I make soup…a lot. Often. Weekly at the very least. To me, the process of making soup is really therapeutic. Nostalgic – my mother always made incredible soups. The emotionally connected cooking of soup balanced with the random-to-haphazard-ness of throwing stuff in a pot & making it work is usually seen, by those who know me, as a sign of how I’m feeling. When soup is on the stove, I’m either in the groove of cooking & creating…or I’m in need of comfort – feeling some sort of way, as my friend Shameeka would say.
Even before the official dietary change, so many meatless soups have been cooked in my kitchen. Purees of green things. Pots of broth with lemongrass and noodles in them. Chunky bean soups and veggie chilis. So, in an effort to share those recipes with you, I’ve finally done what I’ve been saying I wanted to do for over a year. I’ve started The Saturday Soup. Every weekend, I’ll be posting a new soup recipe here on RWT. Make them that day, save them for some healthy Sunday night cooking or make a batch for an easy start of the week meal. There’s a good chance these recipes will come with their own story, too.
This soup was inspired by my recent foray into vegetarianism and the fact that Middle Eastern food has quickly become a staple of mine – it’s seriously veggie friendly. The herby salads, the great textures, the wonderful combination of tart & garlicky. It’s been a bit inspirational. It’s also been a great way to eat grains that are higher in protein & fiber than your average white rice. Honestly, I accidentally thought this soup up as a way to use up the last bit of bulgur left in a tin in the cabinet. This soup is light, good for you and so flavorful – a perfect resolution soup. Make this soup on purpose.
Tabbouleh Soup – serves 4
– For the bulgur: In a large bowl, combine 1 cup dried bulgur with enough (very) hot water to cover (about 2 cups). Allow to sit until tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Drain through a fine mesh strainer, cover and set aside.
– For the soup: In a medium stockpot, heat up olive oil. Add garlic and green onions and saute for 1 to 2 minutes – don’t let the garlic brown. Add vegetable stock, mint, half of the chopped parsley, and lemon juice. Simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and season with salt & pepper to your liking – this may require a good bit of salt depending on the vegetable stock you’re using. Stir in diced tomatoes and allow to cook for another minute or two.
– To serve: Place a large spoonful of the bulgur in the bottom of an empty soup bowl. Ladle the warm broth over the grains. Sprinkle the soup with the remainder of the fresh chopped parsley & drizzle with a bit of extra virgin olive oil for garnish. Serve immediately.