The middle eastern staple sounds a lot more exotic than it is; bulgur (also spelt bulghur, bulgar and burghul) is what’s left after wheat grains have been steamed, dried, and crushed. High in fibre and protein, and low in fat and calories, bulgur makes a filling lunch or dinner without adding the pounds. It is useful to bear in mind that one cup of bulgur has fewer calories, less fat and more than twice the fibre of brown rice. Bulgur also has more fibre than oats, buckwheat and corn, and will help to keep your digestive tract healthy.
It is also an excellent source of vitamin B6, iron, potassium and zinc. Bulgur can be used in pilaff, soups, bakery goods or as stuffing. However my favourite way to use bulgur is in a salad, a must for any BBQ this summer. The freshness of mint, the tang of feta and the crunchy-tender texture makes this salad unforgettable.
If you are not a BBQ fan then serve this salad with lamb, chicken or roasted squash. The intensity of tomatoes, olives and cucumber also gives the wheat bulgur a bright boost making it irresistible to your dinner guests.
The leftovers are never thrown away in our house as they make a delicious, filling but low-calorie lunch to take to work in a tupperware box. Perfect if you are trying to drop a few pounds this summer!
Time: 30 mins
25g/1oz bulgur wheat
10 ripe cherry tomatoes
1/4 large cucumber
1 tin black olives
1 red onion
2 cloves garlic
1) Place the bulgur wheat in a small bowl and cover with 50ml/2fl oz of boiling water. Stir, then set aside to cool for 20 minutes, or until the bulgur wheat has absorbed all of the water.
2) Finely chop the garlic and the red onion and place in a large serving bowl.
3) Chop the tomatoes and the cucumber in quarters and add to the bowl.
4) Halve the olives and chop the mint and add to the salad.
5) When the bulgur wheat is cool enough add to the salad. Mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. Crumble the feta and drizzle over a little olive oil and lemon juice. Mix again and serve. Delicious!
I just wanted to let our readers know that we are going on holiday to Cork and Dublin for ten days and hope to pick up some great gourmet posts that we can share with you very soon.
Emma, Ross and Miles xxxx