Reduced Fat Feta Cheese and Bulgur Salad
Hosting a casual summer gathering is so easy to achieve, even for the novice cook. Simple is always the best way to proceed. You don't really want to spend time in the kitchen but rather with your guests. To avoid this, here are a few tips:
1. Choose to present a small number of dishes using the finest quality ingredients.
2. Make sure dishes are closely related, so the shopping is minimal, and there is no waste.
3. Create a menu with dishes you can realistically achieve ahead of time and take minimal time to finish.
4. Try to accomplish as much prep the day before.
5. One or two hot dishes and several cold dishes for a summer spread should suffice.
6. Present foods in bowls or platters that relate to the food you have prepared, it adds a WOW factor to the table.
7. Prepare your best dishes and my final advise is never to attempt to prepare something you have never tried before to avoid an unpleasant surprise.
This salad is straightforward to prepare, zesty and delicious. There is no creativity here, I chose this to remind you that simple is easy and yummy and it is scrummy addition to your table. Have a look into my delicious salads on the blog HERE
Some are not sure what Bulgur is, so if you are one of them, please keep reading:
Bulgur, or cracked wheat as known to the West, is whole grain wheat that has been present in the Levantine and Turkish cuisine for millennia. The food of the region is derived from what the land produced, in the Levants, wheat has always been the main crop, grown around the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers region; hence it has always been the main ingredient cherished in our cuisine.
This dish can be achieved using any grain, but bulgur gives it a distinctive nutty flavour. I highly recommend Bulgur as part of your diet as Bulgur is very healthy, low in calories and helps in weight loss as it maintains the sense of being full for a more extended period compared to other foods. It has a low glycemic index GI which helps regulate blood sugar, high in fibre which improves the digestive system, not to mention its richness in iron, magnesium, thiamine. This salad is a diabetic-friendly dish (please read notes below).
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Start to finish: 30 minutes
cooking: 20 minutes
1 cup coarse bulgur
3 medium cucumbers
3 medium tomatoes
1/2 cup chopped dill
1 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped mint
1/4 cup chopped thyme (fresh zaatar)
6 chopped spring onion
1/3 cup almond slivers
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt
100 grams reduced-fat feta cheese
Black olives (optional)
· Bring a pot of water to the boil to the boil and cook the bulgur until soft but still al dente. It may take 15 to 20 minutes. Drain, place in a bowl and set aside to cool.
· Chop the cucumbers into small cubes and add the cooled bulgur, then add all the chopped herbs and green onions as seen in the video.
· Chop the tomatoes to any size you like and add to the bowl.
· Crumble the feta cheese and add to the bowl.
· dry toast the almonds and when cooled add to the bowl.
· sprinkle the salt o the sides then squeeze what equals 1/4 cup lemon juice, add olive oil and toss together.
· Adjust salt and tartness to your liking.
· This recipe is diabetic friendly. Use reduced-fat cheeses and add more vegetables.
· If coarse bulgur is hard to find the fine bulgur or any whole grain will work.
· For a gluten free option follow my recipe for cooking quinoa.
· The number of vegetables can be increased or reduced as you please and you can add anything you like.
· Adjust salt at the end as feta cheese contains a lot of salt.
· Store in a sealed container in the fridge for 2 days as the herbs discolour afterwards.
Per Serving (excluding olives): 321 Calories; 12g Fat; 13g Protein; 48g Carbohydrate; 11g Dietary Fibre; 6mg Cholesterol; 475mg Sodium.