Need a Quick Meal or Side Dish?
Written by Gayle
Back when our family was small and finances were thin, I learned to cook pretty economically. Here is a light main dish or simple side dish from those lean days that we still love.
A few years ago I bought a 10-lb bag of Bulgur Wheat and dry-canned it with an oxygen absorber, and since then I have made pilaf for pennies per serving. We have bulgur wheat in our bulk section, and we also carry Bob's Red Mill Bulgur. Bulgur can be used in soups and baked goods, too. This pilaf recipe is a great way to try it if you've never had it.
Bulgur is whole wheat that has been parboiled and dried, then ground. It is used a lot in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking. If you've ever had tabbouleh, you've eaten bulgur! Here
is a recipe for Authentic Lebanese Tabbouleh that sounds amazing.
These amounts will serve 2 for a main dish, or 4 for a side dish.
First, heat 1 TBSP of olive oil or butter in a sauté pan that has a lid.
Then pour 1/2 cup of bulgur wheat into the pan and stir it around while it heats and starts to get toasty-brown.
This will take about 5 minutes, depending on how hot your pan is. Don't let any of it burn!
This is The Super-Easy Version:
Turn the heat down and add 1 cup of water (it will boil up and steam like crazy), 1 tsp beef or vegetable flavoring, and 1/4 cup of frozen mixed vegetables.
For Slightly More Labor:
If you'd like to use fresh vegetables, just chop them into small pieces and steam them for a few minutes to get them partially cooked before you add them to the bulgur.
Bring the mixture to a simmer, cover with a tight lid, and then let it lightly simmer for about 10 minutes. You'll want to check it every few minutes.
When the water is absorbed and the vegetables are tender, it is done! You can serve it either hot or cold.
I usually make this as a side dish for dinner, and then have leftovers as the main dish for lunch.
Bulgur is a whole grain, so it is chock-full of healthy nutrients and fiber. It is filling and delicious, with a wonderful nutty flavor! This can be a great addition to any of your Spring-time meals!