Kale fatoush salad is our superfood version of this traditional Middle Eastern favourite bursting with nutrients and so satisfying it will keep you going all day long.
We have a little problem in our family, half love onions the other half can’t stand to even have an onion touching their food.
Which was a problem when it came to making this salad as I don’t think fatoush really tastes like fatoush without the spicy bite that comes from adding this pungent allium to this salad.
How to get around this dilemma – I served the onions on the side and kept everyone happy ?.
This fatoush salad pairs well with most meals, particularly with anything Middle Eastern such as kebabs, falafels or spicy chicken. But I just love serving this salad at our big family barbecues as it is so easy to make a huge batch and leave it in the fridge until you are ready to serve. Leftovers are never a problem as it keeps so well and can be enjoyed throughout the week.
What’s in traditional fatoush?
Traditional fatoush was a delicious way to use up leftover pita bread, it is made with chopped romaine/cos lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, radishes, onions, herbs and fried bread which are all dressed in olive oil, lemon dressing with some sumac added.
Our version replaces the lettuce with nutrient-dense kale and we bake the bread in the oven until golden brown instead of frying it.
How to make it traditional
To make a traditional fatoush all you have to do is replace the kale with one medium-sized cos/romaine lettuce and fry your pita in some olive oil.
Do I need to add the sumac?
Sumac is a dark purple, Middle Eastern spice that has a tangy lemony taste that is less tart than lemon juice.
You should be able to find it in the spice section of most supermarkets but can be substituted in this fatoush recipe with the zest of one medium-sized lemon.
How to make fatoush
1GRILL PITA AND VINAIGRETTE
Heat your grill and place the pita bread underneath until golden brown on each side. Approximately 2-3 minutes each side. When done, leave on the side to cool.
To fry the pita for traditional fatoush – heat some olive oil in a large pan, tear the pita bread into bite-sized pieces and fry until golden brown, add some sea salt, black pepper and some sumac while it is frying for an additional hit of flavour.
Place all the vinaigrette ingredients in a glass jar, season with some salt and pepper then shake until emulsified.
Carefully wash the kale to remove any dirt. Remove the stems from the kale and discard them. Shred the kale thinly, then transfer to a mixing bowl, pour the vinaigrette over the kale and massage for at least three minutes.
Rinse your vegetables well under cold running water and pat them dry.
Cut your mini Romas in half, trim your radishes and slice thinly (mandoline/v-slicers are great for this).
Trim and peel your cucumber leaving alternative green strips then cut into half-moons.
Remove the core and seeds from the red capsicum (pepper) and chop into small dice.
Trim your onion, remove the papery skin and chop into small dice.
Add all the chopped vegetables to your kale.
Wash your herbs and either pat or spin dry, cut off the stems from your parsley and roughly chop. Pick the leaves from your mint and roughly chop, then add them to your mixing bowl.
In your bowl with your kale, veg, and herbs season with some salt and pepper, sprinkle some additional sumac on top and toss until everything is well combined. Taste and adjust seasonings according to your taste.
Keep your salad in the fridge until you are ready to serve then, just before serving, snap the pita bread into medium-sized pieces and stir through your salad, reserving a few pieces for a garnish.
Arrange the salad in a large salad bowl, scatter the reserved pita on top. Serve and enjoy!.
Some tips and food prep ideas for fatoush.
- This salad can be made the day before without the pita and kept in the fridge until you are ready to serve it on the day. All you need to do is to drain off any liquid that has formed and add the pita just before serving.
- You can toast the pita the day before and keep it in an air-tight container but if you are going to make it the traditional way with the fried the pita crisps do fry them on the day.
- Of course, you can make the dressing several days ahead and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge.
- Fatoush is just perfect to food prep for your weekday lunches as it keeps well in the fridge and is substantial enough to keep you energised throughout the day. Just keep the pita bread in an air-tight container to add on top at the last minute.
- You can add any form of protein that you like such as crumbled feta, kofta, meat or chicken skewers or some falafel would be fantastic as a vegetarian option.
(Times are an estimate and will depend on your skill level)
- 240 grams kale (approximately ½ bunch or use 1 cos/romaine lettuce to make it traditional)
- 450 grams mini Roma tomatoes (approximately 1 large or 2 small punnets)
- 120 grams radish (approximately 1 small bunch)
- 150 grams Lebanese cucumber (approximately 1 medium)
- 100 grams red capsicum (bell pepper) (approximately 1 small)
- 1 small red onion (optional)
- 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley (2 cup chopped parsley leaves)
- 1 bunch chopped mint (1 cup chopped mint leaves)
- 1 pita bread
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1-2 tsps Sumac
To make the pita and vinaigrette…
- Heat your grill and place the pita bread underneath until golden brown on each side. Approximately 2-3 minutes each side. When done, place to one side to cool.
- To fry the pita in the traditional way heat some olive oil in a large pan, tear the pita bread into bite-sized pieces and fry until golden brown, add some sea salt, black pepper and some sumac while it is frying for an additional hit of flavour. 1
- Place all the vinaigrette ingredients in a glass jar and shake until emulsified.
Prep your vegetables…
- Wash all your vegetables carefully to remove any dirt. Remove the stems from the kale and discard them. Shred the kale thinly, then transfer to a mixing bowl, pour the vinaigrette over the kale and massage for at least three minutes.
- Cut off the leaves and bottoms from the radishes and then slice thinly using a mandoline slicer. Add to the bowl with the kale.
- Trim the cucumber then cut into half-moons, add to your bowl.
- Slice the mini Roma tomatoes in half, add to your bowl.
- Remove the core from the red capsicum, then cut into small thin strips, add to your bowl.
- If you are using the onion, remove the papery skin and chop off the top and bottom, cut into small thin strips, add to your bowl.
- Wash your herbs, remove the stems and roughly chop then add to your bowl.
Putting it all together…
- Add the chopped parsley and mint to the bowl with all your veg, season with salt and pepper. Then toss the salad until well combined, taste and adjust seasonings according to your taste.
- Just before serving, snap the pita bread into medium-sized pieces and stir through your salad, reserve a few pieces for a garnish.
- Arrange the salad in a large salad bowl, scatter the reserved pita on top. Serve and enjoy!.
- The nutritional panel does not include the fried pita just the toasted pita bread.