Salads are a staple at home, we have them almost every day for dinner with soup and if, on the weekends, we are having some baked dish or a grilled fish/chicken then there’s always a nice salad to go with it. And I don’t mean a paltry serving of sad looking lettuce, some cucumber and tomato slices thrown in for colour, what I am talking about is something that’s almost a meal by itself. We are Capricorns, the two of us, so its no wonder that raw food is such a favourite with us!

Tabbouleh had been on my mind for a while especially since I had it with Chermoula grilled prawns at Frangipani, Trident at Nariman Point. What I really love about this salad is that it is so fast to put together and is so filling too! I’d happily eat a bowl of this for lunch or dinner along with some crusty bread.

Since the hubby spent a lot of his childhood in Dubai he is spot-on with Middle Eastern flavour, which means that there’s no room for slip-ups for me! So I knew this Tabbouleh had to be next to perfect. While reading up about the salad I learnt that the Bulghur wheat shouldn’t overpower the veggies, it should be just enough to add a new dimension to the texture of the salad. The key to making a good Tabbouleh, I realise now, is keeping everything fresh.

Tabbouleh

1/2 cup of Bulghur wheat
1 cup of water

1 large cucumber, peeled and chopped into half moons
2 medium-sized tomatoes, chopped into half moons
1 large onion, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup of Parsely, roughly chopped
2 tbsp of coriander leaves, roughly chopped
2 tbsp of mint leaves, roughly chopped
1 tsp of white vinegar

For the dressing
2 tsp of Extra virgin olive oil
Juice of half a lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

Bring the water to a gentle boil, place the Bulghur wheat in a big bowl and pour the water over this. Sprinkle some salt and cover the bowl. Keep it aside for about 20-30 minutes. Remove the lid and use a fork to fluff up the wheat, it should have cooked through by now but it also needs to have a bite to it, shouldn’t be mushy.

Meanwhile, soak the slices of onion in the white vinegar for about 30 minutes to an hour.

Whisk all the ingredients together for the dressing and keep it in the fridge for about an hour.

Place all the vegetables and herbs in a mixing bowl when you’re ready to serve, add the Bulghur wheat to this and mix well. Drizzle the dressing over this and serve immediately. You can garnish with some more chopped mint, coriander and Parsley if you like.

* I served this salad with some grilled fish. It is wonderful on its own too, all you need is a bread like Pita or even some nice crusty French bread that you can dip into some olive oil and nibble on.

* Leftovers of this salad make for a healthy, nutritious filling for a wrap.

*For some extra crunch you can toast pieces of Pita bread and scatter over the salad just before serving.

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