Jul 8, 2021
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Raw Spicy Bulgur Balls Vegetarian

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Side dish - Appetizer



Side dish - Appetizer
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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Turkish
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6
Author: BreadandSalt


  • 1 Cup of fine cracked wheat - Bulgur nearly 150 gr,
  • 1 Tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon isot or sumac (in this recipe, we used sumac),
  • 1/2 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 Teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 Teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 Teaspoon dry mint flakes
  • 1/2 Teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt
  • 2 Slices stale white bread with crusts or bread crumbs
  • 2 Onions choped finely or grated, (you should discard the water of onions),
  • 2-3 Garlic cloves chopped finely or grated,
  • 3-4 Tablespoons Pomegranate syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 Tablespoon hot pepper paste
  • 3 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 100 gr Walnuts chopped finely (or use ground walnuts),
  • 1/2 Bunch parsley and green onion well chopped,
  • 1-2 Tablespoons honey
  • Couple of ice cubes


  • 1- First of all, put your all ingredients on your work surface. Then, put the cracked wheat (bulgur) in a pot and pour warm water on top to cover. Let it settle and drain the excess water. Set aside to dry.
  • 2- Then, put the isot (or sumac) and the red pepper flakes in a small bowl, cover with warm water and set aside for a while.
  • 3- Then, peel the onions and the garlic cloves. Use a food processor to completely chop (or grate them or chop them finely) and turn into a mash. Squeeze out the excess water and discard. Using a colander and pressing down with the back of a spoon will make this task easier (or put it in a cheesecloth and squeeze out the excess water and use the remaining onions).
  • 4- Then, add the stale bread (bread crumbs), all the other spices listed in the ingredients, the pomegranate syrup, the honey, the tomato paste and the hot pepper paste into the food processor or mixing bowl. Then, drain the excess water in the red pepper flakes and isot mixture and add to the meatball mixture. Then, knead the meatball mixture by your hands. This way is requiring lots of hand and elbow power, because it is cooking while kneaded by hand with many different spices and cracked wheat (bulgur) for a very long time. Generally our husbands knead it. On the other hand, if you want, you can run the food processor until everything is well blended. Bye the way, don't forget to add couple of ice cubes into mixture. You should knead the meatball mixture until the ice cubes melting.
  • 5- Then add the drained onion/garlic mixture, the bulgur and the olive oil into the mixing bowl and keep kneading or put them into the food processor and run it again. The mixture will obtain a dough-like texture. If you use food processor, move this dough into a mixing bowl. If not, keep kneading the mixture. All ingredients should be mix well.
  • 6- Lastly, chop the walnuts, parsley, green onions finely and add to the dough. Then, knead the dough until the parsley and the walnuts are well blended. Meanwhile, prepare a bowl with drinking water and a pinch of salt. Then, wet your hands while kneading if necessary as the dough will be sticky and will get dry in time. Then, set the dough aside for 10-15 minutes. Then knead for an additional 2-3 minutes and make small balls. You can make any shape, but to make the traditional shape take walnut-sized pieces, make an oval egg-sized shape and squeeze gently in your palm to create the finger marks. Then keep it in the frige.
  • 7- Serve on a bed of rinsed lettuce leaves or Turkish flat bread (lavash - tortilla) with lemon wedges.
  • Enjoy!


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