Tabbouleh (Bulgur Salad) with Parsley and Mint

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A bulgur wheat salad of Lebanese origins, tabbouleh (also spelled tabouleh or tabouli) is full of refreshing flavors during hot weather: lemon, parsley, mint, and tomato are common ingredients. It’s easy to make and comes together quickly, with no cooking required except the initial heating of some boiling water in which to soak the bulgur wheat. Most recipes call for a lot of parsley, but if it’s too strong for you, cut the quantity back to your liking. Many recipes include olive oil, but it is omitted here, for fewer calories and less fat. There are plenty of other flavors to enjoy in this dish.

Ingredients

1 cup bulgur wheat
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup minced parsley (or less is also fine)
1/2 cup minced onion
2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 cup diced cucumber (optional)
2-3 Tbsp chopped mint
juice of 1 lemon

Directions

Place bulgur in a large bowl and pour boiling water over it. Let stand 15 minutes while you prepare the other ingredients. Parsley is a traditional (and very nutritious) ingredient, but some people don’t care for the flavor; cut it back if needed to suit your taste. Cucumber is less common but is such a nice, hydrating addition during hot weather. Once bulgur has soaked up much of the water, stir it to help it cool, and then add other ingredients. Stir all together and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or more.

To serve, eat tabbouleh as a side dish or make it the centerpiece of a grain bowl. Add other vegetables such as scallions, celery, bell peppers, spinach, and lettuce. Include beans such as chickpeas, a dollop of hummus, or kidney beans.