A firm belief in the idea that food items for the side are meant to be easy. I prefer my main meal to be the center of the show. And who wants to make dinner less complicated than what it needs to be? Simple is best. I realized I wanted something easy and fresh when thinking about a side dish to serve with the Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo this week. The Simple Tomato Cucumber Salad is is one of my most-loved salads for summer and a perfect choice. The bright and light tastes of fresh tomatoes and cucumber perfectly complement the deep simmered flavor of the Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo.


I enjoy presenting very “basic” recipes like this for those new to cooking among my viewers. Why are simple recipes such as this good? Because they’re so easy to modify! The salad below is just that basic and, although delicious, can be taken further by adding many different ingredients. Check out these tasty variations:



1 cup olive oil ($0.64)

2 Tbsp of red vinegar wine ($0.08)

One teaspoon dried oregano ($0.10)

1/2 tsp salt ($0.02)

Freshly cracked pepper ($0.03)


4 Roma tomatoes (or two medium tomatoes) ($1.48)

One cube ($0.34)

Half a Red onion ($0.36)


Mix olive oil, red wine vinegar, oregano, salt, and freshly crushed pepper in a bowl, or put them all in a jar and shake until the ingredients are well mixed. Put the dressing aside so that the flavors can mix.

Cut thin slices* of the cucumber, tomato, and red onion. Put these in an enormous bowl.

Sprinkle the dressing on the cut vegetables and toss with a spoon to ensure the sauce is evenly distributed. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready for eating. The onions will turn soft as they are marinated with the sauce.

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