Sweet Summer Tabbouleh Salad Recipe

This Sweet Summer Tabbouleh Salad Recipe comes with a very British Summer twist, and is a savoury accompaniment to smoked mackerel.

Serves 4

Image: Nicola Wilkinson


  • 1 cup of quinoa
  • 2 cups of water (to cook the quinoa)
  • 3 spring onions (sliced into rounds)
  • 1 large handful of finely chopped mint leaves
  • 1 large handful of finely chopped parsley
  • Juice of half a lime
  • 5 large strawberries cut into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ a cucumber (diced)
  • 2 large handful of rocket leaves
  • 1 large handful of watercress (torn into pieces)
  • Several Nasturtium leaves (sliced into strips)
  • A few Nasturtium flowers (some torn apart to separate the petals and a couple left whole to serve)
  • heaped tablespoon of sesame seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Add the quinoa and water to a large pan, bring to the boil then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 mins until the water is absorbed. Remove from the heat and stir through with a fork when cool.
  2. Finely chop the parsley and mint and add to the cooled quinoa, along with the lime juice, olive oil and vinegar. Now add the cucumber and the watercress, rocket and nasturtium leaves, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
  3. Add the sesame seeds to a hot frying pan and toast for a couple of minutes shaking regularly to prevent them from burning. They are ready when they have turned golden and smell like popcorn. Remove from the heat and pour into a container to cool.
  4. Finally, add the chopped strawberries, cooled sesame seeds and the nasturtium petals. Combine gently with a spoon or your hands. Add a couple of nasturtium flowers to decorate. Tabbouleh is great on its own or you can serve it with a savoury accompaniment (I used peppered smoked mackerel as this is currently seasonal in Britain).
Sweet Summer Tabbouleh Salad Recipe

Recipe notes by Nicola Wilkinson

Tabbouleh is a Lebanese salad dish, traditionally made using finely chopped parsley with tomatoes, mint, onion, bulgur, and seasoned with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. I’ve added a British Summer twist to the dish by using seasonal produce and replaced the bulgur wheat with quinoa, to add a nutty flavour and extra protein.


Adding strawberries to the dish gives it a refreshing sweetness which works wonderfully with the mint and creates a perfect contrast to a savoury accompaniment like smoked mackerel. Nasturtiums (flowers and leaves) provide a peppery punch as well as adding a wow factor to the appearance of the dish.


To explore July’s seasonal bounty try using the following this month: Edible flowers like nasturtiums and borage, watercress, rocket, spring onions, summer herbs, courgettes, celery, tomatoes, beetroot, strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, blueberries, cherries, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, peas, beans and many more!


This dish keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days.


About this recipe

This recipe is courtesy of Nicola Wilkinson of Nicola Wilkinson Fitness


Nicola Wilkinson Fitness
Lewknor, Watlington OX49
07793 021 155 | nicolawilkinsonfitness.com

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