Russian Vegetable Salad
INGREDIENTS
  • Cooking Time: 10-15
  • Servings: 4-5
  • Preparation Time: 10-15
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 1 kirby cucumber
  • 2 scallions or about ⅛ of a medium onion
  • 1/2 bell pepper (cored and seeded)
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • Handful of fresh dill and/or parsley
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic or cider vinegar
DIRECTIONS
  1. Chop all vegetables and herbs into uniform bite-sized pieces and place in a salad bowl.
  2. Add salt, pepper, olive oil, and vinegar.
  3. Mix well.
RECIPE BACKSTORY
At first glance, there seems to be nothing particularly Russian about this salad. These are just chopped up vegetables. However, at a second glance, this is not a typical salad you would get at a local diner. The first distinguishing trait is a lack of lettuce. The reason for this is simple: lettuce was not commonly sold in the former Soviet Union. The vegetables that could almost always be bought were cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions. This is the reason why these are the prevalent ingredients here. The second mark of distinction is the dressing, which is nothing but salt, pepper, oil and vinegar. Unlike the spiced-up orange goo that we in the U.S. are accustomed to, this is the true Russian dressing. The original “Old Country” version of this salad has nothing but cucumbers, tomatoes, dill or parsley, and either onions or scallions. The salad below has been made more appealing, not to mention more nutritious, with the addition of bell peppers and avocado. When made with fresh and crisp vegetables, this salad has an addictive quality that will make you not want to stop eating it. It might even make a toddler want to eat their vegetables, as the photo shows.