Tabouli salad is definitely a staple of the Levantian kitchen, made slightly differently from country to country.
But tabouli is actually a salad primarily made of finely chopped parsley.
What is Tabouli Salad?
It seems to have originated in the Middle Ages as an alternative to all the meat heavy foods of those days.
I would assume it originated from people who did not have easy access to meat, and therefore turned to plants.
There are variations to how this salad is made depending on which country you are in.
White or green onions, even red ones sometimes along with cucumbers, all can be found in tabouleh salad.
How to Make Tabbouleh Salad
My salad recipe starts with getting a bunch of the freshest parsley I can find, and washing it well.
Then the leaves are picked off the thicker stalks, since the stalks are not as tasty as the leaves.
The same goes for the mint leaves, we just want the leaves and no stems.
Then add the olive oil, lemon juice soaked bulgur and stir until well mixed.
Traditionally served on top of lettuce leaves, this Middle Eastern salad is fresh and delicious.
Is Tabouli Gluten Free?
Some people just leave the bulgur out of their salad if they are gluten intolerant, and others use quinoa instead.
What Are the Benefits of Parsley?
Parsley is full of antioxidants, which help prevent and repair cellular damage, these are in the form of carotenoids, flavonoids and vitamin C.
There are lots of nutrients in parsley such as vitamin K, and A with potassium, and folate.
Low in calories parsley also possesses bone building vitamins and minerals that help with bone density.
Parsley has antibacterial properties, improves heart health, and has cancer fighting properties.
Add parsley to your food in quantities larger than just a garnish for added healthy benefits.
The Other Ingredients
Mint – Mint has a ton of benefits including the ability to help with indigestion, and other bowel issues.
Tomatoes – Reduce the risk of heart disease, boost digestive health, good for your vision, and so many other benefits.
Lemon Juice – Lemon juice has cancer fighting properties, as well as aiding in digestion, and can help with weight loss.
What is not to like about this amazingly healthy salad?
Salad And the Arab Table
Where Did the Arab Salad Come From?
The Persians were big eaters of salad, as well as the Romans and Greeks, all of whom influenced foods in the Levant.
In early days food was foraged from the wild, with most people having little access to wildstock.
I would assume the green leaves of edible plants were eaten on a routine basis as the main form of sustenance.
During Roman times vegetables were dipped in, and seasoned with, salt water as a way to preserve them.
Those methods of preservation were the predecessor to modern day salad dressings.
The Arab peasants who worked the land were able to incorporate olive oil and lemons which grew locally as a way to preserve their food.