This Middle Eastern salad makes the most of fresh, seasonal vegetables and leftover pita bread. As fattoush is eaten in a number of countries, including Lebanon, Syria, Egypt and Israel, there are many variations on the dish. Our recipe is closest to a traditional Lebanese version.
1 piece stale Lebanese bread, torn into pieces
4 cups flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
2 cups mint leaves, finely chopped
2 Lebanese cucumbers, finely chopped
5 spring onions, thinly sliced
6 vine-ripened tomatoes, seeded, finely chopped
Lemon sumac dressing
80 ml olive oil
80 ml lemon juice
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tsp sumac (see Note)
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Place Lebanese bread on an oven tray and bake for 10 minutes or until crisp. Alternatively, place under a grill preheated to high for 3 minutes each side or until crisp. Set aside to cool.
To make dressing, whisk together all ingredients in a jug until combined. Season with salt and pepper.
Toss remaining ingredients in a bowl. Drizzle with lemon sumac dressing and toss to coat. Season and stand for 10 minutes before serving tossed with crisp bread.
Sumac, available from supermarkets, is a tangy reddish-brown Middle Eastern spice often used in marinades, salads and dressings.
Photography by John Laurie.
As seen in Feast magazine, Issue 11, p20.