Bulgur is a staple of Middle Eastern cooking. You'll find it in many recipes, such as: Tabbouleh, Dolma's, Kufteh, and Pilaf.
Bulgur is a parboiled whole grain. Parboil simply means, it has been cooked briefly, in boiling water. Since it is parboiled, the cooking time is reduced. It will cook in the same amount of time, that it would take to make white rice.
When purchasing, keep in mind that it comes in four grinds:
Grinds 1 and 2 are fine, and are used in: baked goods, salads, and stuffings.
Grinds 3 and 4 are coarse, and are used in: pilaf, or soup.
I am just to demonstrate how to cook bulgur. Once the bulgur is cooked. I am going to use it for a stir fry.
Before you begin, make sure you are using a large sauce pan with a tight fitting lid.
Bring the heat up to medium high. Heat olive oil and bulgur. Stirring continually.
For this recipe, I am flavoring with chicken and butter. If you are vegan, skip this step.
Let the flavoring cook into the bulgur for a minute or so.
Pour in water. The liquid ratio is 2:1 (2 parts liquid to 1 part bulgur), but on the fine grind, I cut back on the liquid a little.
If you are going the vegan route, water is fine, but since no flavoring was added prior, I would suggest using vegetable stock.
Bring to a boil.
Cover with a lid. Then cut the heat down to medium low. Let simmer for 20 minutes. Don't stir!
You can check to see if it's done, by tilting the pot towards you. If there is no water pooling, it is done. If there is water, cover and allow it to simmer. Check every few minutes.
Fluff, with a fork, prior to serving. The colder it gets, the fluffier it becomes. Serve, as is, for a basic flavored bulger.
Store, covered, in the refrigerator. This is now prepped to use in my stir fry recipe:
1 Teaspoon olive oil
1 Cup bulgur (#3 or #4)
2 Chicken bouillon cubes, crushed
1 Tablespoon butter
2 Cups water
Heat olive oil and bulgur, in a large sauce pan, over medium high heat. Allow bulgur to cook for a minute or so. Stir in crushed bouillon cubes and butter, and cook for another minute. At this point the bulgur will have a nice coating of oil throughout. Stir in water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover with a tight fitting lid. Allow bulgur to simmer, at medium low heat, for 20 minutes; until all the water has been absorbed by the bulgur. To check for doneness: tilt the pan, to see if any water pools. If there is still water, cover, and continue cooking. Makes 3 1/2 cups cooked bulgur.