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Tabouli can be a healthy snack, a side dish, a salad or a light meal. I like to make a batch before the weekend so it’s available for everyone to help themselves to anytime they head for the refrigerator.
AN AUTHENTIC LEBANESE RECIPE
For a great authentic Lebanese tabouli recipe, see http://www.dedemed.com/ , scroll down and click on Tabouli (in list of recipes on right side of page).
Notes on DeDe’s recipe (from link above)
- “Burgle” is the same thing as bulgur. Another name for this food is cracked wheat (which is a form of whole wheat). I buy bulgur from Whole Foods in the bulk section, because then I know it’s fresh. If I have more than I need for my recipe, I store the extra in the freezer.
- DeDe’s recipe calls for “1/2 cup soaked burgle” (bulgur). Here’s how to get ½ cup soaked (cooked) bulgur:
- Boil ½ cup of water. As soon as the water boils, add ¼ cup of dry bulgur to the water, cover the pot, turn off the heat and let it sit for 30 minutes (no peeking!). Uncover the pot and fluff the bulgur with a fork.
- In general, to cook bulgur, just use a 2:1 ratio of boiling water to bulgur and follow the directions given (above). Note: I doesn’t hurt to use a tad more water (than suggested in this ratio) because sometimes you don’t get to the pot right after it starts to boil and more of the water than expected evaporates.
- In my opinion, it’s always best to use fresh squeezed lemon juice (not the bottled stuff).
Notes on my variations to DeDe’s recipe
- I prefer to use curly parsley (not flat leaf Italian parsley) because the curly variety keeps the ingredients in the tabouli separated more and makes the salad seem more airy. It’s a personal preference.
- Instead of using yellow onions and green onions, I like to use finely diced white onions.
- I use a lot more bulgur than called for in DeDe’s recipe. You’ll find the proportion of veggies and bulgur that you like. Just keep experimenting!
- I also use less olive oil. But that, too, is a personal preference.
MIX INS THAT MAKE TABOULI SALAD INTO A MEAL
- Drained and flaked canned salmon
- Cubes of tofu
- Cooked beans
- Cooked lentils
Note: When I add any of these ingredients to the tabouli, I add more lemon juice. The additional ingredients dilute the flavor; adding more lemon juice perks it up.
ONE MORE MIX IN THAT WORKS GREAT
- Finely shredded red cabbage!
When I was working on the cabbage recipes for this blog the other day, I accidentally used the shredding instead of the slicing disc. As a result, I had some leftover shredded red cabbage languishing in my refrigerator. So when assembling lunch today, I mixed some of this cabbage into the tabouli. It looked GREAT! To this I added about one-half a can (about 3 ounces) of the Bear & Wolf Pink Salmon that I picked up at Price Costco. This made, if I say so myself, a delicious, beautiful, nutritious – and easy to put-together – lunch!
WHAT IF YOU CAN’T HAVE BULGUR (WHEAT) IN YOUR DIET?
N.P. (No problem!) You can substitute any grain that doesn’t have gluten, for example quinoa. For a comprehensive list of grains that do not have gluten, see:
This list of gluten-free grains comes from the Eating Well magazine site, which is a fabulous resource for anyone who has to avoid gluten: http://www.eatingwell.com/glutenfree .
Enjoy and stay healthy!
P.S. I’d love to know how you liked the tabouli. Did you make changes to this recipe? If so, what were they? What suggestions do you have for other readers? Thanks!!!