Tabouli (Tabboulah) Salad traditionally is a mixture of Bulgur wheat, parsley, tomatoes and cucumbers topped with lemon juice and olive oil, and originates from Lebanon. This healthful vegetarian salad is often served with hummus, olives and pita bread, but sometimes it’s fun to break the norm and serve it alongside non-traditional Mediterranean foods including eggs, chicken, fish or grilled meats.
I have seen Tabouli come in many varieties today, especially with all the fad diets out there. Bulgur is often replaced with Quinoa, brown rice or cauliflower rice for a different twist that can be great as well, especially if you leave the other ingredients pretty standard.
In my recipe, I decided to add Parmesan cheese and Pine Nuts for an additional layer of texture that is not often found, but tastes delicious. I think the cheese adds a saltiness that heightens the fresh lemon juice and absorbs into the grainy salad without clear definition. The Pine Nuts offer a slight creaminess that I would say is needed and extends the overall flavors.
Tabouli is best if you make it a day or two ahead and let it sit to absorb the flavors of the ingredients – give it a chance to rest. I prefer to eat it cold, but room temperature works as well – it’s great for a buffet-style brunch, lunch or dinner.
1 1/2 cups Bulgur wheat
1/2 bunch green onions
1/2 bunch flat leaf parsley
1/2 bunch cilantro
12 mint leaves
juice of 2 lemons
zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
salt & pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup toasted Pine Nuts
4 cups fresh mixed greens
- Place Bulgur in a bowl with boiling water just to cover. Let Bulgur rest for 3o minutes, until all water is absorbed.
- Place green onions and all fresh herbs into a food processor or blender and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add herbs to Bulgur and stir.
- Add juice and zest of lemons and stir. Add onion powder, smoked paprika, 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, stir. Drizzle olive oil over the top and stir to combine.
- Add Parmesan and stir. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for at least 4 hours, up to several days. Add Pine Nuts right before serving. Serve over fresh greens. Enjoy!