spiel

There is rarely any ingredient variation in tabouli* and rarely would I ever call for any ingredient variation in a recipe whose roots are far older than my deadest ancestors. Tradition is to be respected.

However, this is an exception. It is made with quinoa and adds fresh basil and cilantro, all of which are no-no’s in the tabouli world. And it’s not because tabouli is not good as is, but rather because tabouli is often not great on this side of the Red Sea. It rarely makes you think about the next time you will eat tabouli. It rarely starts a conversation about tabouli. It rarely makes you want to roll around on the floor and shout out “mammmma,” which is the  actual definition of good food.

What I do propose is a recipe that gives you, or at least me,  exactly what I want to eat: a healthy, wheat-free, heart warming dish with protein whose fresh herbed flavors meld together and heighten the experience of the entire meal. It is both rich and light, food adjectives that are often hard to achieve in the same dish. I love to serve this as a side dish to my Spiced Lamb Skewers, but also enjoy it as a small meal on its own.

Remember, the key to making a good quinoa salad is to toss and dress it while it is still warm. And the key to any good food is to make it with love. Keep those two things in mind and life will seem easy...for at least a half hour or so.

*A Middle Eastern dish, tabouli is traditionally made with bulgar wheat, mint, parsley, lemon, olive oil and chopped tomato.

meal

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 ¼ cups finely chopped fresh mint
  • ½ cup finely chopped fresh parsely
  • ½ cup finely chopped fresh basil
  • ½ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 15 cherry tomatoes (heirloom when in summer season) quartered
  • 2 scant teaspoons salt
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil (*Watch video on how to choose the best olive oil.)
  • the juice of 2 lemons
  • the zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon wheat free-tamari (or good soy sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon Coconut Aminos or Braggs Aminos, which are available here or in health food stores)- or another 1/2 teaspoon wheat-free tamari
  1. Cook quinoa with water in a automatic rice cooker. Otherwise follow package instructions.
  2. When done, remove lid to let cool slightly.
  3. WHILE STILL WARM, add olive oil and salt and stir.
  4. Add fresh herbs. Stir.
  5. Add lemon and lemon zest.
  6. Add tomatoes. Stir.
  7. Add tamari (soy sauce) and coconut aminos. Stir.
  8. Let sit for at least an hour for flavors to harmonize

spiel

There is rarely any ingredient variation in tabouli* and rarely would I ever call for any ingredient variation in a recipe whose roots are far older than my deadest ancestors. Tradition is to be respected.

However, this is an exception. It is made with quinoa and adds fresh basil and cilantro, all of which are no-no’s in the tabouli world. And it’s not because tabouli is not good as is, but rather because tabouli is often not great on this side of the Red Sea. It rarely makes you think about the next time you will eat tabouli. It rarely starts a conversation about tabouli. It rarely makes you want to roll around on the floor and shout out “mammmma,” which is the  actual definition of good food.

What I do propose is a recipe that gives you, or at least me,  exactly what I want to eat: a healthy, wheat-free, heart warming dish with protein whose fresh herbed flavors meld together and heighten the experience of the entire meal. It is both rich and light, food adjectives that are often hard to achieve in the same dish. I love to serve this as a side dish to my Spiced Lamb Skewers, but also enjoy it as a small meal on its own.

Remember, the key to making a good quinoa salad is to toss and dress it while it is still warm. And the key to any good food is to make it with love. Keep those two things in mind and life will seem easy...for at least a half hour or so.

*A Middle Eastern dish, tabouli is traditionally made with bulgar wheat, mint, parsley, lemon, olive oil and chopped tomato.

what's your spiel?

5 comments
  1. Katie    1 year ago   · Reply

    I love this idea of getting extra nutrition from quinoa in tabouli. I think this one sounds so fresh and yummy. I have never heard of Coconut aminos. Does it taste like Brags liquid aminos or soysauce? Thanks for sharing.

    • ElanaHorwich    1 year ago   · Reply

      Hi Katie,
      It is kind of like braggs, but not quite the same. It has a sweet saltiness and I like it because it is not made from soy and has nutritious qualities. That said you can skip it, and just add a little more braggs and soy. But if you can get your hands on Coconut Aminos I think you will find many places to use it…particularly with my recipes. You should be able to find Coconut Aminos in health food stores. Where are you located?? If it helps you, I sell it for the convenience of my students through amazon on my site. http://mealandaspiel.com/category/shop/specialty-food/
      Please let me know how your quinoa tabouli comes out!!!! xo, Elana

  2. Tracy    1 year ago   · Reply

    In the recipe you don’t specify unit of measure for mint: “1 ¼ finely chopped fresh mint”. Do you mean cups or tablespoons? There are no guesses that make sense to me.

    • ElanaHorwich    1 year ago   · Reply

      Tracy, thank you so much for pointing out the typo. It’s 1 1/4 CUPS mint. Mint is an essential player in tabouli…the others herbs are there to create a more harmonious flavor. Enjoy!!