Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Acili Bulgur Pilavi -- Bulgur Pilaf with Peppers and Tomatoes

I remember having bulgur served in this manner in Turkey several times, and always thought it was fabulous. But when I tried to fix it on my own, I never quite got it right. This recipe, however, from a new cookbook I recently bought (Sultan's Kitchen by Ozcan Ozan) is just perfect. I fixed this dish last night for my family, and my kids just devoured it. I'd increased the recipe to have some leftovers for lunches -- but there were none!


4 tablespoons unsalted clarified butter (I used olive oil)
1 large Spanish onion, diced (1 cup)
1 small Italian green pepper, finely chopped (1/4 cup)
1 1/2 cups coarse-grain bulgur, washed and drained
3 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped (2 cups)
2 1/2 teaspoons Turkish red pepper or ground pepper paste **see note below
2 1/2 cups chicken stock or hot water
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh Italian parsley


In a heavy, medium-size saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat and cook the onion gently for 2 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon, until it's softened but not brown. Stir in the green pepper, bulgur, tomatoes, Turkish red pepper, and stock. Season with salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat, cover the saucepan, and cook gently for about 15 minutes, or until the bulgur has absorbed all the liquid. Let the mixture stand, covered, for about 5 minutes; then stir in the parsley, and serve.


The Turkish red pepper or ground red pepper he's talking about is usually not a very hot pepper, but extremely flavorful. The pepper paste, which is very popular in Turkey and good in this dish, is called biber salci, and can be found in many Middle Eastern grocery stores, or online at the link below:

1 comment:

Manya said...

I agree - this is the best! I had the cookbook, but found your recipe on the blog so I could email it to my daughter, who is vegan. She should love this! It was great made with Hatch chiles, homegrown tomatoes and Aleppo pepper.

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