Thursday, April 10, 2008

Tabouleh

I love tabouleh. A lot. There're a lot of variations to this dish, but mine is based on the combination of the recipe I got from my "nephew," Y, in Haifa, and the tabouleh I eat at a Persian restaurant in Austin. To me, tabouleh should be tailored to fit your tastes, so the quantities I'm giving are approximate. In reality, when I make this, it's a dash of this and a handful of that, but it works out to roughly what I'm typing below.

1/4 cup bulghur wheat
2 cups water
1/8 cup dried barberries or dried currants
1/2 cup sliced scallions
1/4 cup roma tomato, deseeded and diced
1/2 cup diced cucumber (up to you if you peel it)
1-2 bunches parsley, chopped (I generally use the curly, but I always use whichever is cheapest while I'm waiting for my parsley to grow)
1/2 cup mint, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1/8 cup each: lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil (this is where you'll want to bust out the good oil)

Put the wheat and barberries in a bowl, then add water. Let soak in the fridge until the wheat is very swollen and the berries are fully rehydrated. Strain, then squeeze the wheat and berries to get all the water out. Nothing is grosser than too-wet tabouleh. Add scallions, tomato, cucumber, parsley and mint, then mix together. Depending on how lazy you are, either whisk together the lemon, oil, salt and pepper, or just dump them in the bowl and mix together. Chill. Eat. I eat it straight from the bowl, but a lot of people like to scoop it up with romaine lettuce leaves.

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