The recipe I was aiming for originally was the Bulgur, Celery and Pomegranate Salad Recipe from the Moro East cookbook. I don’t read many cookbooks*, so i’ve never picked up a copy of Moro East, but I found the photo (and recipe) on 101 Cookbooks and thought “Oh my, that is a lovely photo, I must make that!” (it’s really a gorgeous picture, look at it)
So! Ingredient list in hand, off I went to the grocery store, thinking that this fabulous and pretty Bulgur, Celery, and Pomegranate Salad would be a great starter at dinner. I filled up my little basket with celery and walnuts and parsley and a little bottle of pom juice, and then I wound my way around the produce section, scanning for pomegranates. Strange! They weren’t there! And then I remembered – poms aren’t in season. Derailed!
At this point, I’d already committed to the idea of making a pretty salad, and a lack of pomegranate seeds wasn’t going to stop me. Sure, the Craisins I ultimately tossed in might not have the delicate, jewel-toned sheen of the pom seeds, and the nectarines were sort of a last-minute grab just so I could have some fresh fruit in the dish, but I don’t actually know what a proper Bulgur, Celery, and Pomegranate Salad tastes like, so it’s all okay. The important part is that the resulting Bulgur, Celery, Nectarine, Parsley and Craisin Salad in Pomegranate Dressing (or as The Boyfriend likes to call it, Not A Real Salad, because there’s no lettuce) was tasty and refreshing. And, of course, pretty:
Camera zoom does wonders. I don’t think the bulgur is that big in real life.
Not A Real Salad
2/3 cup bulgur (medium grind)
4-5 stalks of celery, finely chopped
a large handful of Craisins
a large handful of walnuts
a medium bunch of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 large nectarine, chopped
3/4 cup pomegranate juice
2 tbsp minced garlic, mashed into a paste with the back of a spoon
a liberal pour of olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Boil 1-2 cups of water in a small saucepan. Put bulgur into a small bowl, set aside. Chop celery, parsley, and nectarines, and place in large bowl with Craisins. Pour boiling water over bulgur, let stand for 15-20 minutes. Drain excess liquid with a colander or paper towel, add cooked bulgur to large bowl and toss until the mixture is well-blended.
Mash the minced garlic into a paste with the back of a tablespoon, and stir into the pom juice. Pour a generous amount of olive oil into the pom/garlic blend, add salt and pepper as desired, and stir. Drizzle the dressing over the salad mixture, and toss again. Add a handful of walnuts, serve immediately. Try to convince your boyfriend that it is, indeed, a salad.
Before I forget – the photo above is of the un-dressed salad non-salad whatever. It’s naked! Food porn, indeed. Anyhow, it’s naked because I snapped these photos before the salad was served, and I didn’t want to have to wash another plate. I’m aware of how lazy I am. The bulgur will take on a dark purple-y red tone after the salad is dressed, and it will also taste very nice.
*with the exception of Nigella Lawson’s How To Be A Domestic Goddess, and I really only bought that one because there’s a giant cupcake on the cover