I am accustomed to doing without some foods I could once buy up north.
For the most part.
But not entirely.
The serpent tends to come upon me when I spy what I think is a northern treasure. On Friday I was in Soriana (a large Mexican grocery chain) to pick up a few items. They have several small displays with foods from other countries. Imported delicacies. Such as, Chex Mix. You get the idea. I was not expecting much.
On the Italian display I caught a glimpse of something black and oblong in a jar. My hope meter pegged. Could it be? Kalamata olives?
And it was. A small jar for a small fortune. But I wanted them to make one of my favorite summer meals -- Greek salad.
Knowing that I was being a bit addled merely to look, I wandered over to the cheese case to see if any feta was available. If not, I was willing to settle for fresh goat cheese.
But like some loaves and fishes tale, there it was. Feta. Packed in brine. Real feta. The fact that it was made in Denmark did not deflate my hopes.
With some local tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers -- and a jar of green Spanish olives (you know the type: stuffed with a bit of pimento) to augment the Kalamatas, I was on my way home. And I knew it was a good day when I found a real lemon at my local grocer for the mint dressing.
The result is at the top of the post. Now, I will admit without heirloom tomatoes, English cucumbers, Walla Walla sweet onions, and my favorite South African peppers, it is not quite the same salad I enjoyed in Salem.
But, that is the point, isn’t it? It isn’t the same salad.
It is a good salad. And quite refreshing on these hot, humid summer afternoons. A nice glass of water. A few crackers. A bowl of new Greek salad. What more could I ask?