This Tomato Cucumber Salad is a delicious recipe that uses fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers tossed in a light dressing made only with vegetable oil and salt.
Reasons to Try This Recipe
Eastern Europeans love this tomato and cucumber salad. The Greeks and most Mediterranean countries love it too. It is very popular in the Balkan region and for the right reasons.
This salad is easy to make, especially in the summer when tomatoes and cucumbers are in season. Most of the time, onions and peppers are also part of the recipe.
The recipe doesn't call for any lettuce. Also, the dressing is very simple. Vinegar is optional, as the tomatoes are acidic by default and there is no need to add vinegar unless you really want to.
The best tomatoes for this salad are the ones from your own garden or the Farmers Market. These tomatoes actually get to see the sun and are also sweet and juicy.
I grew up eating this salad all summer long. Where I come from, this salad is a staple for a light lunch or dinner and a great addition to any meal.
Creative Ways to Serve
You can serve it with French Fries, home-made, or you can have it for breakfast or brunch, as I sometimes do, right next to some sunny-side-up eggs. Throw some bacon next to these eggs, and have a great meal!
I would also add some crumbled Feta cheese next to it and a slice or two of bread to dip in the juices released from the tomatoes.
What ingredients do you need for this salad?
To build a classic salad like this one, you only need a few ingredients:
- Tomatoes- the best tomatoes are the juicy, sweet ones.
- Cucumbers- Kirby cucumbers or the humble pickling cucumber is my favorite for this salad. It is incredibly crunchy and delicious. My second choice would be the English cucumber. If you have only garden cucumbers, use them, but peeled and seeded.
- Peppers- I like bell peppers and Cubanelle peppers. If you use bell peppers, try the red, orange or yellow ones.
- Green onions (optional)- you can also use red onion as it is milder and sweeter than the regular onion.
- Vegetable Oil- like sunflower oil or olive oil
From there, you can add anything you want and make this salad a meal by itself.
There is a divine combination of textures and flavors in this salad. Tomatoes provide juiciness, cucumbers, and peppers add crunchiness, and the onion brings an extra zing to the table.
Some vegetable oil or olive oil (if available) and salt to your taste are all you need. Don't add vinegar, just oil. And toss all that goodness into the juices coming from the tomatoes.
Let the salad sit for five minutes until you grab some crusty slices of bread to dip into the sauce. You will be in heaven!
To make it a meal, add some crumbled Feta cheese over it. Replace the green onions with red ones if you have some, just to bring more color into the mix. If you also add olives, you end up with the famous Greek salad.
This salad would be great if you served it with grilled meats or some delicious Chicken Schnitzel. Yum and yum!
How to make this cucumber and tomato salad
Grab a salad bowl, chop the ingredients bite-size, put them all together in the bowl, add salt and some oil, and allow the salad to sit for five minutes, just to allow the flavors to get acquainted with each other.
There is nothing better than dipping some chunks of French baguette or your favorite bread into that juice at the bottom of your bowl. Your mouth will be in heaven! Don't you have a French baguette? Make this bread instead!
Why this salad doesn't have vinegar in the dressing?
The reason we do not add vinegar is because of the tomatoes. A good, juicy tomato is also acidic and enough to flavor the salad without the help of vinegar. There is also no sugar, honey, or other ingredients either! Please do not try to add any dressing that you might find in the fridge! Not a good idea!
Can I make this in advance?
You can, but do not add the dressing until you are ready to serve the salad. The dressing will extract the juices from the vegetables, and you will end up with a soggy salad.
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Best Tomato Cucumber Salad
- 4-5 medium size tomatoes
- 1-2 medium sweet bell peppers any color
- 1 medium white or red onion or 3-4 green onions
- 2-3 small cucumbers or 1 big English cucumber
- 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
- Salt to taste
- Optional: 1-2 tablespoons of fresh crumbled Feta cheese
- Optional: Fresh baguette
- Optional: a few black olives
- Wash vegetables.
- Slice tomatoes in thin wedges.
- Peel the cucumbers and slice them thin.
- Seed the peppers and slice them into bite-size chunks.
- Chop the green onions. If you use regular onion, julienne it.
- In a large bowl, place all ingredients.
- Add salt to your taste. Toss the vegetables together.
- Add extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil(I make this salad with sunflower oil, my preference)
- Mix again to coat all ingredients with the oil.
- Optional: Add crumbled Feta cheese to your taste and olives.
- French baguette is also good for dipping in the juices.
- Feta cheese
- French baguette
- A few black olives