The first of warm-weather tomatoes, garlic, parsley and mint combine in a refreshing Middle Eastern parsley salad. Serves 8.
3/4 cup bulgur wheat
3/4 cup cold water
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2/3 cup EVOO
2 cups finely chopped Italian parsley
2 cups finely chopped spearmint or lemon mint
1/2 cup diced green onions, white part only
2 tbsp diced garlic
6 diced plum tomatoes, about 1 cup
1 large diced cucumber
Salt & pepper to taste
1. Combine bulgur, water, lemon and 1/3 cup EVOO in a large bowl. Mix well. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Fluff occasionally with a fork.
2. Add mint, parsley, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and the remainder of the oil. Toss and fluff.
3. Add diced cucumber and tomatoes. Toss again.
4. Stand loosely covered at room temperature to allow flavors to meld.
5. Just before serving, adjust seasoning to taste. Add more lemon or oil as desired.
People who only use parsley as a garnish will be pleasantly surprised at how delightful it is in this Lebanese salad dressed in nothing more exotic than good olive oil and a little lemon. What's more, parsley is a nutritional powerhouse, rich in vitamins A (beta carotene), C and K and packed with health-promoting flavonoids. Serve tabbouleh as a light lunch or supper accompanied by hummus, pita and olives. Because parsley holds up well at room temperature, it's perfect for a picnic or pot-luck supper.