This traditional Mediterranean bread salad uses pita; experiment with leftover whole wheat, French, or sourdough bread cut into cubes and toasted before tossing with the other ingredients.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 (7-inch) pitas
3 cups chopped tomato
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cucumber, peeled, quartered lengthwise, and sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
1 (7-ounce) bottle roasted red bell peppers, drained and chopped
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 400°.
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Combine garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pork, tossing well to coat. Let stand 5 minutes.
Arrange pitas in a single layer directly on oven rack. Bake at 400° for 5 minutes or until crisp; transfer to a wire rack.
While pitas bake, add pork mixture to pan; cook 5 minutes or until done, stirring frequently. Place pork mixture in a large bowl. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, tomato, onions, mint, vinegar, juice, cucumber, and peppers. Break the toasted pita bread into bite-sized pieces. Add pita pieces to pork mixture; toss to combine.
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I've been making this since April 2010, and five years later, it is still one of our favorite summer meals. I was looking for more salads that could be eaten as main dishes and came across this recipe in Cooking Light, based on a traditional Lebanese salad. We don’t like mint, though, so we substitute with fresh basil instead (it’s actually in the mint family itself.) We also use fresh minced garlic instead of the bottled stuff. We use Roma tomatoes and whole wheat pita.Very simple to put together. I go ahead and cut up the veggies and basil and let it marinade in the vinegar and lemon juice for a few hours. I really like the idea of having a cool/warm salad, so just before the pork is done, I take out half of it to save for the next day. I like to be able to reheat the leftover pork without overcooking. I also only toast one pita, planning to toast the other the next day as well. I then go ahead and finish cooking the rest of the pork and mix it with half of the veggie mixture.Oh my, it tastes so fresh, so simple, so good. When we first had it, my husband kept talking about what great flavors it had, and he still does every time we have it. I love how the pita bits soaked up the juice at the bottom of the bowl (without getting gross and soggy.) It is nice being able to eat a big bowl of healthy yumminess and feel quite satisfied. We both agreed back then then that this was a keeper - and like I said, five years later we are still making it!
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