I really really like Tabbouleh Salad, truly, I do. I just don’t think it likes me back. A traditional Tabbouleh salad is made with either bulgur, or couscous, which, for those of you who didn’t know is also known as cracked wheat. And I don’t know if you’ve read any books on nutrition lately, but wheat isn’t exactly a health food. So, in the spirit of recreating foods in a healthier and yummier version, I made a tabbouleh with cauliflower.
I tried making Tabbouleh with quinoa a few times, which actually turned out really good. But I seem to digest cauliflower a heck of a lot better than quinoa. Plus there’s the sheer carb volume you get when eating quinoa, which always seems to give me an energy crash. Annnnnnd I recently read an article which said that quinoa is becoming unavailable and too expensive for the very same people who grow it, because of our sudden over-consumption of it. And that made me sad. But I digress.
The texture of cauliflower is of course slightly different from the real deal but the toasted almonds add a nice crunch to the mix and the flavours soak into the cauliflower very nicely! The granny smith apple is purely optional and if you want a more classic Tabbouleh, just add some fresh tomatoes instead.
Just a trivial piece of information for you: Tabbouleh is traditionally served as part of a mezze in the Arab world. Variations of it are made by Turks and Armenians, and it has become a popular ethnic food in Western cultures. In Lebanon, the National Tabbouleh Day is celebrated each first Saturday of the month of July. I just always like to know where my recipes come from so there!
As most Tabbouleh salads, it was even more delicious after sitting for a few hours when all the flavours were at their full potential. I served this with some lovely Lemon Chicken Kebabs as well as my Lemon Tahini Dressing and it was fan-tastic!
- 1 head cauliflower, pulsed through processor
- 1/2 cup almonds, pulsed through food processor (and slightly toasted)
- 1 bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped finely
- 1 bunch fresh mint chopped finely
- 1 bunch green onions, sliced thinly
- 1 lemon zest and juice
- 1 long english cucumber, seeded and diced
- 1 granny smith, diced and tossed in lemon juice
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- Cut cauliflower into little florets and add to bowl of food processor, and pulse until cauliflower has texture of couscous. Transfer into a large mixing bowl.
- Add whole almonds to food processor and pulse till they get to a grainy texture. Transfer to a pan on low heat for about 10 minutes or until slightly toasted. Add to mixing bowl with the cauliflower.
- Chop parsley, mint, and green onions very finely, add to cauliflower almond mixture and toss. Add chopped green apple and cucumber.
- Zest and juice lemon, pour into the salad and toss to combine.
- Allow the tabbouleh to sit for a couple hours if possible to allow flavours to come out fully. (if you have enough time)
- Serve as a light meal on it's own or enjoy with chicken kebabs.