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Bulgur (from Arabic: برغل bourghoul, "groats") is a cereal food made from the cracked parboiled groats of several different wheat species, most often from durum wheat. It originates in Middle Eastern cuisine.
|Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)|
|Energy||83 kcal (350 kJ)|
|Dietary fiber||4.5 g|
|Vitamin A equiv.|
|Vitamin A||1 IU|
|†Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults. |
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Bulgur is recognized as a whole grain by the United States Department of Agriculture. Bulgur is sometimes confused with cracked wheat, which is crushed wheat grain that, unlike bulgur, has not been parboiled. Bulgur is a common ingredient in cuisines of many countries of the Middle East and Mediterranean Basin. It has a light, nutty flavor.
A distinction is made between different grinds of bulgur: #1 fine, #2 medium, #3 coarse and #4 extra coarse. The highest quality bulgur has particle sizes that are uniform.
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Bulgur does not require cooking, although it can be included in cooked dishes; soaking in water is all that is needed.
Coarse bulgur is used to make pottages, while the medium and fine grains are used for breakfast cereals, salads such as kısır, pilavs, breads, and in dessert puddings such as kheer. Bulgur porridge is similar to frumenty, a cracked wheat porridge that was a staple of medieval cuisine.
In breads, it adds a whole-grain component. It is a main ingredient in kibbeh and, soaked but not cooked, in tabbouleh salad. It is often used where rice or couscous could be used. In Indian and Pakistani cuisine, bulgur is often used as a cereal to make a porridge with milk and sugar, or a savory porridge with vegetables and spices. It can be used to accompany other dishes in the same way as pasta or rice; it may be mistaken for rice because it has a similar appearance, although the texture is different.
Armenians prepare bulgur as a pilaf in chicken stock, with or without sauteed noodles, or cooked with tomatoes, onions, herbs and red pepper. The fine grind is used for making eech, a bulgur salad similar to tabbouleh, prepared with tomato paste, fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley, olive oil, and other salad ingredients to personal taste. Pomegranate molasses, which is sour and sweet, is commonly used instead of lemon juice to add tartness. A variety of mezes and main dishes are prepared.
In Cyprus, it is known as "πουρκούρι" and is used to make "κούπες" (also known as bulgur köftesi in Cypriot Turkish), a variety of kibbeh. Its crust is usually made of bulgur wheat, flour, oil, salt and egg, then filled with ground meat (beef and/or pork), onions, parsley and spices. There is also vegetarian "κούπες" which substitutes the ground meat with chopped mushrooms.
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