Tabouleh Salad and Lentil Soup

OK, so I am off and running finally. Welcome to my first post. First of all I’d like to thank the forty people who checked out my blog even before I put out a recipe. I’d also like to thank the two people who subscribed (even if one of them was my wife). OK enough of that, let’s get started.

Tonight’s menu was Middle Eastern tabouleh salad and a lentil soup using Middle Eastern and Indian spices. OK, so I know those of you who know me are thinking “He’s Polish, right?” Why in the world would he start his blog debut with not only vegetarian dishes but vegan friendly dishes as well? Well, truth be known, a while back I did a two year stint as a vegetarian. During that time I crafted some new skills and learned how to cook with new ingredients and spices.

Ingredients

2 large heads of curly leaf parsley or 3 medium or 4 small (you get the idea personal preference here)

1 cup of brown bulgar wheat size 0 or 1 (available at any MiddleEastern market)

1/2 red bell pepper chopped fine

1/2 orange bell pepper chopped fine

4 tomatoes (roma if possible)

2 celery stalks chopped fine

6 green onions, white and green parts chopped

12 to 20 mint leaves chopped (depending on how much you like)

Equal parts lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil (start with 1/4 cup each)

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice (not MiddlEastern seven spice)

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper

2 cups of water 

Directions

Place bulgar wheat and water into a bowl and stir slightly. Roughly chop the leaves off the heads of parsley leaving them held together in bunches by small stalks. Place in salad spinner, rinse and spin until very dry. Chop parsley very fine, you really cant go too fine here leaving behind as much stalk as possible.  Mix all of the veggies minus the tomatoes in a large bowl with the parsley. Squeeze out as much water as possible from the bulgar in your hands and add to the mix. Mix olive oil, spices, and lemon juice in  bowl and whisk until well combined. Stir the olive oil mixture and the tomatoes into the bowl and let sit for 10 minutes to absorb the flavors. Serve with pita bread and enjoy. 

The finished product

At the Table

 Lentil Soup

Ingredients

1 medium onion chopped

2 carrots finely chopped

2 celery stalks finely chopped 

 2 cups of split red lentils (Masoor Dal)

9 cups of water

1 tablespoon Better Than Boullion Vegetarian soup base

2 to 3 teaspoons of ground cumin powder

1 teaspoon of ground coriander powder

1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt to start (then to your liking)

1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked white pepper to start (then to your liking)

1 to 2 bay leaves

4 tomatoes (roma if possible) chopped

Optional ingredients  

Curry powder to taste

Chopped fresh hot pepper to taste (Indian, Serrano, Jalapena etc)

At the table

 

Directions

Saute onion, carrots, and celery until partially soft. Add all the spices except the Better than Boullion soup base and bay leaves until lightly toasted and fragrant. Deglaze the pan with one cup of water. Simmer for a few minutes. Add the remaining 8 cups of water, Better than Boullion and bay leaves and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and simmer until the lentils are very soft and falling apart, approximately 10 more minutes. Serve with the above tabouleh and pita bread and enjoy. 

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6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Joyce A. Hughes on December 9, 2010 at 12:05 am

    Congratulations, Ken! Best wishes on this new adventure. If your mom’s cooking was an incentive, then I know you will be successful. Her Polish cusine has delighted my taste buds in previous years, especially at Christmas time. Aunt Joyce

    Reply

  2. Posted by John on December 9, 2010 at 8:10 am

    Can’t wait to try this myself. I remember having it at your house and it was fantastic. Good luck with the venture.

    John

    Reply

  3. Posted by Mike on December 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm

    This is really cool,I’d like to try the soup.cheers!!!

    Reply

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