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Cucumber Substitute for Fattoush

Asked by FaerieBoy. Answered on 7th April 2014

Full question

Hello, I just watched an episode of Forever Summer where you made this Middle Eastern salad with pita, tomato, and cucumber. The only problem is I absolutely loathe cucumber. Is there anything I can easily substitute or am I simply better off making something else?

Our answer

Nigella's book and TV series Forever Summer includes a recipe for roasted, za'atar spiced chicken served with a fattoush salad. However the salad is often eaten as a dish in its own right.

The a fattoush salad is made seasonal salad vegetables combined with crisp toasted or fried pieces of pitta bread. The dressing is usually a slightly sour combination of sumac and lemon juice. Most recipes contain tomato, spring onions (scallions), cucumber and herbs, but you can vary the ingredients according to the season and your own taste. You could try celery, radishes, fennel, green peppers or even shredded crisp lettuce.

If you like the combination of tomatoes and toasted bread then we would also suggest that you try the Italian panazella salad. Nigella gives her own Panazella recipe in her book Kitchen.

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