At this moment in time bulgur has replaced the rice in my pantry because it has a fantastic nutty flavor and chewy texture. It is also perfect to cook with because it is like a blank palette to create different versions of a main meal or side salad. I created this one with Mediterranean-inspired ingredients. Mix it up your way by using chicken instead of shrimp or omit the protein for more of a take on a side salad. Serve 4 -6 depending on appetites.
1 cup of bulgur
2 cups of chicken broth
1 lb. of shrimp peeled, deveined and cooked
1 red bell pepper roasted, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 cucumber peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 – 7 oz. can of canned artichokes quartered
1/2 cup of pitted kalamata olives sliced
1/2 cup of firm feta cheese diced or crumbled
3/4 cup of Girard’s brand Greek Feta Vinaigrette
Cook bulgur according to package directions, this should take about 30 minutes. I am using chicken broth in place of the water it calls for. While bulgur is cooking prepare the rest of the ingredients. Cut the red pepper into thirds and remove seeds and some of the pulp from the inside of the pepper. Flatten pepper as much as possible. Place on a baking sheet lined with foil or coated with non-stick cooking spray. Broil on high for about 15 minutes or until mostly blackened. Check frequently. Allow to cool. No need to place in a bag. Once cooled remove skin, but do not run under water to remove any blackened skin, because it will compromise the flavor. Chop and set aside. Peel and devein the shrimp. In a medium sized pot filled half way with water bring to a boil. Add shrimp and cook until shrimp turns pink. This should take about 5 minutes depending on the size of your shrimp. Remove and set aside. Chop cucumber and artichokes if they didn’t come quartered and slice olives. Once all ingredients are ready add to a large bowl, add feta cheese and vinaigrette. Stir and serve warm or chilled.
Try Fog Bank Vineyards Chardonnay (Monterey County), Wente Vineyards Morning Fog Chardonnay (Livermore Valley), Irony Chardonnay (Napa Valley), Fat Tire Amber Ale New Belgium Brewing (Ft. Collins, CO) or Flensburger Brauerei Gold Premium Lager Beer (Germany).