Students from humble economic backgrounds who attended public rural schools in the 70s are probably most familiar with this recipe. According to my sources, school cooks often served this dish with bulgur instead of rice because schools received large donations of bulgur from the relief agency USAID.
This is a variation of our locrio (rice mixed with meat and vegetables) in which bulgur is used instead of rice. Because bulgur and rice cook differently the end result is a more “soupy” dish, closer to the texture and consistency of a risotto. This is one of those examples of a humble dish that tastes way better than what is expected of it, as is often the case with “poor man’s” dishes.
Have you ever tried it? If not, you must absolutely do. You will love it too.
- 3 cups of bulgur
- 6 cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil (corn, peanut or soy)
- 1½ lb [0.68 kg] of longaniza (spicy pork sausage), cut into slices
- 1 cup of diced auyama (West Indian pumpkin) [optional]
- 1 bell pepper, cut into small pieces
- 1 small red onion, diced
- 1 cup of diced tomatoes
- 1 cup of tomato sauce
- ½ teaspoon of pepper
- 1½ teaspoon of salt
- A pinch of oregano
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 bunch of coriander, finely chopped
- Soak the bulgur in the water for at least 2 hours prior to starting cooking.
- Drain the water, squeezing the bulgur to get rid of as much liquid as possible. Reserve bulgur.
- In a pot heat the oil over high heat.
- Brown the sausage. Lower the heat and add auyama, bell peppers, onion garlic, and tomatoes. Cook and stir until onions become transparent. Add tomato sauce, pepper, salt and oregano and mix well. Add the bulgur and coriander and mix well.
- Cover and simmer over low heat for 5 minutes.
- Serve with tostones or torrejas de berenjenas.