Christine Datian loves to share her Armenian recipes. In fact, we posted her Spicy Southwestern Tabbouleh recipe in September. This, and a number of her other recipes, were also featured in ‘Sunset’ and ‘Cooking Light’.
We promised to post another of Christine’s family-favorites, ‘Bulgur Pilaf with Onions and Tomato Juice’. She noted that her mother always adds about a 1/2 teaspoon dried basil and a dash of cayenne pepper to her bulgur pilaf for extra pizazz.
The dish can be made with either beef or chicken broth, but Christine prefers beef broth because it imparts a richer flavor. If adding a medium diced tomato, Christine suggests removing seeds first, as her grandfather from Lowell, MA used to do. “Adding the diced tomato and onions makes all the difference in the world – sautė them in the butter with the sharayea (fine noodles) first”, Christine said.
|Christine Datian’s Bulgur Pilaf with Onions and Tomato Juice, as made by The Armenian Kitchen
“This side is a savory complement to lamb, beef, or chicken. The ample yield allows for good leftovers.” –Christine Datian, Las Vegas
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 cup)
5 tablespoons butter
½ medium onion, finely chopped
3/4 cup crushed uncooked vermicelli
2 cups uncooked bulgur
2 cups hot fat-free, less-sodium beef broth
1 cup water
1 cup tomato juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion to pan, and sauté for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Add vermicelli to pan; cook for 2 minutes. Add bulgur to pan, and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and next 6 ingredients (through basil), and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Stir in parsley.