If you’ve never tried tabouleh, you need to! It is such a fabulous dish. Tabouleh is a combination of bulgur (cracked wheat), tomato, lemon juice, and fresh herbs. The fresh flavors will have you taking seconds or even thirds! Tabouleh is refreshing, perfect for the warmer months.
Believe it or not, the first time I tried tabouleh was in Paris, France. My instructor from the study abroad program I was in took us to a Middle Eastern restaurant. She was Lebanese and knew the best places in the city to get Middle Eastern fare. This was also the first time I tried falafel and babaganoush! Boy was I missing out!
After the first bite of tabouleh I was sold! I now make it all the time.
Tabouleh | adapted from Claudia Roden’s “The New Book of Middle Eastern Food”
- 2 cups bulgur
- juice from 3-4 lemons
- 3 ripe tomatoes chopped
- 3 scallions chopped
- 2 large handfuls of fresh parsley chopped finely
- large handful of fresh mint chopped finely
- 1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- optional: 1 small cucumber diced
Put bulgur in bowl and cover with water. Let sit 10 minutes. Drain bulgur and push out any excess water. Transfer bulgur to a large bowl with lemon juice and tomatoes. Let sit for 35 minutes. Mix in remaining ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Wash and chop all ingredients while the bulgur is soaking with the lemons and tomatoes. According to Claudia Roden, a traditional way of eating tabouleh is to scoop it up with lettuce leaves. My husband and I love to eat it this way. Tabouleh is too light to stand alone as a main course. When I make it, I plan on making other Middle Eastern sides. For example: hummus, pita, babaganoush, roasted or grilled eggplant slices and/or lentils.
What is Bulgur?
Bulgur is wheat that has been boiled, dried and then broken up into small pieces. Whole Foods carries bulgur in their bulk section. Bulgur is considered a whole grain.
Tabouleh is a high fiber, whole grain dish. The olive oil provides a healthy source of fat in this recipe. The fresh parsley, mint, tomatoes, and lemons all contain cancer fighting properties.