular)
- ¼ cup plain yogurt (I used nonfat)
- 2 small cloves of garlic (or 1 big)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- ¼ cup fresh dill
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Cut cucumbers into half rounds (or however you like your bite-size pieces to look). Toss together in a large bowl with feta cubes*.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, minced garlic, chopped dill, olive oil and black pepper to taste. Resist any temptation to add salt as feta is quite salty already.
- Add dressing to feta and cucumber and toss to combine.
- Top with fresh dill and a few cherry or grape tomatoes if you have them on hand. Bon apetit!
*Note: I used block feta, which is cheaper and holds its shape better than pre-cut or crumbled feta. The block I cut up was about 3 cubic inches.