Tabouli twist

I like tabouli, but I don’t like raw onions. I also think kale has far more health benefits than parsley. This twist on an old classic delivers familiar tastes in a new way.

Ingredients
Half a large white onion. (See notes)

Half a bunch of kale (about 8 to 10 stalks) – destemmed, torn into pieces

One large tomato, seeded, cut into bite-size pieces (just use the fleshy parts)

½ teaspoon seasoning salt

Lemon juice to taste (at least a tablespoon)

Olive oil for sautéing

Method
Julienne the onion and sauté it in the olive oil. Add seasoning salt (I use “Aunt Cora’s”). Stir often, cooking it until the onion pieces are translucent but still firm. Do not caramelize or wilt them.

Meanwhile, steam the kale. About 5 minutes in, stir it with a fork to further reduce its size.

Remove half the onion to use later. (see notes) and add the tomatoes and kale.

Add lemon juice. Stir frequently. Do not let the tomatoes get mushy.

Notes
I find it easier to cook the entire onion and save off half of it for another use. Store in the refrigerator and use within 4 days.

Serve with couscous. (I find Near East brand very good – tasty, and simple to make)
Makes four servings.

Tzatziki sauce

Ingredients
2 containers (5.3 oz) plain Greek yogurt
1 cucumber
2 tablespoons olive oil
Juice of half a lemon
Pepper to taste
Garlic to taste (up to 3 cloves, minced)
Optional – 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill.

Notes
Cucumber prep – Peel and then shred the cucumber (use a cheese grater for that part.) Put the results in a colander over a bowl. Add a little salt. Mix it in with your hands. Allow this to sit in the fridge for about 20 minutes. Then press the cucumber shreds down, even squeezing the mass with your hands. The goal is to get the majority of moisture out.

Concord foods reconstituted lemon juice instructions says that 3 Tablespoons equals the juice of on medium lemon – so for this recipe, use 1.5 Tablespoons.

Do not use flavored yogurt – even vanilla. The yogurt must be plain. Greek yogurt yields a better texture – regular yogurt will make this runny.

Method
Mix all ingredients together. You can serve it immediately, but the flavors will be better if served the next day. Makes 5 generous servings.

Roasted chick peas

Ingredients
1 can (15 oz) chick peas (also known as garbanzo beans)
2 Tablespoons za’atar spice blend (found in Middle-Eastern grocery stores)
1 ½ teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 cup vegetable broth

Method
Combine all ingredients in a glass bowl. Allow to marinate in the fridge at least 3 hours or up to overnight.

Drain the liquid away.
(A fine-mesh sieve works well, but you will have to scrape out the spices and add them back to the chick peas).

Spread the remaining mixture of chick peas and spices onto a large cookie sheet that you have put a layer of aluminum foil on.

Roast at 400 degrees for 40 minutes, turning half way through.

The result is crispy, crunchy, tasty chick peas. Serve with couscous and tzatziki sauce.