Friday, May 18, 2012

Tabouli Salad

Even though I am technically HOME AGAIN...the days have been flying by...and I haven't had time to download my camera full of pictures.  THAT is the activity that spurs new blogging for me...

And I have A LOT OF NEW STUFF -- Lilly was here for a visit, the E Team is buying a new house -- I've had some great classes the last week and met some very interesting people...But I've been so busy living my life I haven't had time to blog about it...

So this morning, when I was boiling the water for my bulgar wheat to make Tabouli Salad, I found myseslf thinking, "I wish I had time to take pictures"...and I remembered -- I ALREADY BLOGGED TABOULI.  But -- hey -- that was way back in 2010 -- and maybe you missed it!! 

Here's a repeat post....tomorrow I promise you something FRESH...

The great thing about COOKING is that every season brings it's own special treat...John is an enthusiastic gardner -- so in April, we enjoy fresh asparagus. And, if we're lucky -- in May the GREEN ONIONS pop out of the ground – that means THERE’S GOING TO BE TABOULI SALAD.

My mother-in-law Helen was the best cook I ever met and I never saw her use a recipe. She was Ukranian and Irish, and she married a Sicilian. She loved making ALL KINDS of food...and her version of Tabouli Salad comes from a Syrian neighbor in Pottsville, Pennsylvania.
It goes something like this: (remember -- NO exact recipe)
Soak two cups of Bulgar wheat...(I put the dry wheat in a shallow pan and pour hot water over it -- until there's about 1" of water on top. Cover with plastic wrap and let soak overnight).

here's what the hard, dry wheat looks like...

To assemble the salad -- put the puffed-up soaked wheat in a clean cotton towel and squeeze out the excess moisture.
If you did it right -- you should have about 4 cups of soft wheat...
2 cups of chopped green onions (both green and white parts)
1 cup of chopped mint leaves
1 cup of chopped tomatoes
1 cup of chopped parsley
We like a LOT of garlic. (John's best garden crop...) I mince three cloves into a small amount of olive oil and microwave it on high for about 20 seconds (this step is important, and softens the garlic flavor).
Then, add the garlic/oil to maybe 3/4 olive oil, with the juice of one LARGE lemon (or two small lemons).
MIX EVERYTHING TOGETHER...the Tabouli is better if it sits for an hour or so.Here's the finished salad -- after the wheat is soft, and everything else is mixed in...

The traditional way to eat Tabouli is with grape leaves...use the grape leaf to make a little Tabouli Taco. Hey - if you don't have grape leaves -- I'm telling you -- Tabouli is PRETTY GOOD WITH TACO CHIPS, too...I'm just saying...

For at least 30 years, I have made Tabouli salad in the SPRING….and I always think about Helen Farro…

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