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Bulgur Salad with Chickpeas, Cucumber and More

I don’t know what took me so long to get on the bulgur bandwagon. Maybe it’s because I still haven’t quite caught the appeal of tabouli (spelling variant ahoy) – though I do like parsley, just perhaps not in such proportions. But that is a topic for another day. Right now, the focus is on bulgur, and how the need to use up a bag of the cracked wheat that I had bought in a burst of optimism and a spirit of trying new things, led me to this delicious, quick summer meal; great for when it’s too hot and muggy to cook. Yes, it’s an almost tabouli-like salad. So?

Bulgur Salad with Chickpeas, Cucumber, Grape Tomatoes, and Avocado

For 1 -2 people, depending on how hungry you are and whether you want leftovers for lunch.

Ingredients based on what I had on hand:

  • 1/3 cup bulgur
  • 1 medium slicing cucumber (could use an English one too)
  • 1 15 oz. can chickpeas
  • handful of grape tomatoes (optional but yummy)
  • 1 avocado (finally manage to get one that was ripe enough but not too ripe)
  • chives

Cook the bulgur according to package directions. Rinse chickpeas. This salad is nice with chunky bits of produce or similar sizes, so go with what works best for you. Cut cucumber into preferred small shape (slices or cubes or what have you) – I liked largish cubes here. If using tomatoes, halve them or quarter, depending on size and preference. Same with the avocado – slices or cubes or an approximation of that. Chop the chives (about a tbs).

Dressing: olive oil, white wine vinegar, a touch of Dijon mustard, Ras al-Hanout spice blend to taste (I went with about 3/4 tsp and few extra shakes over the finished salad), and salt and pepper as needed. Mix together in the usual proportions (3:1 oil and vinegar is a good approach).

Toss the still warm bulgur with the chickpeas and cubed vegetables, then mix in the dressing and chives. Toss, taste, salt as needed. You could add pieces of feta or fresh mozzarella as well, but it is not necessary.

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