Golden Beet and Bulghur Salad

By • February 22, 2010 • 5 Comments



Author Notes: I find this salad really addictive. I love the balances of textures and flavors: Tthe chewiness of the bulghur, crunch of the walnuts, tenderness of beets, and the soft ricotta salata make me just want to take one bite after another. And the bright herbs, the citrusy tang, sweet beets, and the mellow walnuts taste like they were meant to be together.

Forever impatient, I started to microwave the beets for this recipe. They’ve turned out great this way and I don’t have my oven on for a whole hour to roast just a few of beets, or even take up 20 minutes steaming them on the stove.
Recipe, Interrupted

Serves 6

  • 3-4 golden beets
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for cooking beets
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cup bulghur wheat
  • juice and finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 3 tablespoons walnut oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped dill
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 6-7 mint leaves
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 1/3 cup diced ricotta salata cheese
  1. Scrub the beets clean. If the beets are over 1 ½ inches in diameter, slice them in half. Toss them with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper and put them in a microwave-proof bowl with about ¼ cup water.
  2. Cover and cook on high in the microwave for about 7 minutes. If you can easily insert a sharp paring knife all the way into one, they are done. If they still feel somewhat firm, cover them and let them sit for another few minutes. Allow beets to cool and then peel and dice them.
  3. While beets are cooking, put bulghur in a bowl, along with about ½ teaspoon of salt. Pour enough boiling water into the bowl to cover the bulghur. Cover the bowl and let the bulghur sit for about 15 minutes until tender. Drain off any remaining water.
  4. In a small bowl, blend together lemon juice, lime juice, vinegar, a generous pinch or two of salt, and black pepper. Whisk in the walnut oil and up to ¼ cup of olive oil (to taste).
  5. In a large mixing bowl, toss together beets, bulghur, herbs, walnuts, and cheese. Pour dressing over salad until well moistened (reserving any extra dressing) and toss well. Cover and chill for 30 minutes before serving. If not serving for several hours, toss the walnuts in just before serving so they will be nice and crunchy and re-taste and re-season, as necessary. (The longer the salad sits, the more it absorbs the dressing. It may need moistening with extra dressing and/or another pinch of salt.)

Tags: beets, bulgur, herbs, picnic, travels well

Comments (5) Questions (0)

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over 1 year ago YvonneBird

This is a super delicious dish, and everyone's favorite dish at our pot luck dinner last night. I added 2-3 tablespoons of rice vinegar to the dressing (no vinegar is listed in the ingredients, but is asked for in the body of the recipe). I did not have walnut oil (or any kind of nut oil), so I substituted a combination of roasted seasme oil and EVO. I am going to make this recipe again in the next few days!

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about 2 years ago HeatherM

There is vinegar mentioned in step four, but none is listed in the ingredients. What type of vinegar is intended and how much? Additionally, the lemon zest is not mentioned in the steps, but I assume it is added with the lemon juice.

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over 1 year ago YvonneBird

I added about 2-3 tablespoons of unseasoned rice vinegar (to taste) to the citrus juices to balance/round out the citrus flavore, before adding the oils.

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about 2 years ago Cheryl Patzer

This was a huge hit at work. I added half a teaspoon of sweet smoked paprika to the dressing.

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over 2 years ago Synky

Just finished eating!!! Really great salad! I used regular dark beets and was rather afraid of putting so many of them in one salad. The bulgar wheat and the beets compliment each other wonderfully though, really mellowing out with the lime and lemon juice. Did not let it chill in the refrigerator enough, but it was very yummy. Don't skip the roasted walnuts (I put in a cup of crushed ones in a 350 oven for 10 minutes and they came out perfect). Can't wait to taste it after a night in the refrigerator! Great recipe!