Monday, August 31, 2009

Bulgur is my New Best Friend

As promised, here is #98 of Mark Bittman's 101 Simple Salads for the Season.

98. Toss cooked bulgur with cooked chickpeas, quartered cherry or grape tomatoes, a little cumin, lots of chopped parsley, and lemon juice.

Once again, the obvious question is "how much?" How much bulgur? How many chickpeas? How many tomatoes, cumin, parsley and lemon juice?

Bittman trusts that readers will figure it out for themselves, but I'm not so confident I can pull it off. I guess I'll have to wing it...

Instead of cooking raw chickpeas, I took the way out and opened up a can. Unsure of how to cook bulgur, once again, I turned to The Joy of Cooking (page 266).

Here are the basic instructions for cooking bulgur:

1 cup bulgur to 2 cups of water. Rinse bulgur. Bring water to a boil, add bulgur. Return to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and cook for about 15 minutes until soft.

In this case, I substituted 1 cup of water with Avo's homemade chicken broth to enhance the flavor.

I think I overdid it with the parsley (Bittman did say "lots" after all), but I got it just right with two lemons. I regret that I used both cherry and grape tomatoes since it would have looked better with just one type. Oh well. No biggie.

The result was nutritious and delicious!

Encouraged by my success with bulgur, I jumped to:

92. Simmer a cup of bulgur and some roughly chopped cauliflower florets until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Toss with chopped tarragon, roughly chopped hazelnuts, minced garlic, Dijon mustard, olive oil and lemon juice.

After the first bite, Avo declared "it's a winner!"

Who knew bulgur could be so yummy?

Up next: #37.

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