Tabbouleh


I’m not quite sure what it is with grains and rice that, at least whenever I make them, there is always a scoop left over.
This scoop, of course, is too big to toss and just big enough not to waste it.

Recently I’ve been revisiting quinoa. I love it! Soft but chewy, a little nutty and it’s so hypnotizing to look at once it cooked with it’s little, spiral fronds. With all this increase in quinoa around here, I have had a few little spoonfuls left over. Up until now I’ve been making great hot dishes from my quinoa, so when I needed a quick refresh, I had a craving for tabbouleh salad. Tabbouleh is a Mediterranean salad typically made with bulgar, parsley and a hint of mint but I had a bit of fennel so why not use up what you’ve got?

Light, fresh and delicious, I think I may just stay on this quinoa kick.

TABBOULEH

4 – 5 Romaine Lettuce Leaves
1 Bunch Flat Leaf Parsley, about 1 cup stemmed and finely chopped
4 Scallions
2 Tablespoons Mint Leaves
3 Tablespoons Fennel Fronds
1 Cup Quinoa, Cooked and cooled
1 Cup Tomatoes, seeded & chopped
1/2 Cup Cucumber, diced

DRESSING

1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive oil
1 Clove Garlic, minced
Pinch of Salt

Whisk the dressing together and set aside.
Wash, seed and dice the tomatoes into 1/4″ – 1/2″ pieces.
Chop the cucumber into a 1/4″ dice.
Chop the lettuce in the bowl of a food processor.
Follow with the scallions and parsley, finishing with the mint and fennel; chop well – everything should end up a uniform size.
Transfer the greens into a large bowl.
Add the quinoa, tomato and cucumber, tossing well to combine.
Pour over the whisked dressing, mixing to coat.
Chill prior to serving.

Aunt Martha’s Bean Salad


So she’s not my aunt, but she is someone’s. Growing up I would never even dare taste a bean salad let alone make one. However, starving while out at the beach one day, I was cornered with this, my only sustenance and can I say that since that moment I was not only a convert but a Beano stock holder.

I adapted that version and have since made it one of my signature BBQ/Potluck/quick in a pinch wow ’em salads.

DRESSING

3/4 Cup Red or Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Extra Fine Fruit Sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pepper to Taste

Method

Combine ingredients in an air tight container and shake well to dissolve the sugar.
Allow to stand for about and hour or at least the time to prepare the salad ingredients, if you are in a hurry.

SALAD

3 Cans of Beans (garbanzo, turtle, romano etc.)
1 Cup Fresh Green Beans (Trimmed and sliced to 1″ inch lengths) ** – measure to get correct number
1 Red Pepper
1 Yellow Pepper
2 Carrots
2 Celery Stalks
1 Red Onion (Small)
2 Cloves of Garlic
2 Tablespoons Finely Chopped Flat Leaf Parsley (optional, if you’re feeling decorative)

Method

Rinse the canned beans well and set aside in a large bowl.
Peel and mince the garlic.
Trim and slice green beans to 1″ inch lengths. Clean and trim the remaining vegetables and chop each into about a 1/2″ dice.
Add everything to the beans, including the dressing and toss well to coat.
This salad can be served immediately or made ahead to marinate up to a day ahead for a more thorough flavor.