Refreshing Shirazi salad (or Salad-e Shirazi) with cucumber, peppers, ripe tomatoes, shallots, lemon juice and aromatic herbs. Lovely summer salad with Persian origin that has become a staple dish across the Mediterranean basin. It can be served with any main meal (meat or meatless) or as an entrée.
If you have never tried Shirazi Salad I’m sure you are missing out. It’s simplicity, combined with it’s refreshing taste has quickly become one of our family’s go-to summer salads. This salad is of Persian origin, but has become a widespread dish all across the Mediterranean. The secret to it’s flavour is the combination between a variety of herbs, fruit juice and fresh seasonal produce.
Shirazi Salad – Ingredients (notes)
As any other dish, Shirazi salad has it’s variations. In it’s core however it’s made with cucumbers, tomatoes and red onions (like shallots). The traditional Salad-e Shirazi is made with a verjuice (a sour-y grape and apple juice) that can easily be substituted with fresh lemon/lime juice or even grape juice for a tangy feel.
In the conventional version you can also find fresh/dried mint, sumac spice (which can be bought at an Arab store or Amazon– it has fresh lemon-like taste) and even ground pepper.
The version I usually make (that is featured in this recipe post) does not contain sumac and ground pepper because my kids show no appreciation for these ingredients in a salad. You can however experiment and find what tastes best to you.
It’s also important to note that letting the salad rest for 10 minutes (up to an hour) before consumptions gives it a much deeper flavor. That way the juices of all chopped veggies and other ingredients have time to blend better together. You can leave the salad in the fridge, especially in summer, to get a fresher feel.
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Simple Shirazi Salad Recipe (Salad Shirazi)
- 1 long cucumber, cut in cubes
- 1 large pink tomato , cut in cubes
- 1 red pepper, cut in cubes
- 3 shallots , cut in circles
- 3 tbsp fresh basil leaves, minced
- 3 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
- 2 tbsp fresh mint leaves , minced
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 3 tbsp olive oil, extra virgin
- Wash all vegetables under cold water, peel as needed. Then cut cucumber, tomato and red pepper in small cubes. Place in a large salad bowl.
- Then mince fresh mint, basil and parsley leaves and add to salad bowl. Slice shallots in circles and add to salad as well. Squeeze some lemon/lime juice and pour olive oil.
- Give the salad a good stir and let sit for 10 minutes in the fridge (covered with a cloth/lid or large plate). Letting the salad sit still for a while allows the ingredients to blend well, thus it becomes much more flavorful. Serve and enjoy.
- Sumac spice
- Ground pepper
- Grape juice in spite of lemon juice
- Cherry tomatoes instead of large pink tomato
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