Taboulé : Couscous Salad, The French Way
This couscous salad is what we call in France a taboulé. Its name is coming from the very famous tabbouleh, which is a Levantine parsley and bulgur salad. It has many variations throughout the Near East, the Arab World, in Cyprus and Armenia. Because of our colonial heritage, there is a big influence of Maghreb food in France. Couscous is actually one of the most popular dish there. That’s how taboulé arrived in French kitchens.
Taboulé can be found all year long in French supermarkets as a salad to eat on-the-go. During summer, a lot of people make their own and enjoy it with a barbecue, bring it at a picnic or when going camping.
There are as many ways of doing taboulé as there are people. Some cook the couscous in a broth when others soak it with the rest of the ingredients to make it inflate. Some add tomato paste or sauce, when others eat it just as is or with a salad dressing. You can also add sultanas, olives, almonds…
This taboulé recipe is easy, fast, and doesn’t require any cooking, which is a great thing when it’s hot outside. You just have to mix together the couscous, tomatoes, cucumber, red onion and herbs (parsley or mint) along with the lemon juice and olive oil. The juices of the finely diced vegetables and the olive oil are going to inflate the couscous. It is therefore best to make it the day before to allow the couscous to soak up the juices.
One of the great things with taboulé is that there are no ingredients that are going to go bad if left outside for a few hours. Plus, it is vegan! If you’re looking for a vegan dish to go with the taboulé, I recommend making the Moroccan vegan skewers that I did previously.
Taboulé, Couscous Salad
- ½ cup medium couscous 100 g
- 1 cup tomatoes 200 g
- 1 cup cucumber 130 g
- ¼ cup red onion 30 g
- ½ tbsp parsley or mint chopped
- ½ tbsp lemon juice 7 ml
- 1 tbsp olive oil 15 ml
- ¼ tsp salt
- Finely dice the tomatoes, red onion and cucumber, and put them in a bowl – with their juice – along with all the other ingredients.
- Mix well and refrigerate overnight.
- Enjoy cold or at room temperature.