Tabouli Salad

Tabouli Salad is a Middle Eastern dish that I learned to make years ago in my restaurant. The recipe is made from bulgar wheat, tomatoes and lots of fresh parsley. The lemon juice gives it a fresh, tangy tasty.
I like to make tabouli salad in the late summer when the tomatoes, parsley and cucumbers are ripe in the garden. Sometimes I will also add a little feta cheese. The sharp, salty flavor goes well with the lemon and fresh taste of the cucumber.

Bulgur wheat is a whole wheat grain that has been cracked and partially pre-cooked. As a whole grain, it is naturally high in fiber and a low-fat ingredient. Bulgur wheat is cracked and pre-cooked wheat as opposed to wheat berries, which are the whole, un-cracked and an uncooked version.

Prep time : 1 hour for bulgar

Ingredients

  • 2 cups bulgar wheat
  • 2 cups water
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 2¼ teaspoons thyme
  • ¼ cup spearmint, preferably fresh
  • 1 large bunch parsley
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 to 2 tomatoes
  • ½ cucumber, optional

Directions

  1. Place water, salt and thyme in a medium saucepan. Cover and turn heat to high until it comes to a boil. Remove pan from heat, add bulgar wheat, stir, return lid to pan and let sit an hour or longer.
    bulghar in water
  2. Once the bulgar has sat for an hour, it will have absorbed the water and expanded.
    cooked bulgar wheat
  3. Remove stems from parsley and chop leaves finely. Mince green onions, using the white and most of the green stem. Chop fresh spearmint.
    chopped parsley   sliced scallions
  4. Cut tomato into small chunks. Peel part of the cucumber, leaving on about half the skin. Slice cucumber in half down the middle and remove seeds. Cut halves in half again lengthwise (you now have it cut in quarters lengthwise) and chop into small pieces.
  5. When bulgar is ready, transfer it to a medium bowl. Add spearmint, parsley and onions and stir.tabouli salad
  6. Slowly drizzle in olive oil and mix well. Add lemon, tomato and cucumber, and mix.
  7. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Tabouli will keep in the fridge up to 3 or 4 days.

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