Tabouli (or Tabbouleh) is a dish that is easily adaptable to what you have on hand. You can switch out the bulgur for quinoa or barley, even rice or orzo; change the parsley to dill; vary the vegetables, and add a protein if you’d like. Some recipes I’ve seen even add feta cheese. However, I’m not a fan of feta, so that won’t be me.
Traditional Lebanese tabouli uses a much smaller amount of bulgur, almost as a garnish, and the herbs, usually parsley and mint, are the stars. It’s more of a salad than a side dish when prepared in that authentic manner, but I went in the opposite direction, wanting the heartiness that more grains would provide.
I’ve recently seen quinoa tabouli at several restaurants, and while it was good, I really like bulgur. So why not a combination? I like cucumbers in tabouli, but didn’t have any, so why not radishes? This was to be the meal, so how about some white beans to really make it a main course? I did all of the above and it was delicious and filling! And so very fresh with veggies and herbs from your garden or the farmers’ market. Enjoy!
Tabouli (or Tabbouleh) with White Beans
2 cups cooked bulgur
1 ½ cup cooked red quinoa (or regular quinoa)
2-3 scallions, sliced
2 radishes, diced (I had red and purple—so pretty!)
1 ripe tomato, seeded and chopped
1 cup cooked white beans (or one cup canned, drained and rinsed)
1 handful fresh dill, chopped
1 handful fresh mint, chopped
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Mix bulgur, quinoa, scallions, tomato, white beans, dill and mint in large bowl. In a small bowl, mix olive oil and lemon juice. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Pour dressing over bulgur mixture and toss. Adjust seasoning, adding more herbs and salt & pepper if desired. Serve immediately or cover and chill. Serves 6-8, possibly fewer, if serving as a meal by itself.