Rice is such a staple accompaniment to Middle Eastern food, but other grains and starches feature heavily in Kurdish cooking too and they can add a real depth of flavour to a meal. Sawer (the Kurdish word for bulgur wheat and also the name of this dish) used to be a thrifty alternative to rice, but I would argue that it’s also a tastier alternative, bursting with umami from the fried onions and tomato. It’s quick and easy to make, requires very few ingredients and is vegan.

Prep time: 5 mins
Cooking time: 15 mins
Serves: 4

2 white onions, finely chopped
1 litre (4 cups) boiled water
300g (2 cups) bulgur wheat
140g tomato purée
1 ½ tsp salt
Sunflower oil

1. On a medium heat, add a few tablespoons of sunflower oil to a saucepan, then add the onions and sweat them down for 10 minutes.

2. Add the bulgur wheat, tomato puree and salt to the onions, then add the water and bring to the boil. 

3. As soon as the mixture comes to the boil, turn the heat down to a gentle simmer and cover with a lid. Leave for 15 – 20 minutes on a low heat (try not to lift the lid in this time). 

4. Once all the water has been soaked up by the bulgur wheat, its ready to be enjoyed!

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