Trinidad is a multicultural group of people. And like our multicultural people, our food is the same way. We have cuisines from all over the world and at any point in time you can try Indian, creole, Chinese, Arabic and more. Today well be focusing on Arabic.
I love Arabic food. One of my adopted aunts is Arabica and she is always bringing food for us to try. Unfortunately their food is heavily influenced by wheat, but there are some dishes that can be created gluten free. One such dish that I like to recreate gluten free is Tabouli.
Tabouli or Tabouleh is a dish of Lebanese origin that is made from parsley, tomatoes, onion, bulgur wheat, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. It is fresh, earthy and delicious!
This dish is filled with freshness, full of flavor and traditionally wheat. When I was recreating this I tried to think of what would make a good substitute. Rice was not the right choice and then I thought of Quinoa.
Quinoa, which looks similar to bulgur wheat would be able to stand up to the acid from the lemon, and absorb the flavors of the dish. Plus it made the dish low carb, grain free and the perfect healthy side dish to add to my recipe tin.
Choosing your ingredients
This dish is made almost completely of fresh herbs and veggies that are served raw. With my allergies, when making this dish we try to use organic herbs and tomatoes from our garden or from locally sourced gardeners that we know provide us with clean produce. You would be surprised at how using organic herbs makes this dish shine and the flavors are amazing.
Lemon vs Lime. Lemons can be a bit hard to find at times in Trinidad so we’ve made this dish with either lemon juice or lime juice at times with delicious results.
Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, it’s time to start making our Tabouli. Hope you enjoy the recipe.
- 1/2 cup cooked quinoa (cooled)
- 2 cups freshly chopped parsley
- 2-3 medium Roma Tomatoes, diced
- 1 small cucumber, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large bowl, add all your ingredients except the salt and pepper. Toss until well combined and the quinoa is speckled throughout the parsely and vegetables.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. (We used abotu 3/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper)
- Refrigerate for about 30 minutes before eating, then enjoy as a side with your favourite meal or by itself.
Because this dish needs to be chilled, coconut oil doesn't work in this recipe.