This will be my lunch today. Those home-grown tomatoes that are sitting on my counter have been taunting me, for some reason, with thoughts of tabooli. But at my local, oft-lamented, less-than-gourmet HEB grocery store, there’s no point in even looking for bulgur wheat. It dawned on me in a flash of inspiration, though, that I do have some quinoa in the cupboard. There’s not a whole lot of difference in taste/texture between quinoa and bulgur, and in my not-necessarily-supported-by-facts supposition, it’s healthier too. So I decided to make it with the quinoa.
Recipes abound for tabooli, as do spelling variants, but I decided to go with my tried-and-true recipe. When it comes to recipes, I don’t throw much away. I even have them somewhat organized, which for a cataloging librarian shouldn’t be that surprising, but is. When I was still living in Austin, in the 70′s, I took a cooking class through UT’s Community Education, called Middle Eastern Cooking. I had never eaten Middle Eastern cuisine, but I loved the class, in which we made things like Um Jadra, Hummus, homemade Pita Bread, and stuffed squash. Tabooli, too. And of course, I kept the recipe handout from the class. It’s stained with olive oil and good spices.As it turns out, I decided to just use the ingredients and make up the amounts as I went along. I also added diced cucumber.