Easy, Frugal Mediterranean Platter
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I’m tired of fighting nature. For some reason, in the summer I forget that turning on the oven and stovetop will turn the entire house to hades. I’m tired of sweating like a pig just to make dinner. So this year I’m focusing on more harmonious meals. Meals that were meant to be served when the temperature rises and the oven should stay off.
This simple Mediterranean platter fits perfectly. It’s light, filling, and takes all of 10 minutes to prepare – including washing and chopping the vegetables and bread. Since the vegetables are in season, they are the most delicious and least expensive you’ll see them all year. I say act now and avoid home sweet hades.
Use seasonal vegetables to get the most flavor and the best prices!
- Cucumbers, sliced
- Carrots, sliced
- Bell peppers, sliced
- Sweet baby peppers, whole
- Cherry tomatoes, whole
- Tzatziki (cucumber sauce)
- Babaganoush (eggplant dip)
- Pita, cut into wedges or halved
- Bread, sliced
- Grilled chicken, thinly sliced
- Chick peas, canned and drained or homemade
- Kalamata olives
- Dates, dried
- Feta, cubed
- Fresh parsley and mint, chopped and sprinkled across the platter
Choose your favorite ingredients from the list above. Arrange them in bowls and on a platter as desired.
Serve as finger food, a pita bar, or a salad bar.
- Use a mandolin (affiliate link) to slice vegetables quickly and easily.
- Chop vegetables ahead of time and keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Try leftover rotisserie chicken or The Only Chicken You Need to Make.
- Sometimes I serve The Only Beef You Need to Make seasoned with Simple Greek Seasoning as a frugal meat option.
You can take the homemade part of this as far as you like. Obviously you can buy dip and bread at the store. But if you have the time/desire/need-to-be-frugal/need-to-avoid-preservatives, you can make your own ahead of time.
I try to streamline most of my cooking to 1-2 days a week. This works especially well in the summer because I only heat my kitchen one or twice. This way I still make food from scratch that saves money and avoids undesirable ingredients.
Let’s also remember how superior homemade dip is to store bought.
Here are some homemade recipes:
- Homemade hummus – Frugal tip: Use a few tablespoons peanut butter instead of tahini!
- Homemade tzatziki – This recipe is on point, but I usually skip the straining and food processor and just chop the cucumbers.
- Homemade babaganoush
- Homemade pita
- Whole grain french bread from The Grain Mill Wagon (my guest post).