Shirazi salad, also referred to as salad Shirazi, is a popular traditional Iranian salad that originated from and is named after Shiraz in Southern Iran. Its primary ingredients are cucumber, tomato, onion and lemon juice, although lime juice or verjuice is sometimes used in its preparation. In Iran, it is eaten in the summer as a side dish on its own, and year-round as a side dish alongside meat-based foods such as kebab or steak, and as a side dish before and after meals. Shirazi salad is sometimes served as an accompaniment to rice. Cookbook author Jila Dana-Haeri describes it as a refreshing dish during the summer.
Shirazi salad has been described as being akin to a national salad in Iran, and for most meals in Iran, it is the most common meal accompaniment. It may also be used in a manner similar to that of a condiment, to reduce the spiciness of stews. It typically has a crisp and moist texture, and is somewhat similar to pico de gallo.
The primary ingredients of Shirazi salad consist of small, finely-diced cucumber, tomato and onion, which is mixed with fresh lemon or lime juice and some dried mint. Olive oil, salt, and pepper may be used, and additional ingredients may include chopped mint, parsley, scallions, dill, sumac, red vinegar, and unripe grape juice. The salad may have a sour and salty flavor, and its flavor may increase after being set for an hour or longer before serving, which allows time for the flavors to intermingle. It may be served with breads such as pita and lavash, or with cheese and/or walnuts.
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