I absolutely LOVE tabbouleh! I’ve been meaning to make it myself for quite some time but have been putting it off mainly because bulgur wheat has never been a staple ingredient in my pantry.
Last night I had some friends over for our monthly “girl’s dinner” (aka. DD’s) and needed a quick and easy salad to whip up as a side dish for my savoury chicken and mushroom-stuffed crepes entrée.
Of course, I didn’t have bulgur wheat on hand, but I DID have quinoa. I figured the substitution was worth a shot…and this is what the end result was:
I have to admit I LOVE the quinoa in this recipe…it adds a nutty flavour and lends so well to the dish because it soaks up all the juice from the tomatoes, cucumbers, and lemons.
Whether or not you like the “real” thing this variation IS worth a shot (especially if you’re a fan of quinoa like me…and my son!)
*This recipe yields a hefty portion so if you’re making this for baby I would use only 1 cup of quinoa and reduce the other ingredients by a third.
1 bunch parsley (about 3 cups), finely chopped
1/2 medium red onion (about 1/2 cup), finely diced
1 cucumber (about 1 cup), seeded and finely diced
4 Roma tomatoes (about 1 cup), finely diced
about 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (or more or less, as desired)
juice of 3 lemons (or 3/4 cup)
3 cups cooked quinoa
1/2 tsp. sumac (optional-if you can get your hands on it!)
Quinoa cooking instructions:
1.) Rinse quinoa thoroughly with water.
2.) Add 2 cups broth or water (and salt if desired) to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil on medium-high heat.
3.) Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low, add quinoa and cook covered, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes (or a few minutes more or less, depending on the desired texture).
4.) Once the water has evaporated, remove from heat and let stand for about 5 minutes.
5.) After letting it sit, fluff it up gently with a fork (as you would with couscous) before mixing with other ingredients and serving.
While the quinoa is cooking, finely dice cucumbers, red onion, tomatoes and add to finely chopped parsley in a large bowl.
Add cooked quinoa, olive oil and lemon juice, and mix until combined and all the quinoa is well coated with the dressing.
*The amount of lemon required depends on personal taste. This version isn’t too “lemony” but you might want to start with only 1/2 cup of lemon juice and then add more, if necessary.
Add sumac, if desired and mix until combined.
Store the fridge for at least 2 hours to let all the flavours amalgamate…the longer it sits, the better it tastes!
Serve alone, as a side dish or with some fresh pita bread for dipping!