I cross my heart and swear to you – I just typed out Tabbouleh with a Trist.
I know the spelling of tryst would be wrong, but come on. I’m sure that my Freudian slip title sounded kind of compelling to some of you. To others? Complete scandal. Shock and awe, I’m sure.
This tabbouleh’s kind of got the same thing going on. While the
tr twist (I almost just did it again!) is completely innocent, some are going to gasp when they realize what it’s got going on.
The gaspers I’m referring to are people like my mom. Possibly Lebanese in descent, familiar and infatuated with the tabbouleh you grew up eating. In other words, it’s only a small sect of people that would gasp.
Allow me to explain where this salad strays. Traditional tabbouleh salad starts off with some bulgur wheat, which comes in fine- and coarse-ground. When I was a kid, I only had fine, but that’s probably because the Market Basket we shopped at in our small, Southern New Hampshire town wasn’t really raking in the dough from its bulgur sales. No bigs.
If you’ve read my previous post on tabbouleh, you also know how I used to mispronounce bulgur and how I blame my mom for said mispronunciation. I’ll let that go though so we can talk about this tabbouleh.
Tabbouleh with a Twist has bulgur. Now’s not the time to be getting your panties up in a bunch.
While the first of my two bulgur photos shows you what it looks like before we introduce it to some water and warm it up in the microwave – here’s a glimpse of what it looks like afterward. Give those grains a good fluff with a fork and let them hang out while you prep the rest of your ingredients. They’ll cool off a bit and be ready by the time you are!
We’ve got lots of greens going on, but once again, I use them all in my traditional tabbouleh. So there. A bunch of green onions, a European cucumber that I’ve cubed up and some parsley.
When picking parsley, I always go for the flat leaves over the curly. Flat is where the flavor’s at. Save the other stuff for a garnish.
And just as an aside – cutting up cukes is my favorite task to cross off the to do list of making this salad. All those uniform little cubes. It appeals to the OCD in me.
All right, this is where this recipe runs amok. Have mercy on me, mom.
All that green in traditional typically gets a pop of complimentary color provided by some diced tomatoes. Here, we have something of a slightly different hue – sweetened dried cranberries.
Don’t knock it till you try it.
The cranberries completely change the flavor profile and make for a fantastic salad.
When’s the last time you had a fantastic salad?
The dressing for our Tabbouleh with a Twist gets a boatload of freshness from both lemon juice and grated lemon rind. A little salt boosts the flavor and a douse of some olive oil adds even more awesomeness.
Tabbouleh with a Twist
slightly adapted from Cooking Light
Yield: 8 Cups
Prep Time: 20 minutes (active), 4 hours to overnight (inactive)
Cook Time: 0 minutes
1 European cucumber, cubed
1 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup thinly sliced green onion
1 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
a healthy drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Place bulgur in a large bowl; cover with water, just to the top of the grains. Cover the top of the bowl with saran and microwave for 2-3 minutes.