As the dramatic finish to a love story that is both too long and too cheesy to narrate here, I recently toured around Europe (more or less) on the back of a motorbike. Our destination: Turkey. Our route: Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia and Bulgaria. Anyone who hasn’t been here yet should go immediately, it’s a beautiful and interesting region.
Foodwise, the conclusion is that people there love love love meat and are not so bothered about vegetables. They sell corn on the cob in every single place that we’ve been to, and in the Balkan area quite a lot of the meat is served with raw onion, but I don’t really think that counts and other than that we’ve not seen a whole lot of greens. It was all right, for a while, but after about a week you do start feeling the lack of essential minerals, and the abundance of proteins.
On our way back to Italy we passed through Greece, and here they did have lots more vegetarian food, but I got addicted to souvlaki, Greek style kebab, which meant yet more meat. I realise I brought this one on myself but Christ, I’ve had more meat in those four weeks than in the past four years. I’m not exaggerating.
Which is why, one day, towards the end of our journey, I went nuts on a Greek salad, I went on a Greek salad high, I was drunk on salad for hours. I ordered it, stating “I am going to eat this whole salad and I will devour its veggie goodness” after which I ate it and raved about it for hours. Even days afterwards I still mumbled occasionally, “That salad was fucking great though… Goddamn fantastic salad…”.
So here we go, Greek salad as I ate it in Rio, a wee town near Patras in the west of Greece, for one hungry and meat-overdosed person:
– half a cucumber
– two tomatoes
– one small red onion
– a green pepper, one of those long thin ones
– a block of feta
– olive oil
Cut the cucumber in half, lengthways, then cut into slices. Cut the tomatoes in wedges. Halve the onion, cut off the ends, peel, then cut into slices. Slice rings out of the pepper. Chuck all into a bowl, mix. Put the block of feta on top, whole or broken into chunks. Then sprinkle over some olive oil. That’s it.
Also, if you want to, slice up a baguette, roast the slices, then sprinkle over some olive oil and rub in some garlic. Tasty business.