Turkey is very much a country of grains.
Many of these grains are used for thick, heart-warming soups in the rural areas and consumed for breakfast. Otherwise they are used in various dishes eg stuffed vegetables, as well as in pilafs.
Now, let’s take pilafs: I imagine that for most of us, pilaf signifies a rice dish, right?
However, here in Turkey, it can denote a dish made from bulgur/cracked wheat or, as in this recipe, a particular type of cracked wheat known as firik /pron: frick.
|firik pilavı/firik pilaf just resting in the pan after cooking|
I don’t know how I came across it but for certain now at least in the major supermarkets you will find packets marked firik bulgur along with the various other packets of rice and grains.
You may already know that I am totally in love with bulgur. It is so much easier than regular rice: it isn’t temperamental, doesn’t go soggy, and stands up to reheating like no man’s business! It’s also very healthy.
Here is a recipe that combines regular bulgur with firik, as well as an interesting addition of chickpeas. Make it as a side with any meat dish. It can regularly be found in southeast Turkey: plain like this or cooked with lamb.
|here we have regular bulgur side by side with firik|
|coating both the bulgur and the firik in the melted butter|
- Melt the butter in a saucepan and add both the firik and the bulgur. Over a low heat, stir until coated.
- Add the salt, boiled chickpeas and hot water. Cover the pan with the lid. Cook on a low heat until all the water has evaporated.
- Remove from the heat and stir. Replace the lid and let sit.
- Serve hot (the heat will be retained).
|firik pilaf ready to serve|