Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Purslane Salad with Yogurt--Semizotu

I first discovered purslane when I lived in Turkey and fell in love with it as a salad green immediately. I especially love it fixed in this recipe.

Purslane (Portulaca oleracea), is usually regarded as a common garden weed today, but it has been cultivated as a succulent food crop for more than 2000 years in India, Persia, and the Middle East. From these areas the plant spread to Europe during the sixteenth century where it gained in popularity and was thought to ward off evil spirits.

Purslane is high in vitamin C, and, when eaten raw, has diuretic properties. An excellent crunch salad plant, its cooling leaves blend well with hotter-flavored salad herbs.

You can find purslane growing wild if you are familiar with the plant, or many health and specialty groceries carry it.

  • 2 cups (300 g.) purslane
  • 1 3/4 cups (440 g.) plain yogurt
  • 2 cloves (6 g.) garlic
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (9 g.) sea salt


Wash purslane thoroughly; drain. Chop coarsely.

Combine with yogurt, salt and crushed garlic.

Chill and serve.

Cultural Notes:

This salad is prepared in Mediterranean and Aegean regions. Wild purslane "tohmeken" is used instead of cultivated.

This recipe is from Samples from Turkish Cuisine published by the Turkish Ministry of Culture, 1993.

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