Thursday, December 6, 2012

Tabouli and Greek Salad with Hummus and Pita


A healthy and fresh  Middle Eastern themed meal of Tabouli and Greek salad with pita and hummus on the side.

Tabouli is a salad traditionally made with bulgar wheat, tomatoes, parsley, mint, lemon juice, and olive oil.  I had buckwheat on hand, so I used that instead.  I have seen tabouli made with all kinds of grains and it doesn't seem to detract from this tasty salad.  The benefits of using buckwheat is that it is wheat free (for people with wheat allergies) and heart healthy.  Buckwheat isn't even a grain at all it's actually a fruit.  I just had some in my pantry so I used it and it's a bonus to get all the good nutrition from it.  For more information about buckwheat check out The Worlds Healthiest Foods.


1 cup dry buckwheat
1-14oz can chicken broth, for vegetarian just use water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4-1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1 clove minced garlic
15 grape tomatoes, quartered
salt to taste

The day before making the salad I cooked the buckwheat in 1 can of boiling chicken broth.  I heated the broth to a boil, added the rinsed buckwheat and reduced the heat to a simmer for about 10-15 minutes.  Most of the liquid was absorbed but there was still some in the pan.  I removed the pan from the heat and let sit for another 15 minutes until all of the liquid was absorbed.  Then I fluffed the buckwheat and refrigerated it (I did this the day before just to save some time).  Then I made a dressing with 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice and about 1/2 cup olive oil, the parsley, green onions, and garlic.  To this I added the tomatoes, and the cooked buckwheat, tossed it together with some salt then let it sit in the refrigerator for a while in order for the flavors to blend.  Serves 4.

For the Greek salad  I used 1 cucumber, about 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, and 1 red bell pepper.  I chopped everything into bite sized pieces and tossed with the juice of 1 lemon, about 2 Tbsp of olive oil, about 1 tsp of oregano, and salt to taste.  Then I topped the salad with some Feta right before serving.

I served these salads with warm, homemade pita and fresh made hummus on the side.  This was a satisfying and healthy meal.  When I make Tabouli again I will add more lemon juice, more parsley, and add some mint.  It was very good the way I made it but I think it could be even better.  Most people add olives to their Greek salads, but I do not care for them so I omitted them.  If you love olives by all means add them. These are great salad recipes to know for something different from the usual lettuce salads.  Enjoy.

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