Tabbouleh (or Tabouli) is a traditional Middle Eastern or North African dish with a wonderfully fresh flavor. It is usually made with a cracked wheat such as bulghur or couscous but this wheat-free version is a lovely alternative. You could use more herbs but I really enjoy the subtle flavor of the dish – however, feel free to vary and experiment with the quantities.
This could also be bulked up with cooked whole lentils, flageolet beans or chickpeas – adding a boost of protein, calcium, and iron at the same time!
- Cauli Couscous
- 500g/1lb 2oz cauliflower
- 1 tbsp water
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Tabbouleh Salad Mix
- 75g/3oz fresh parsley
- 20g/¾oz fresh mint
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 15 cherry tomatoes, quartered
- ¼ cucumber, chopped in small pieces
- 10-12 kalamata or other olives, pitted (optional)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- Juice of 1½ lemons
- Sea salt
- Pinch of sugar or tiny drizzle of agave
- Wash and roughly cut cauliflower into chunks. Place them in a food processor and use the pulse function until you have coarse grains, about the size of couscous.
- Place the cauliflower into a large saucepan with the tablespoon of oil and water. Keep stirring well and gently sauté until tender but not too soft – you want to keep a "bite" to it. Set aside to cool (Alternatively, keep it completely raw if you prefer and omit this step.)
- Chop herbs finely and place in a serving bowl together with the chopped onion, cherry tomatoes, cucumber pieces, and olives.
- Stir in the cauliflower, the 3 tbsp of olive oil, and lemon juice. Season with salt to taste and serve chilled.
This gluten-free Tabbouleh salad can be enjoyed on its own as a light lunch or dinner, if you want, you could even add your own tofu. Try this recipe for air-fried tofu, which according to recipe creator Namely Marly, delivers “a crispy crust with a perfectly chewy center.”
Alternatively, the salad could be enjoyed with bread and hummus dip, which you could also make yourself with one of these 10 vegan hummus recipes; try sundried tomato or roasted red pepper.
If you’ve got more of an appetite — or you’re catering for a large group — Tabbouleh is the perfect side dish.
For a summery meal, you could try making it alongside this recipe for a baked sweet potato with kale and vegan tahini dressing. According to recipe creator Five Sec, the dish travels well, so you could box it up in Tupperware with the Tabbouleh and take to a picnic or a friend’s party, whatever takes your fancy.
If you’re in the mood to make more Middle Eastern-style recipes, you could try this vegan millet and nut pilaf recipe served with mint, lemon, and dairy-free yogurt sauce.
Or, if you want something a little more indulgent, you could try making this recipe for smoky vegan seitan kebabs with peanut sauce — maybe even add in the Tabbouleh as a side dish. According to Matthew Prescott, the creator of the smoky seitan kebab recipe, “it’s a deliciously smoky and more sustainable way to enjoy this tasty [kebab] dish.”
This recipe was republished with permission from Vegan Recipe Club.
Image Credit: Flickr