• 2 large onions, peeled and finely chopped

  • 90 ml olive oil, plus more to finish

  • 2 T tomato paste

  • 4 tomatoes, peeled and chopped

  • 90 ml water

  • 400 g coarse bulgur wheat

  • 1 1/2 t pomegranate molasses

  • 1 T lemon juice

  • 6 T chopped parsley

  • 3 spring onions, finely shredded, plus an extra one to garnish

  • 2 green chillies, deseeded and finely chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed

  • 1 t ground cumin

  • Salt and black pepper

  • 1 pomegranate seeks

  • 1 handful mint leaves, some whole, some roughly shredded


Here's my take on a Turkish classic. Some shape this salad into patties, to create a vegetarian version of the Lebanese dish kibbeh nayyeh (lamb and bulgur tartar), but I prefer it loose, a bit like a couscous salad. In the south of Turkey, near the Syrian border, they tend to use pomegranate molasses instead of lemon juice in their kisir. I use both, and then go to town by garnishing the dish with pomegranate seeds, too. Serve with fresh lettuce leaves, either as a starter or as part of a meze.


In a large saucepan, saute the onions in the oil until they turn translucent - about five minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook over medium heat for two minutes, stirring all the while with a wooden spoon. Add the chopped fresh tomatoes, leave them to simmer on a low heat for four minutes, then add the water. Bring to a boil, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the bulgur.

Add the molasses, lemon juice, parsley, chopped spring onion, chilli, garlic and cumin. Season, stir, then set aside until the salad has cooled to room temperature or is just lukewarm.

Taste, adjust the seasoning as necessary - it will probably need plenty of salt - and spoon on to a serving dish. Roughly flatten out the salad with a palette knife, creating a wave-like pattern on the surface, then scatter pomegranate seeds over and about. Drizzle olive oil over the top and finish with the mint and the extra spring onion.






Yotam Ottolenghi