Inside the Picnic Basket: Layered Hummus, Bulgar & Feta Salad

We all have a meal to prepare for Diner en Blanc to pack inside our picnic baskets for the most enchanting evening of the summer. In this new series, we bring the stories and recipes of local chefs and food lovers to help inspire your own magical meal. We are pleased to present the sixth installment of Diner en Blanc inspired recipes!

Annie Mulligan is returning for her second Diner en Blanc Philadelphia event. She is the Culinary Specialist at Williams-Sonoma at Brinton Lake. She also has a catering business called A Brit Different specializing in intimate catering services. For more information on catering, you may reach Annie at annie@anniemulligan.com. This year for Diner en Blanc, Annie is planning to pack a selection of charcuterie & cheeses, a simple green salad, pecorino & black pepper cheese straws, as well as summer fruits in Pimms and champagne with lavender shortbread. Annie would like to share a recipe with everyone that they may pack in their basket as well.

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Layered Hummus, Bulgar & Feta Salad

Ingredients
2 x 200g tubs hummus or make your own
400g can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
200g pack feta cheese, broken into chunks
handful pitted black olives
1 crisp Romaine heart
flatbreads, to serve

For the tabbouleh
85g bulgar wheat
80g bunch mint, leaves finely chopped
80g bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped
2 large ripe tomatoes, deseeded and chopped
1 red onion, finely chopped
zest and juice 1 lemon
4 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

Method
First, make the tabbouleh. Tip the bulgar into a saucepan, cover with water, season with salt, then bring to the boil and simmer for 15 mins until tender. Drain in a sieve, rinse under cold running water, then leave to drain over the pan. Mix the mint and parsley with the tomatoes, onion and drained bulgar. Whisk the lemon zest and juice and oil together with seasoning, then toss with the bulgar.

Spoon the hummus into the bottom of a portable picnic bowl or large Tupperware (or use a large plastic mixing bowl, as you can cover it tightly with cling film later). Scatter with the chickpeas, then sprinkle with seasoning and drizzle with a little oil. Spoon the tabbouleh on top. Now top with the feta and olives, then tear over the lettuce leaves.

Cover the bowl tightly with its lid or some cling film. Put a little more olive oil in a sealed container to take with you, then chill the salad for up to 24 hrs.

To eat, drizzle the olive oil over the leaves, then scoop the salad onto serving plates, making sure everyone gets a bit of each layer. Serve with the flatbreads for everyone to tear and share.

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