Quinoa Tabbouleh

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If you’ve never had tabbouleh, you’re missing out! It’s a Middle Eastern dish that is traditionally made with bulgur wheat, but I couldn’t find any in the grocery store so I substituted quinoa instead! Tabbouleh is packed with veggies and herbs and I threw in some feta cheese (even though it’s more part of the Mediterranean diet) because – well – I love feta cheese. I think it goes really well with these fresh flavors. I also added in a green bell pepper because I had it in the fridge and didn’t want it to go bad, but it’s not traditionally used in tabbouleh. If you’re trying to watch your weight or you just want to eat healthy, this dish is definitely for you! Quinoa is the new “it” grain, but it’s actually a seed cultivated mostly in Peru, Bolivia, and Ecuador. It’s loaded with protein and is also a good source of iron, magnesium, and phosphorous. Guess what else? Quinoa is naturally gluten-free! So all of you that have to say no to so many grains can say yes to quinoa!

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I’ve been in Charleston for about two weeks now and I’m really loving it! I’m learning a lot working for Seabrook Island Club. A work day for me usually entails working at the Pelican’s Nest (beach side restaurant at Seabrook Island Club) from 10 am – 4 pm or 4 pm – 11 pm. Unless of course I work a double, which unfortunately I have to this upcoming Friday. I have been shadowing the managers these first two weeks, but yesterday I actually opened up the restaurant by myself. So far I’ve learned how to put the daily specials into the POS (Point of Sale) system – how the servers send food to the kitchen/ring up people’s checks; how to schedule the servers’ work week; how to assign table sections to servers; how to input sales data into an Excel spreadsheet to get a manager’s report for the day; and how to deal with problems. Problems can range from a server who rang up a salad with chicken instead of steak and needs the item deleted on the check or angry customers that were disappointed with their meal or service. I’m excited to see what else I’ll learn while I’m here! I think the experience I’m getting is the most valuable thing I’ll take away from this internship. I really am enjoying it though…the people I work with are awesome, the ocean right in front of my restaurant is beautiful, and the thought of my friends and family visiting and me showing them around the city and my work is making me so stoked!

Quinoa Tabbouleh (little maddie’s original):

Prep Time: 30 minutes          Cook Time: 5 minutes          Servings: 4-6

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 bell pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 red onion, quarter sliced
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1/2 pint cherry (or grape) tomatoes, halved
  • 4 oz. container crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon mint, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 1/4 cup EVOO
  • S & P to taste 

Prepare quinoa according to package’s directions. Place vegetables in a large mixing bowl. When quinoa has cooled, add it to the mixing bowl. Add feta and herbs. Mix in the lemon juice, EVOO, and S & P. Stir to combine. Enjoy!

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love, maddie

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