Moving to California really opened up a whole new world of exciting eats to a kid who grew up in the South (no offense) where foods were mostly American traditional. California cuisine abounds with the exotic influences from other cultures from around the world.
Ever since I was introduced to this Mediterranean salad back when I was a teenager, Tabouleh has become one of my favorite summer salads. Especially using the fresh homegrown ingredients that are growing in our garden, I could easily polish off a whole bowl myself.
I like to be creative and add a bit more “stuff” than what’s in a typical tabouleh dish. Tabouleh salad is traditionally made of bulgur, finely chopped parsley, mint, tomato and spring onion, seasoned with lemon juice and olive oil.
To liven the dish up, I like to put a bit of purple and green basil, along with cucumbers (gives the salad a nice cool crunch)
2 bunches of fresh parsley (1 1/2 cup chopped, with stems discarded)
2 tablespoons of fresh mint, chopped
I medium onion, finely chopped
6 medium tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup bulghur, medium grade
6 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Romaine lettuce or grape leaves to line serving bowl (optional)
oak bulghur in cold water for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until soft.
Squeeze out excess water from bulghur using hands or paper towel.
Combine all ingredients, except for salt, pepper, lemon juice, and olive oil.
Line serving bowl with grape leaves or romaine lettuce, and add salad.
Sprinkle olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper on top.
Serve immediately or chill in refrigerator for 2 hours before serving.
Recipe courtesy of http://www.expatrecipe.com/2010/08/23/tabouleh/
Serve as a side dish on top of leaf lettuce or stuffed in a pita bread.