Saturday, May 22, 2010
Yummy! My sister Wendy gave me this recipe and it is from one of the Barefoot Contessa cookbooks. It is a little different, but we absolutely loved it! It is so colorful, healthy and full of delicious fresh ingredients. I looked up Tabbouleh on Wikipedia and discovered that it is one of the most popular Middle Eastern salads. It is made with bulgur wheat, tons of parsley, mint, scallions, lemon juice, olive oil, etc. You can serve it as a salad, a side, or a main dish. We ate it as a main dish and served it in warm pitas and crumbled some feta cheese on top. So good! I highly recommend eating it that way. It was super filling too (because of the bulgur wheat, which I also read about here. It's more nutritious than white rice and couscous and is high in fiber, vitamins and minerals).
So give this a try! If you make the pitas too (which I suggest you do. Here's a great recipe - newly revised to be more mixer-friendly) it's more work, but definitely worth it. The tabbouleh itself is not very hard at all and you're supposed to make it ahead of time. I made it in the afternoon, but when we had if for leftovers for lunch today, I thought it tasted even better - so next time I'm making it in the morning. By the way, I bought my bulgur wheat in the bulk foods section in my grocery store, but you may find it other places.
1 cup bulgur wheat
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (1-2 lemons)
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup minced scallions, white and green parts (1 bunch)
1 cup chopped fresh mint leaves (1 bunch)
1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley (1 bunch)
1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and medium-diced
2 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2 tsp. kosher salt, or to taste
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
feta cheese, optional
Place the bulgur in a large bowl, pour in the boiling water, and add the lemon juice, olive oil, and 1 1/2 tsp. salt. Stir, then allow to stand at room temperature for about an hour. (Use this hour - or that last half - to chop everything).
Add the scallions, mint, parsley, cucumber, tomatoes, and salt & pepper to taste (I didn't use all the salt personally); mix well. Serve, or cover and refrigerate . The flavor will improve if the tabbouleh sits for a few hours. (I definitely recommend letting it sit for at least 3-4 hours).