If I had to pick my top choice for whole grains this summer, the award would go to bulgur. Bulgur is a grain made from whole grain red wheat that has been parboiled, dried, and ground. This means that it’s quick cooking too, much like quick cooking oats. Or if you’re like me, no cooking is involved at all if you soak one cup of bulgur in two cups of water for a few hours or overnight. This was especially helpful to me this summer because we had some scorcher days going on and truth be told, Funk and I never installed our air conditioner. We’ve had some relatively hot days in the apartment, but nothing unbearable. However, turning on the oven or stove was not an option on so many of those hot days. Thank goodness for bulgur.
Once you have your bulgur ready, you can add in any combination of ingredients. To make it a one-dish meal, I make sure to load up on veggies and add in a protein. In this case, it’s peas for my Lemon Basil Bulgur with Peas and Artichokes. It’s a perfect side dish or main meal that will last you several servings throughout the week – plenty for dinners and some to pack in your brown bagged lunch.
2 cups Bob’s Red Mill bulgur
1 14 ounce can artichoke hearts, liquid reserved
1 12 ounce jar marinated artichoke hearts
1 bag frozen peas, defrosted
1 large bunch fresh basil (about 20 leaves)
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt to taste
1. Soak 2 cups bulgur in 4 cups water for 3 hours or overnight.
2. Drain the can and jar of artichoke hearts and cut into bite sized pieces. Reserve about ¼ cup of the liquid from the marinated artichoke hearts. Add artichoke hearts and the liquid to the bulgur. Mix in bag of peas.
3. Chiffonade basil leaves into thin strips using this method. Mix them into bulgur.
4. Squeeze the juice of one lemon into the mixture. Add salt to taste. Serve at room temperature.
Note: You may want to add another drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice the next morning to spruce it up, since most of the flavor will have been absorbed by the bulgur.
Join the Whole Grains Stampede by visiting the WGC website anytime from September 1-30, and telling Oldways about your favorite whole grain products bearing the Whole Grain Stamp. Your entry puts you in the running for a random drawing to win two crazy good prizes:
1st prize is $5,000 of grocery money and a year’s worth of Quaker whole grain products
2nd prize is an iPad2 loaded with health apps
What are you waiting for?! Head on over there and enter!