This is SUCH a great salad! In my cookbook library is a copy of the amazing Jerusalem cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi, which contains this recipe, but I didn’t think to make it until I saw rave reviews online. So many people were commenting that this was their favourite salad, and now I know what they are talking about. It is my new favourite salad, and I can hardly wait to make it again.
I love the buttery toasted almonds and pita tossed in sumac. The onions (I used red because they are pretty) that are nicely mellowed in a vinegar marinade, along with the dates which become meltingly delicious, and their sweetness is balanced by the onion and vinegar.
I served this with the most delicious Cinnamon Curry Roast Chicken and potatoes. It was plenty of food for four people.
What you need:
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 100g pitted Medjool dates (about 5), quartered lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 small pitas, roughly torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1/2 cup whole unsalted almonds, coarsely chopped
- 2 teaspoons sumac
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 150g baby spinach leaves
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
What you do:
- Place the vinegar, onion, and dates in a small bowl, adding a pinch of salt. Mix well with your hands, then leave to marinate for 20 minutes or more. Drain the extra vinegar
- In a frying pan over medium heat melt the butter and add one tablespoon of olive oil. Add the pita and almonds, stirring to cook them for 5 to 6 minutes. The pita should become crunchy and brown. Remove the pan from the heat and toss in the sumac, red pepper flakes and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Let this cool.
- To prepare the salad toss the spinach with the pita in a large bowl, then add the dates and onion, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Serve right away!