Remember when the only time you ate bulgur was in tabbouleh? It turns out that we got both the tabbouleh and the bulgur wrong. We misinterpreted the proportions — and the emphasis — of a proper tabbouleh, that Middle Eastern salad. It really should be mostly about the parsley, not about the grain. And the bulgur? Well, we relegated it to single-use status, unfairly.
Consider soup, for instance. Bulgur, a cracked wheat, cooks so quickly that it’s a perfect addition to any soup where you want a bit of its chew — not to mention its extra hit of protein.
When I spied a beautiful pureed beet soup in a cookbook the other day, it gave me the idea to roast the beets that were hanging out in my fridge, but also to throw in some bulgur (which cooked right in the broth) and kale for a little variety. All of a sudden, the soup was a chunky stew, and the bulgur got to play in a recipe that didn’t include a speck of parsley.
That’s just one idea, of many. Turns out bulgur is pretty versatile. Tabbouleh can wait for another day.