Spring tabouleh

Spring tabouleh

Real Food by Mike
Alan Benson

The recipe is called spring tabouleh, but you can take the same approach using seasonal ingredients throughout the year. I’ve suggested ways to cut the vegetables, but you can dice them or cut them however you wish. If you’re gluten-free, use cooked quinoa instead of the burghul. Pomegranate molasses is a nice touch in the dressing to add viscosity and a tart flavour. If you spot fresh pomegranates, the seeds are also nice little jewels to scatter through the salad.


Quantity Ingredient
150g burghul
125ml extra-virgin olive oil, plus 1 tablespoon extra
1 lemon, juiced
4 heirloom tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 bunches flat-leaf parsley, shredded
1/2 bunch spring onions, thinly sliced
1 bunch green asparagus, thinly shaved lengthways
155g fresh peas, blanched
200g snow peas, roughly sliced
1 fennel bulb, shaved, fronds reserved
1/4 savoy cabbage, diced
1 broccoli head, shaved
2 tablespoons sumac, plus extra for sprinkling


  1. Soak the burghul in boiling water (1:1 volume ratio of water to burghul), with a pinch of salt and the extra tablespoon of olive oil. Cover and allow to cool so all the liquid is absorbed.
  2. Whisk the lemon juice and olive oil together to make a dressing.
  3. Toss the burghul with all the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. The burghul will absorb the dressing, so only dress the salad when you’re ready to serve. The sumac is good tossed through the salad along with a little more sprinkled on top.

Medicinal Benefit

  • Broccoli is a super-vegetable. It’s a rich source of vitamin C, a powerful natural antioxidant and an immunity booster. It’s also packed with vitamin A, vital for healthy eyesight and for preventing macular degeneration of the retina. Broccoli leaves are an excellent source of vitamin A as well as carotenoids, containing three times more than the florets. Broccoli also contains vitamin K and B complex vitamins; the florets even contain some omega-3 fatty acids. Certain compounds in broccoli can help protect against some cancers. Parsley is rich in all manner of potent antioxidant nutrients, including pro-vitamin A, beta-carotene, vitamins C, E and K and folates. It also contains a volatile oil called myristin, which has been shown to inhibit tumour formation, particularly in lung tissue.
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