Loaded Mediterranean Salad

A celebration of summer, this Mediterranean salad features a rainbow of grilled and raw veggies and a zippy Greek-inspired vinaigrette. Take this concept and customize it however you like!


For the Salad

  • Small block of feta
  • Tbsp of good olive oil
  • Zest of a lemon
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Oil of choice for grilling
  • Few baby "fairy tale" eggplants
  • Assorted baby bell peppers
  • A lot of fun, differently-shaped, differently-colored tomatoes
  • Few baby or one large cucumber
  • Handful of fresh figs
  • Small wedge of parmesan
  • Few forkfuls of pickled red onions or shallots
  • Few sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp sumac, plus more for sprinkling on top

For the Dressing

  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Juice of a lemon
  • 1 tbsp coarse-grain mustard
  • Dash of honey
  • Dash of robust, flavorful olive oil
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Optional but highly recommended: the day before you plan to serve this salad, marinate the feta. Cut your feta into bite-sized cubes and put it into a resealable container. Add olive oil, lemon zest, and black pepper. Close the container, give it all a delicate shake, and let it sit in the fridge overnight or as long as a couple days.
  2. Cut the baby eggplants in half lengthwise and grill them cut-side down on a well-oiled rack until delicately charred. You can also grill some or all of the peppers, depending on your preferences. Let the grilled veggies cool to at least room temperature so that they don't wilt your other salad ingredients.
  3. While your grilled items are cooling, prep the dressing. Give all the ingredients a thorough whisk, taste it, and adjust as needed. You can add more honey for additional sweetness, or more oil for additional decadence.
  4. Prepare the other ingredients by slicing the peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and figs. Your salad will look more intricate if you can achieve a variety of shapes and textures with your veggies and fruits.
  5. Lay the veggies and fruits out on a serving platter, mixing the grilled items in with the raw.
  6. Take your feta (regardless of whether you marinated it or not) and drain off any excess moisture. Toss the feta cubes in a tsp of sumac.
  7. Top your salad with feta cubes, shaved parmesan, pickled red onions (or shallots), thyme leaves, and a good sprinkling of sumac.
  8. Drizzle the salad with half the dressing, then serve the rest on the side for adding to individual portions.