Here’s an updated version of Christine Vartanian Datian’s award-winning recipe that was Sunset Magazine Editor’s Selection in June 2014. The salad, similar to a Middle Eastern fattoush salad, is especially crisp if you use crushed thin pita chips rather than the thick ones. Fattoush is basically a “bread salad,” said to have originated in Northern Lebanon. Lebanese farmers would fry leftover pita scraps in a bit of olive oil for extra flavor. To build their fattoush, they’d simply throw the leftover pita in with whatever in-season vegetables and herbs they had on hand. If you leave out the chicken, this salad works well as a side dish for grilled lamb or kebabs. A simple dressing and a generous dash of sumac spice give this salad its distinctly complex flavor. Grilled vegetables like eggplant, tomatoes, onions, zucchini, mushrooms, and bell peppers may be added to this salad.
1/2 cup medium bulgur
1 boned, skinned chicken breast half (about 1 lb.), pounded until 1/2 in. thick
1 large head of Romaine lettuce, chopped
2-3 Persian cucumbers, quartered or 1 English cucumber, thinly sliced