BA’s Best Tabbouleh
The herbs are the star of this tabbouleh recipe—and require a bit of care. Make sure to use a very sharp knife so that you can slice through the parsley and mint just once. You don’t want to run your knife over them again and again or use a food processor; doing so will bruise the tender leaves and lead to a soggy salad. In classic recipes, like this one, there should only be enough bulgur and tomatoes to balance all those herbs, so keep the proportions in check. When tomatoes aren’t in season, you can replace them with pomegranate arils, which add a modern touch and gem-like look to the final dish. And, if you don’t eat gluten, you can swap bulgur for quinoa.
No matter how it’s made, tabbouleh is never served on its own in the Levant. Its bright, herby notes make it an ideal pairing for rich dishes like Seven-Spice Grilled Lamb Chops and Crispy Pita with Chickpeas and Yogurt called Fattet Hummus in Arabic.
Editor’s note: This recipe was originally published on July 31, 2019.
cup fine-grind bulgur
medium ripe tomatoes (about 1 lb. total)
cup fresh lemon juice
bunches of parsley, thick stems trimmed
cups mint leaves
scallions, very thinly sliced crosswise
tsp. ground allspice
Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Place bulgur in a small bowl and cover with boiling water by 1″. Let sit until bulgur is soft and tender, 20–30 minutes.
Finely chop tomatoes and transfer to a large bowl (juices and all). Add lemon juice and bulgur to bowl; season with salt, then toss to combine.
Rinse parsley under cold water and shake to get rid of excess water. Working in batches and starting at stem end, finely slice stems and leaves with your sharpest knife, making one even pass. This is so the parsley doesn’t get bruised or wilt and stays light in the salad (you should have about 4 cups).
Gather mint leaves in a tight bunch and repeat same slicing motion as you did with the parsley.
Add parsley, mint, scallions, and allspice to bowl with bulgur mixture; toss to coat in lemon juice. Drizzle with oil; season with salt and pepper. Toss once more and serve immediately.