Tabbouleh - the first time I tried it, I found it so-so. Nice idea, nice ingredients... but in the end, wasn't it just a bit.... bland? Some years later I visited a local Lebanese restaurant - where Tabbouleh formed part of an amazing mixed starter plate. I was shocked with it arrived. Instead of a pile of bulgar wheat, it was full of herbs, beautifully soft parsley - with just a hint of cilantro. Mmmm... I can still remember even bypassing my beloved hummus to eat it. it was that good.
So when I was deciding what to do with the rest of my chermoula, I decided to stick with the North African theme and even though the weather was cold outside, go for this beautiful salad.
It isn't entirely authentic - I do add a touch of garlic - just because I like it! And I wasn't too happy with how it turned out - there was too much tomato (and it was chopped too big), the parsley wasn't chopped quite finely enough, and my local greengrocer was out of cilantro. But after 2 hours resting in the fridge it still ended up tasting lovely!
- 1 cups bulgar wheat (I used the medium grade)
- 1 large bunch parsley, thoroughly washed
- 3 large tomatoes (I used 5 - too much!)
- 1 small clove of garlic (optional)
- 1 red onion
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of one lemon
- Salt and pepper
Blanch and remove the skins from the tomatos. Quarter them and discard seeds before dicing finely.
Finely chop the garlic and red onion.
Using a knive, finely chop the parsley - including the stocks. I think I left about 2 inches of stock left from my bunch - you don't want the really tough bits.
Mix the herbs, tomatoes, onion and garlic with the bulgar wheat, add the lemon juice and a couple of glugs of extra virgin olive oil. Add a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper.
Cover and put in the fridge for a couple of hours to let the flavours mingle. After this time, give it a good mix, taste and adjust seasoning if required.
Serve with Moroccan chicken like I did, or with hummus and pita bread for a light lunch or supper!