By: Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA
The Oldest Newly Discovered Health Food
Finally, there’s a food that tastes great, helps you lose weight and packs more health benefits than a field of alfalfa sprouts. It’s called…bulgur. No kidding!
The world has suddenly discovered what Armenians have known since Mrs. Noah cooked her first pot of pilaf on Mount Ararat.
Read any blog, Web site, magazine or news article on healthy eating and you’re almost certain to find the latest story about this “exotic” whole grain wonder.
Check out this article (“Bulgur: Natural Weight-Loss Food.”) from the Web site HowStuffWorks.com about “what’s left after wheat kernels have been steamed, dried, and crushed”
“High in fiber and protein, and low in fat and calories, bulgur is another food that offers bulk and nutrients to fill you up without adding pounds. One thing to keep in mind, a cup of bulgur has fewer calories, less fat, and more than twice the fiber of brown rice.”
That’s not all.
“Bulgur is also a standout in terms of its fiber content, just like whole wheat, and can help keep your digestive tract healthy as a result. The insoluble fiber it contains absorbs water, promoting faster elimination of waste, which prevents the formation of an environment that promotes the development of carcinogens.”
We love bulgur, as you know, and we have our own favorite ways of preparing it. You probably do, too.But just for a change, here’s a recipe from The Harvard University School of Public Health, which we figure might know a thing or two about healthy eating.
Bulgur Pilaf (Serves 4) 1¼ cups low-sodium vegetable broth, heated 1 cup bulgur 1½ tablespoons olive oil 1 clove garlic, minced ½ cup tomatoes, chopped ½ cup sun dried tomatoes, minced 1 dash crushed red pepper (or to taste) 2 teaspoons lemon juice 2 teaspoons honey 2 teaspoons canola oil Salt (optional) and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a sauté pan over medium heat, and sauté the garlic until it is tender; do not let it get brown.
Add the bulgur and sauté until it smells toasty, about 10 minutes. Pour in the hot broth, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until all the broth has been absorbed, about 10 minutes.
Fluff bulgur with a fork. Gently stir in diced and dried tomatoes.
In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, honey, canola oil, crushed red pepper, salt (if desired), and pepper.
Pour over bulgur and blend well. Serve warm.
Calories: 230⁄ Protein: 6 g⁄ Carbohydrate: 36 g⁄ Fiber: 8 g⁄ Sodium: 250 mgSaturated fat: 1 g⁄ Polyunsaturated fat: 1.5 g⁄ Monounsaturated fat: 5 gTrans fat: 0 g⁄ Cholesterol: 0 mg