Let’s get ethnic and talk about one of the yummiest salads ever: Tabouleh! So many variations (although slight) surround this arabic concoction, but they are all equally good and full of heart healthy benefits!
The word Tabouleh is derived from the arabic word tabil which means to season. Because it’s loaded with so much goodness like parsley, tomatoes, onions, and bulgar, it’s a delicious Middle Eastern salad that is now enjoyed the world over.
The way it’s traditionally served in a Syrian home is with some romaine lettuce leaves to scoop up the tabouleh to eat. It adds a layer of crunch and cleanses the palate too. It differs slightly in how it’s prepared depending on what country and culture you happen to identify with. For example, the Lebanese have more parsley to bulgar ratio, whereas Syrians make it with a bit more bulgar to even out the amount of parsley that’s in the salad.
This is no ordinary salad people. Trust me, once you give this recipe a try, you’ll be craving it again and again! And you’ll see just how simple it is to make and enjoy. You are what you eat after all.
- 1/4C fine bulgar #1 (available at your local Middle-Eastern store)
- 2 bunches curly leaf parsley, washed and stems trimmed off
- 2 medium tomatoes, finely diced
- 3 green onions, finely chopped
- 1Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/4C extra virgin olive oil
- salt to taste
1. Place bulgar in a bowl or cup and add hot water to it. Let sit for as long as it takes you to prepare all of your other ingredients. Or approximately 5 minutes.
Tip: For those of you who can’t have wheat or choose to avoid it, you may opt for using quinoa in place of the bulgar and you will still yield fabulous results! Have the quinoa pre-cooked prior to wanting to make Tabouleh.
2. Next, finely chop the parsley leaves. With your parsley, the key is to get it nice and finely chopped. That’s the secret to a successful Tabouleh.
Note: you can buy either curly or flat leaf parsley; I personally prefer using curly parsley over flat leaf for Tabouleh. I find it lends a much better and lighter texture…it doesn’t taste all mushy and tastes more airy if you will.
3. Next, finely chop the tomatoes and onions. Again, the key to a beautiful Tabouleh is in how fine you can get the vegetables.
4. To assemble, remove bulgar from water, squeeze dry, and place at the bottom of your salad bowl.
5. Next, add the tomatoes, onions, and finally the parsley.
Tip: If you change your mind and decide you don’t want to have Tabouleh that day, you can wrap the bowl and keep it in the fridge for a few days, until you’re ready to enjoy the salad. As long as it isn’t mixed with the dressing, it’ll stay fresh for a few days to even a week!
6. To dress up your Tabouleh, add olive oil, lemon juice, and some salt to start and mix ingredients until fully incorporated. Taste for the right salt content and add more if needed. You want it to be balanced in taste so don’t worry if you need to add more salt to even out the lemon juice and olive oil.
There you have it! Simple and chock-full of vitamins and minerals. Pair it with a few crackers and you have a perfect lunch or snack idea!
Bon appétit! xo