17 July 2007

You say Tabouleh or tabouli, or tabbouleh, or tabbulah even...

Well rather a strange title but rather fitting for my post. It goes under several different names and many different ingredients. I think the best bit about this dish is that anything goes really. I saw it in a magazine (although I have a number of variations in my cookbook collection) and thought, that sounds easy.

So off to the kitchen I trot to make me some and how great it was. I'm always looking for something that is good, easy and doesn't take a lot of effort when you've worked all day. This recipe is just the answer. It doesn't cost a lot either since if you have a glut of one thing - just add that and skimp on the something else. Who is to know? Isn't the best part of making salads putting in what you have more of orr less of what you don't like?

I only decided on this recipe (aside from the ease of it) to help me overcome my fear/loathing of couscous. Yes, tabbouleh is traditionally Bulgar wheat but you can put what you have - I have done both Bulgar wheat and couscous. The fear/loathing - reason well I won't get into it here - suffice to say it isn't a pretty sight!

So now for the recipe - and remember you can adjust or delete or add things you like. I just happen to like this combination.

1 cup Bulgar wheat
2 cups stock (any kind you like - I used vegetable) or water

Pour boiling stock or water over Bulgar wheat which has been placed in a bowl. Cover with cling film and let sit for 30 minutes to soak up the water/stock. After the 30 minutes test to make sure it is softened enough. Leave longer if needed or drain in a fine-meshed sieve if done.

Cherry Tomatoes
Coriander (large bunch)
Juice from 2 lemons
Zest from said 2 lemons
3-4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
Halloumi - several slices, cubed
Black olives - chopped (or kalamata olives if you have them)
Pine nuts - toasted
Salt & Pepper to taste

Chop the tomatoes into quarters and place in a big bowl. Cut the cucumber into small cubes (you can de-seed it if you like - I didn't because I didn't want to waste it) and put those into the bowl with the tomatoes. Roughly chop the coriander and put that into the bowl. Add the olives, halloumi and zest. Add the drained Bulgar wheat.

Pour over the lemon juice and olive oil and stir. Add salt and pepper to taste. Toss in pine nuts and have a final stir. Serve at room temperature. If you don't eat it all it will keep for several days and gets better! Pull out 30-45 minutes before dinner if it have been put into the fridge.

I did the above but also with couscous which I used 300 grams of couscous to 600 mls of stock. I found this seem to work well (as I always get it too water logged!). I at least now enjoy couscous - and you might too! Enjoy!

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