Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Turkish Stewed Green Beans and Bulgur Pilaf

I haven't really cooked with bulgur, but I see it in my future more because it's a quick-cooking and satisfying grain. This recipe combo is flavorful and the recipes are both simple, so this will probably wind up on regular rotation. It's a good bet for a night when you have a bit more time to spare. I rated it a 5 and Aaron gave it a 4.5. Emma won't touch it because of the tomatoes, but one day when she comes to the dark side, I bet she will like it!

 I used the green bean recipe here: Turkish Stewed Green Beans- the only change I made was to leave out the basmati. One helpful note: 500g of green beans is just over a pound and you absolutely must use fresh beans! I did use a can of  petite diced tomatoes instead of fresh, and that seemed just fine. Another note - 1/4 cup is a great deal of oil for this recipe. I'm not sure how critical it was in developing the delicious end result, but next time I make it, I will reduce it by 1/4 or 1/2 and report back!

In place of the basmati, I found this Turkish side: Turkish Bulgur Pilaf

My tweaks here were also limited: I used a Hungarian hot wax pepper instead of a banana pepper, I used 2 firm roma tomatoes, used olive oil for the fat, and I used 2 cups of water plus an un-chicken bouillon cube instead of the chicken broth. I opted for scant 1/2 tsp of salt, which seemed about right.  I could probably safely reduce the fat here by 1/2 as well. Hungarian hot wax peppers are not very spicy as far as spicy peppers go, but they add just a tiny bit of kick. If you do not like any spice, just use the banana peppers, which are in line with your average bell pepper in terms of heat.

It's important to note that the bulgur takes only about 15 minutes and the beans take about an hour, so start the beans, then prep your bulgur ingredients while the beans are cooking down, then get the bulgur on the stove when you're about 40-45 minutes into the bean-making process. This will get everything on the table at once with no over or under-cooking!

Nutrition (for 1/4 of the beans and 1/4 of the pilaf)

Calories: 439
Carbs: 57 g (28%)
Protein: 9.6 g (13%)
Fat: 21g (50% - this is why I want to reduce the fat in the recipes!)
Fiber: 13.9g (40%)
Vitamin A: 31%
Vitamin C: 47%
Calcium: 12%
Iron: 14%

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