Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Life beyond sandwiches (?)

I am the sandwich queen. Oh yes. Given half a chance (not even that, if I'm being honest), I would feast on this most perfect of food forms morning, noon and night. Mmmmm, sandwiches...

Not good for someone who likes to cook, is it?

But – and I can’t believe I’m going to say this – sometimes, just sometimes, I get a teensy bit tired of two bits of bread with something slapped between them. And then I start thinking about salads. I dream about beautiful, ripe tomatoes bursting with the taste of summer, soft, buttery lettuce and spiky rocket, peppery radishes, the refreshing aniseed flavour of fennel… and oooh, anything else that can be chopped, diced, sliced and chucked into a bowl with some kind of interesting dressing. Mmmmm, salad…

This recipe comes from Tossed, which I optimistically brought along in the car when we moved over, so I could make delicious salads for hazy, hot summer days. Well, the current weather situation has well and truly scotched that little day dream. Never mind.

I wanted something quite substantial to munch on, a main course kind of salad for lunch, so I plumped for what is really tabbouleh but with some salty feta crumbled on top. Very easy to put together, it's one of those dishes that tastes disproportionately wonderful in relation to the small amount of time you need to put it together. In fact, I had it for breakfast the day after I made it because I couldn't wait until lunchtime, which either means that it's delicious or I'm greedy - or perhaps both.

Bulgar, feta and parsley salad from Tossed

Makes enough for two servings.

You'll need:

90g/1/2 cup of bulgar wheat
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tbsp chopped mint
4 spring onions, finely chopped (I didn't have enough so I threw in some radishes too)
2 firm ripe tomatoes, halved, seeded and diced
1 Lebanese cucumber, halved, seeded and diced
100g feta, crumbled
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil

1. Put the bulgar wheat in a large bowl and add enough hot water to cover. Leave to soak for 15 to 20 minutes, or until tender. Drain well, then thoroughly squeeze out all the excess liquid.
2. Gently toss the bulgar in a bowl with all the remaining ingredients.
3. Season with salt and pepper, and mix together well. Leave for about an hour to let the flavours mingle.

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