Eating a good Greek salad is like heading off for an epic adventure.
Embarking on an odyssey that includes creamy feta, ripe tomato, olive oil, oregano and (IMO the most important thing) pickled caper leaf guarantees you end up feeling deeply satisfied.
A culinary construction of classic renown, the dish should offer you the same kind of complex simplicity found in a tumultuous Greek myth.
It all begins with the feta. In Greece, they serve it with a big slab on top. The reason for this is simple. The journey should always start here.
You get a sense of where you are headed from the initial taste. Are you off on a journey toward Olympian levels of deliciousness, or a rubbery disappointment “Fake-Zorba” style?? The first bite will tell.
Next can come the tomato, cucumber, olive, onions, green pepper and capers, in whatever order you choose. Just enough great olive oil is needed to meld it all together with a little acidity of your choice. Vinegar, lemon juice, tomato sauce or perhaps nothing at all?
In the ideal salad world, every mouthful brings you closer and closer to the ultimate blend where the cream of the cheese and tang of tomato marry perfectly with the savoury flavours of oregano, perhaps garlic and most certainly caper leaf.
This is the secret to the true Greek Salad Odyssey. Miss the leaf and you miss the highlight of the tour. Capers and their leaves should emerge magically from the bowl, appearing like signposts to guide you on your way.
Capers take the need for adding extra salt away. They should have enough to flavour the whole dish, with extra mineral goodness (including loads of Vitamin K – see below) to round the journey out
Now for the healthy part.
Eating a Greek salad is a fabulous way to get most of the nutrients you need, and is great for people with IBD
The star ingredients are chunks of cucumber, feta, red onions and tomato. Together they provide a great dose of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, protein and fibre to keep you going strong
In Ayurvedic nutrition, these food are associated with the Water element. In simple terms, this means they will greatly assist with peristalsis, provide great fibre for the colon and microbiome, and help with elimination. A slight amount of Fire (courtesy of the capsicum) keeps digestion strong.
Eating a Greek salad a few times a week will help keep your digestive system in peak condition, especially if you have a tendency toward ulcers, gastritis or inflammatory bowel conditions.
This is where the Vitamin K in capers comes in. Researchers have found a high prevalence of Vitamin K and D deficiency in people with inflammatory bowel disease. Vitamin K helps with blood clotting and bone strength. Together the capers and feta provide most of the calcium and K needed to replenish lost reserves.
What is more, the cooling effect of juicy cucumbers, lubricating action of the olive oil and bitter tang of oregano help soothe an overactive digestive tract, literally taking some of the fire out otherwise inflamed linings .
If you do suffer from IBD then go lightly on the peppers, onions, and extra olives. Opt instead for more cucumber, oregano and a little good quality vinegar.
However you take your adventure, remember – Keep the feta FULL FAT.
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I’m a professional astrologer, coach, and wellness consultant, originally from Australia but now travelling the world. Here, the focus is on happiness. I publish great astrology articles, as well as well-researched pieces on nutrition, wellness and Ayurveda drawn from years of clinical experience.