Broad Bean Bulgur

Bulgur is a stable ingredient of the East Mediterranean diet for centuries. Romans and Egyptian used to eat it since 1000BC. There is even reference in The Old Testament to the wheat grain. Bulgur is made from durum wheat. The grains are bar-boiled, dried again in the sun, partially de-branned then ground to the desired grain size. Traditionally it comes in two varieties, fine used in Tabouleh and Kibbeh and coarse used in pilafs.

In the UK, Bulgur became very fashionable in the last few years partially due to its good nutritional value and partially due to few celebrity chefs incorporating it in their dishes and introducing it to the nation. It is now sold in most high street supermarket but unfortunately only the fine variety is widely available, You still needs to make the effort to go to the nearest Middle Eastern shop to buy course Bulgur for pilafs. If not please don't let that put you off use the fine variety even for cooking.

In Syria, Bulgur is an important part of the diet and an essential ingredient in many dishes, Tabouleh and Kibbeh being the most famous. Bulgur was traditionally the main grain in Syrian cuisine. It used to be served next to stew type dishes almost on daily basis. This role was slowly taken by rice over the second half of the last century. As expected Bulgur is making a come back to that role due to , like in the UK, increased awareness to its nutritional value.

Apart from a being a delicious side Bulgur could be a full dish in its own right. Bulgur pilaf dishes have an wonderful texture and beautiful nutty flavour. There are tens of these dishes depending to the main ingredient added to Bulgur. Mujadara is the most popular of these dishes and it is made from lentils and bulgur. Other classic ingredients to add to these pilafs includes tomatoes, courgettes and aubergines.

Today's dish is a quick one-pot Bulgur broad bean pilaf (Burghul bi Ful as we call it in Syria). It takes no more than 30 minutes to make this hearty delicious dish. The dish can be easily adapted to a vegetarian one by simply not using meat.

Here is my Broad Bean Bulgur recipe:

Coarse Bulgur 400g
Mince lamb 400g
Fresh or frozen broad beans 400g
Clarified ghee butter 1tbsp (Olive oil if you opted for the vegetarian version)

Wash and soak the Bulgur in plenty of cold water for 15 minutes.

Start by frying the mince meat in the ghee butter. Season with salt and pepper. Add the broad beans and cook for few minutes. Drain the Bulgur and add to the pot. Add boiling water till you cover all the ingredients and roughly an extra inch of water on the top. Bring back to quick boil, stir well then turn the heat to medium and cook for around 15 to 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and let set for another 10 minutes.

Fluff with a fork and serve with Greek style yoghurt.


مترجم سوري said...

قتلتني الصورة
قررت ابعت شكوى للبلوغ سبوت ليوقفوك عن التدوين
هالوضع ما عاد ينحمل
خافوا الله يا جماعة
عايشة عالبسكوت و الشاي
وانت على كل ضرس لون
وين العدالة بهالكوكب

Unknown said...

Mmm, yum! I am slowly trying more and more bulgur dishes. I would love the vegetarian version of this one! Need to wait for Melbourne's Spring though, for the broad beans! (I want fresh!)

Kano said...

Why live on biscuits and tea? You have very easy recipes to follow. There are no excuses ;)

Isn't Bulgur a great ingredient to cook with!

Luiz Hara said...

I loved making the Mujadara for our London Cooking Club, this looks great too particularly for the the minced lamb which must add a richness to the dish. I will sure try this too.

Luiz @ The London Foodie

Bethany (Dirty Kitchen Secrets) said...

We don't have anything similar in Lebanon (at least i've not had it growing up) but it is something I'm really looking forward to trying now.

Bethany (Dirty Kitchen Secrets) said...

by the way... we make mjaddarah with rice... So is it correct to say in syria it's made using burghul?

Kano said...

I am planning to publish few Bulgur dishes. Just if I have the time!
So much going on in my life at the minute and very busy time at work I am finding it difficult to write anything.

Kano said...

Sorry for the late reply!
Do you have any bulgur dishes cooked in a similar manner but with different ingredients in Lebanon? we have quite few in Syria. Give this one a go and let me know.
We cook Mujadara both ways in Syria. Standard one is cooked with bulgur and the rice version we call it "Mujadara bi Riz"

tasteofbeirut said...

I know that people in south Lebanon cook their mujaddara with bulgur; I tried it and like it way better than with rice; however I have never had foul and bulgur growing up and it sounds just delicious

Anonymous said...

شكرا على هذه الوصفات الجميله، وأكثر ما يسرني أنك تذكر نوع اللحم المستخدم لأن هذا الموضوع يزعجني جدا لعدم خبرتي في اختيار قطع اللحم المناسبه، سؤال مهم البهارات المستخدمه (All Spices) هل تقصد بها البهار الحلو أم هي مجموعه من البهارات الجاهزة المتوفره في السوق؟

Kano said...


Welcome to my blog.

For this dish I only used black pepper. In most of my cooking I use black pepper and salt, nothing else.

If I want to add other flavours I use allspice. I never use ready-made spice mix you buy from shops.

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