Friday, August 20, 2010

Armenian Wheat Pilaf

If you liked Rice Pilaf, you'll probably like Wheat Pilaf too.  Although in fairness, the Lone Wolf likes the rice pilaf better.  I'm just saying.  But to be fair, I'm giving you a recipe for both. Maybe you can hold a pilaf taste off with your family.  Just let me know which one wins okay?

Wheat Pilaf is more of an every day pilaf, where rice pilaf was typically used for special occasions.  I'm not prejudiced against wheat or anything.  I promise I don't have any anti-wheat sentiments or anything like that.  The rice pilaf and  I don't have any special deals going and I'm not getting any kick-backs.  I don't make up the rules here people, I just report the facts.  Wheat = Everyday.  Rice = Hoity Toity Special Occasions.  That's just the way it is.

It's made basically the same way though.  You'll need:

2 Cups of #4 Bulgher wheat (you can get this online if you can't find it locally)
1 Cube of Butter
1 Cup of Vermicelli bits
2 Cups Hot Water
2 Tsp Salt
2 tbs grapeseed oil or extra light olive oil if you can't find grapeseed

Brown the vermicelli bits in 2 tbs of light oil.  Stirring is the key here.  You cannot stop stirring.  It's best if you can find a big kid to do it for you.  I mean, why strain yourself when you have children?  

Once the vermicelli bits are brown, remove from heat and add 1/2 cube of butter.  Do not substitute with margarine - it will go horribly wrong.  Trust me on this one.

When butter is melted add the bulghur and return to heat and stir until bulghur is coated.

Add hot water.  It's important that the water be already hot, don't try to cheat and just add cold water, you won't like it.  Keep on the straight and narrow and follow the recipe!  Salt to taste, but start with 2 tsp.

Bring to a boil.

Cover and reduce heat to low and simmer for 25 minutes.

Now this is the most important part.  Just like rice pilaf, you MUST serve this on a platter or plate.  You cannot serve it in a bowl.  Sprinkle with pepper and viola!  Serves 3-4.  And just for kicks and giggles, this recipe can be double or even tripled.

I asked the girls' grandmother why the pilaf must always be served in a dish, and she said because her mother always did it that way.  Then she told me a cute story about how a woman she knew, always cut a little of the meat off of both ends of her roast before cooking.  When asked, she said her mother always did it that way.  Curious, they went to her mother, who said her mother always did it that way.  So at the next family gathering, they asked the original woman's grandmother why she cut a little of the meat off both ends of her roasts.  The grandmother said she used to do that because her roasting pan was always a little too small.  It just goes to show ya, traditions shouldn't be messed with.  Or is the lesson that you should have a bigger roasting pan?  I don't know, you figure it out, but while you're figuring it out, make sure you put your pilaf on a plate or platter.  Okay?

Seriously.. Thoughts?

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