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living with just a little less

Quinoa Cauliflower Tabbouleh

Getting fresh perspective isn’t always the easiest thing. Ever heard of tunnel vision (I sure have!)? With so many fixed elements in place in our lives, it can be difficult to break out of our routine, or look at life through a different lens, never mind through new eyes. Well, it’s Monday, friends – and here’s to the start of a brand new week!With spring here, we feel the urge to renew, and refresh. For me, this recipe represents an opportunity I recently got to do just that! I was delighted to open my email last week to find a fresh recipe sent just for me courtesy of a favourite blogger – the quirky and extremely clever writer and (dare I say) curator of This Sydney Life.

I simply adore tabbouleh (reminds of potlucks in the 80’s), with its minty freshness and light airy vibes, and this recipe has a twist that honestly knocked my socks off. It’s just so darned fresh! So I simply had to share it.

Fresh takes on old ideas are what makes the world go around according to my favourite clever & inspirational writer Paul Arden in his book “Whatever You Think Think The Opposite”.

So with that, I’ll get right to it – let the celebration begin!

Cauliflower Tabbouleh:

(1) small head cauliflower washed & cut into small florets
(1 and 3/4) cups water
(1) cup quinoa, dry
(1) bunch cilantro (about one cup chopped)
(1) bunch Italian flat leaf parsley (about 2 cups chopped)
(1) bunch mint (about one cup chopped)
(1/2) to (1) cup walnuts, chopped & toasted
(1/2) – (3/4) cup dried cranberries (or to your preference)
(2-3) tbsp olive oil
(2-3) tbsp of juice from one large lemon & zest
(1) tsp salt or to taste

Cook quinoa by combining the grain with the water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, turn heat to low (without raising the lid) and cook for 20 minutes. Once finished, remove lid and fluff with a fork while it cools in the pot. Wash and cut the cauliflower into small florets, saving the stem part for soup (or include it if you prefer). Chop into a 1-2 inch dice. This will produce 4-6 cups of chopped cauliflower.

throwCook cauliflower in boiling salted water or in a steamer for 6-8 minutes until tender. Drain and rinse quickly with cold water to cool.

Chop the walnuts and toast either in a dry pan over medium-high heat (stirring constantly) or in the oven until brown and fragrant. About 6-8 minutes in a 350-degree oven should do the trick! Zest half the lemon on a fine grater and juice the lemon afterwards. Add to a large mixing bowl along with the cooked quinoa & cauliflower, cranberries, walnuts, olive oil and salt. Gently toss everything to combine.

Next, wash your bounty of gloriously fragrant herbs under cold water and shake any excess water. Chop them all up and throw them in too – this is BY FAR the most wonderful part of this recipe! Stir everything together and enjoy! This dish will keep in the fridge at least a few days. I served it the first time this week with these millet burgers and a nice green salad. Wonderful!

What was wonderful to me was my frame of mind when I first made this – normally I would chop my herbs super fine – but given the amounts of greens and the presence and size of the cauliflower in this recipe, it was liberating and totally refreshing to chop the herbs like I would for a salad – the original recipe called for cup measurements which worked out to roughly a bunch of each of the 3 stars of this dish.

I’ll let you be the judge as to how you’d tackle this, and I sure would love to know! I simply delighted in this recipe. The smells of the herbs (mint lovers heaven!) – and the combo and the sheer amounts of the 3 thrilled not only my senses but those I have (already) shared it with (I’ve now made it twice). Cooking and sharing is but one small way we can open ourselves up to outside views, totally fresh perspectives we would otherwise miss. Thanks to all you bloggers and readers (and dare I say friends!) out there, there is a world of endless possibilities out there…just waiting…

46 responses to “Quinoa Cauliflower Tabbouleh

    1. Yes, it was such a refreshing combination – a brilliantly current way to make an old favorite seem brand new! I just adore this combo – thanks Ishita, I hope you like it as much as I do..have a wonderful day!

  1. Yum! I love that you added cranberries to tabbouleh! I am going to suggest that to my mom when she makes her next time 🙂

    I’m so happy spring is here too 🙂 Plus it’s sunny out- has me feeling all joyful!

    Lovely post as usual my dear!

    1. Isn’t it gorgeous? Can’t take credit for this combo (but it spoke to me right away as I add dried cranberries to everything!!) – love the sharing, it makes everything so much more fun! Happy Monday Gabby 😉 xo

  2. Oh my! Serious tabbouleh lovers here. It’s actually a personal favorite for the hubs. I truly can’t wait for my herbs to flourish, but this recipe make me want to cheat and stir up something this beautiful for our weekend ahead to share with family. Thank you for sharing ladies!

    1. Fabulous! Yes, in the summer, this combo will be a snap, especially when you can walk out into the garden and put it all together in a few minutes…and just perfect for a family gathering! I love it – and I think they will too! Cheers Hillery, Happy Monday! 🙂

  3. Shira – I wish I could bottle you! You make this lovely yet oh-so-simple recipe sing! Your pics (as ever) are gorgeous and you have re-ignited my enthusiasm for what has been a kitchen staple at our house. You’re a wee legend, my friend. Mwah!

    BTW – I’m looking forward to seeing how you turn my other recipe (sweet AND alcoholic) into something healthy!!!

    Big hugs from Sydney, Jx

    1. Oooooh! You are so kind..truthfully I was a little terrified to post about someone else’s creation – you know you just never know if you might just do something wrong! But really, with such beautiful ingredients it was such lovely fun! Thank you so much for sharing – what a treat!
      Love that you love! 😉
      Lots more to come……mangoes and booze? Now THAT’S a match!!!!
      xo back!

    1. Thanks Marina! Great to hear from you – loving all the wonderful photographs you keep putting out! Loved this exchange – meeting blogging friends is such a blast! Isn’t it? 😉

  4. Shira, I love absolutely everything everything everything about this post! I must try the recipe, love love all the ingredients in tabbouleh and love cauliflower and dried cranberries. your photos are wonderful, and the quotes from the great minds and hearts, perfect. Great post. Great Monday! Good grief, great everything! 🙂 xo

    1. Thanks Spree – that is precisely what I thought when I opened the recipe and read through the ingredient list – love, love, love, love! – that’s why I made it straight away, not once but twice!
      I think I’ve even seen a few of these types of foods poking around your sight 😉 Further proof that great minds DO think alike! THAT is such a good thing too! Cheers! 😉

  5. Great springtime recipe! I enjoy the fact that it has my favorite herb — fresh mint. I like to make my tabbouleh with a lot of herbs too, with mint being present in the highest proportion. However I have never tried tabbouleh with dried cranberries before, and the thought of cranberry + mint flavor in my mouth is making it water! Excited to try this recipe!

    1. We share the same fave spring herb 🙂 It’s such a beautiful combo with the cranberry – love to know how you like it! Cheers Frances! xo

  6. Tabbouleh is my absolute favourite – making it with quinoa is genius, and I’ve never had cauliflower in tabbouleh but seeing as I love cauli that shouldn’t be an issue at all! Great quotes too – and on a totally random note, I love the font you use in your quotes 😉

    1. Hi Anna! Thanks! There are so many fresh ideas to this recipe that it’s hard not to smile, isn’t it? 🙂 Funny about the font, sometimes I think it’s hard to read….maybe it can stay after all, glad you like! xo

  7. Hi! Just stopping by to let you know how much I enjoy your blog! Today, I nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award. Please see today’s post for details. Thanks for all you do!

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